Yan Shiliang

This conversation is closed.

In order to make yourself happy, you need to make others happy first?

People have been pursuing happiness in such a short life-time, some could be extremely selfish while they can also live a happy life, someone could be crazy generous while they are also happy with that,They gain satisfaction by making others happy, i enjoy this power of helping. do you agree with the topic? please share your ideas:)

  • Jul 23 2011: Joy/Happiness is infectious, if you are happy, people feel it and it is easier to share it and in that state of mind, you are better able to make others happy. I doubt that a depressive person who broods over his state will be able to make others happy as he/she is too preoccupied with his/her own situation/condition. Thus the phrase 'be kind to yourself and then be kind to others' is a similar, sound advice. On a psyche level, I sort of think that when you are able to spread happiness, it does boost your self-esteem or self-worth.
  • thumb
    Jul 23 2011: You can either learn to make yourself happy and then make others happy or learn to make others happy to make yourself happy. Either way you go with it can help make you and others happy. There isn't a/one formula for happiness. It's neither selfish/selfless to want to be happy.

    I guess you're talking about the selfish ways we try to gain happiness? For people who choose to be selfish to gain happiness will only gain a sense of 'happiness' from pleasure, that type of happiness doesn't last very long, it is fleeting, instead it uses itself up...That's why most would suggest helping others/being generous is a much better way to gain a true sense of happiness because it gives a state of fulfillment and serenity from within.
  • thumb
    Jul 25 2011: Hi Shillang,

    I think it would be hard to make someone else happy if you were not happy yourself.

    Actually, I don't even think we can make anyone else happy.

    We can contribute to a happy environment by being happy ourselves but each person is responsible for their own happiness.

    Happiness is like thirst: If I am thirsty, even if you drank all of the water in the Yellow River, you cannot quench my thirst for me. But if I drink only one or two small glasses of water, I can quench my own thirst.
    • thumb
      Jul 25 2011: Good point Thomas..didn't think of it this way..
    • thumb
      Jul 25 2011: Hey Thomas, thanks for your point.

      But i guess the thirst is a totally different idea, A is thirsty, A drinks enough to be not thirty, then is it able for him to give water to B? it is impossible to bring water to someone else by drinking oneself, However, for happiness it is more about infectious, as you said, it is not able to quench others' thirst by quenching oneself's, but it is possible to be happy to let other people happy. right?

      And if things really need to be compared, i guess love will be a better option, how can a person who do not love himself love others? I think it is safe to say it in this way.
      • Jul 28 2011: I fully agree it is hard to make someone happy when you yourself are not.
        But for a lot of people, if they make a sad person happy, it will make them happy aswell.
        So whilst it might be hard, it can also bring happiness to yourself.

        It is easier to make a person happy, while you yourself are happy.
        And then again, it will boost your happiness aswell if you have sympathy.

        For example:
        When you cheer up a buddy because his girlfriend just broke up with him, it can make you happy to see him happy again.
    • thumb
      Jul 29 2011: Happines depends on events and joy comes from inside. I agree with you
  • thumb
    Jul 24 2011: I agree with Tim blackburn that people who are happy with themselves make others happy.You can not give what
    you don't have.The world will be a better place to live if there are many happy people.the positivity they exhibit will invariably affect others.
    • thumb
      Jul 24 2011: Thanks for the perspective, that reminds of of the relationships between the countries, what if every country is trying to gain their on happiness based on other countries' miseries? so suppose China is happy with himself, but he could not offer the south east asian countries a happy environment, USA is happy with himself, it is still impossible for him to give the middle east a break. DO you think they are the same? or just because they are powerful enough to ignore others' feelings?
  • Aug 5 2011: I agree with Thomas Jones. each person is responsible for their happiness. Every one have his way of making his self happy, and if you don not make yourself happy, your happiness will be controlled by others,

    Yan Shilliang helping others first, does not make me happy , I think happiness is something good that you feel inside,
    like they they said -: feel the rain by yourself, no else can not feel it for you.
    Helping others is good, we have help each other always, weather we are happy or sad.
  • thumb
    Jul 29 2011: I totally agree with your ideas. I follow Christ command to go about doing good to everyone I meet. Sometimes it is a smile, a good day, a helping hand, letting them in line infront of me, or other small things that make them feel important and cared about.
  • thumb
    Jul 25 2011: I wish every country concentrates on it's problems and miseries and creare a happy .peaceful atmosphere for it's citizensEvery country has has poverty,corruption health care problems and others.Why not deal with them before thinking of other country problems.Once we solve our problems, definitely we can try to help others.
  • thumb
    Jul 24 2011: One of my guide to happiness... love this so much, I download, shrink, and copy itu to my cell so I can play it when I need it...

