The Psychology Of Hedonic Adaptation
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... also referred to as hedonic treadmill, is defined as "the observed tendency of humans to quickly return to a relatively stable level of happiness despite major positive or negative events or life changes" - Positive Psychology Program.
After a while, people become used to changes in their lives. The enjoyment or unhappiness that follows certain life events gradually wears off, returning each person to their "default" emotional state.
Critics view the hedonic adaptation tendency as a generalization that fails to take potentially shifting factors into account.
People become used to whatever changes are causing their increase in happiness. Over time, the initial excitement of the thing that happened wears off with a return to the "set level of happiness."
Someone who undergoes a positive experience with desirable offshoots can shift their levels of expectation. It then becomes their new normal.
The process of hedonic adaptation can be minimized, if not eliminated.
SIMILAR ARTICLES & IDEAS:
Hedonic adaptation refers to people’s common tendency to return to a determined level of happiness regardless of life’s ups and downs.
Hedonic adaptation is often referred to as “the hedonic ...
Researcher Sonja Lyubomirsky has examined this set-point:
A full 50 percent of our happiness set-point is due to genetics. 10 percent is affected primarily by circumstances like where we were born and to whom. 40 percent is subject to our influence.
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Spend 5 to 10 minutes at the end of each day writing in detail about three things that went well that day, large or small, and also describing why you think they happened.
You don’t know what you’ve got till its gone.
Consider the many ways in which important, positive events in your life—such as a job opportunity or educational achievement—could have never taken place, and then reflecting on what your life would be like without them.
We have a tendency to adapt to pleasurable things—a phenomenon called “hedonic adaptation”—and appreciate them less and less over time.
We can interrupt this process by trying the Give it Up practice, which requires temporarily giving up pleasurable activities and then coming back to them later, this time with greater anticipation and excitement.
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