Everyone wants to be happy, but what does ‘happiness’ really mean? The dictionary of
Polish language describes it as a success in different situations; feeling satisfaction and joy. W. Tatarkiewicz distinguishes happiness in four concepts, as: prosperity, joyful experience, eudaimonia or permanent satisfaction from life in general.
Human right to be happy is written in
ning on lottery, death of the relative etc.)
a number of historically important documents (eg.
Hadley Cantril conducted a large study covering 14
The US Constitution). Many people are seeking
countries worldwide, and showed that no matter
happiness, often without specifying what it really
from which part of the globe people come from,
means to them. Happiness might be seen as an
there are few indicators, which are taken into ac-
emotion, which last for short time and is connect-
count while setting up level of happiness, such as:
ed with short-term situations. On the other hand,
level of living, family concerns, personal or family
it is also the way of estimating life as a whole. This
health, someone’s job and personal character.
difference is really important while describing happiness.
Due to the data from CBOS, nowadays
37% of Polish people declare that they are fully happy. Is it a lot? In 1988 just 18% of Polish could declare that. 71% of people in our country say they feel satisfaction in life (20% of them say they feel BIG satisfaction), just 3% of us are disappointed with life. How is it possible? Prices are increas-
Many people are seeking happiness, often without specifying what it really means to them
ing, salaries are staying the same, retirement age has already changed (for worse). There are many
So, how to measure happiness? The scientists,
questions with no answers. Everyone probably has
economists, psychologists etc. distinguish many
ever wondered how is that possible that some peo-
indexes of estimating happiness. One of them is
ple who have everything (in our opinions) don’t
The World Happiness Report, which takes into ac-
feel happy, and those who have nothing are able
count six factors: real GDP per capita, healthy life
to enjoy life. Due to psychologists everybody has
expectancy, having someone to count on, per-
fixed set-point of satisfaction and happiness from
ceived freedom to make life choices, freedom from
life. Different situations may temporarily place the
corruption, and generosity. Due to the rank from
person above or below it (such as marriage, win-
2015 Switzerland was placed as the first. 26
XIX numer magazynu Deal wydawanego przez SKN Inwestor działające przy Wydziale Ekonomiczno- Socjologicznym Uniwersytetu Łódzkiego.