    http://www.ted.com/talks/brene_brown_on_vulnerability.html
  • thumb
    Jul 23 2011: I think, in order to make other people happy you have to be happy first. Can you imagine a sad person trying to make another one happy ? I can't ....if you can't make yourself happy, how do you think you can make others happy ?
    • thumb
      Jul 23 2011: I think you don't have to be happy to give a helping hand to a person in need or giving a hug to someone who's feeling down, or be loving to your child. You could be having a miserable day and still have the capacity of being kind to someone and making them feel happy. I think the idea of having to work on our own happiness before attempting to help others gets boring and wastes time. If one just helps others to find happiness in time you will feel the radiating affect. Yes, help yourself to be happy too at the same time but don't wait until you're feeling happy to feel you are now capable of bringing happiness to others. If we all chose to act in this way we'd all be miserable..
      • thumb
        Jul 23 2011: Hi Jocelyne, sure you can feel down one day and are happy most other days.....that's something different though.
        What we have to look at is the general state of a person and not just a particular moment in time.
        I'm convinced that, if you are an overall unhappy person, you will not be able to make another person happy. The same as, if you are starving on the verge of death in sub Saharan Africa, you are in no condition to help feed other people or if you have no earthly possessions, it will be impossible for you to give to charities.
        Looking after yourself first, might seem egoistic on first glance, but if you think about you'll see it's the only way enabling you to help others.
        • thumb
          Jul 23 2011: Hey Harald, thank you for your thoughts.

          It's true if you put it in that way. Although to be that unhappy, as a starving person on the verge of death then that unhappiness must be depression on the verge of suicide. I think that's a bit extreme and therefore, yes one should focus on bettering themselves mentally, emotionally and physically first.

          But, if we are speak about unhappiness such as sadness/misery then I think we still have the capacity to act in a kind way to others. I think it should be done together, bringing happiness to others and bringing happiness to oneself - a much more effective way to feeling happy. An act of compassion should help us feel happier, maybe not the happiest person alive but better. If not then that's maybe a sign of depression and therefore then we should focus on bettering ourselves first.
  • Jul 23 2011: Sorry, i would disagree. Doing something for someone does not make you happy. You gain satisfaction but not happiness. Doing something for someone you care about is true happiness. If i help my girlfriend i am happy, if i were to help Maddoff, i would feel disgust.
  • thumb
    Jul 23 2011: From a Biblical standpoint you reap what you sow, so I believe you have to some one happy before you can be happy it's the circle of life.
  • Jul 23 2011: hello freinds thanks for this lovely convo.
    what i think only that person can make others happy if he or she himself/herself is Happy...Happiness is something which comes from within n which further attracts more happiness.....so be Happy first n thn u will automatically make people around You HAppy...Thats true Happiness my freind...bles All..:):)
  • Comment deleted

    • thumb
      Jul 23 2011: Does forgetting one's own worries equal solving them? the worries still exist... it is like temporary cure?
      • thumb
        Aug 5 2011: its just ignoring a problem. there is no cure. either its a problem, or its not.
  • thumb
    Jul 23 2011: *smile*
    People think about happiness when he got too much time in his hands.
    When you're busy helping people, you don't think about happiness... you ARE happy.

    There's a great movie based on true story played by robin williams called "Adam Patch".
    I think you'll enjoy it.
    • thumb
      Jul 23 2011: Thanks for the recommendation, Pau, Actually i know how important it is to make others happy, but sometimes when you are not happy? do you think it is still good to make others happy first, then you will turn out to be fine?
      Do people need to learn how to be happy by yourself, such as meditation, exercising , to make themselves comfortable first, but i guess we are living for our own happiness after all, and then others, what do you think?
      • thumb
        Jul 23 2011: What if I may ask is your definition of happiness ?
        • thumb
          Jul 23 2011: satisfactions about things here and there,like people could be satisfied with just being selfish, people can also be satisfied by providing helps..
      • thumb
        Jul 23 2011: Yan, yes, people can be satisfied but happiness isn't just the feeling of satisfaction in life, although it can be.. There's a far greater spectrum of levels of happiness that just cannot be reached through selfishness but only through giving, mindfulness, awareness and compassion. So to answer your question, I'd say giving and helping others feel/find happiness is a much more rewarding thing to do. One finds a more long-lasting sense of happiness than when gaining it through selfish ways.

        I think your definition of happiness needs to be expressed more clearly as well as what you are referring to when you say 'selfishness'. What do you mean by selfish happiness exactly? It sounds to me that you may be confused between pleasure and happiness.
  • thumb
    Jul 22 2011: to me it seems the only people who make others happy are those happy with themselves.
    • thumb
      Jul 22 2011: Do you think it is possible the people who are living in darkness and loneliness are aslo making others happy, while they can not be happy by making others happy?
      • thumb
        Jul 22 2011: if those in darkness could find it in themselves to be happy, then i think they have a better chance at making more people happy. i also think someone living in darkness and loneliness has less chance of making friends and friendly happy.
      • thumb
        Jul 28 2011: because a genuienly happy person would find it difficult to be happy with someone who cannot find happiness with themself. like how a superhero would find it hard to feel acomplished knowing someone somewhere is in need of help.
    • thumb
      Jul 29 2011: Good one Tim