Maybe you are happy and don’t know it. Maybe you are NOT happy and don’t know it.
It turns out that the definition of happiness is fuzzy. People from different cultures don’t agree on what happiness is.
In East Asian cultures, being happy means being content. Look at a Buddha statue, typically with the very slightest hint of a smile, and you will understand the region’s ideal mood. The purpose of Buddhism is the eliminate suffering, so you should be content if you are not suffering.
In my culture, a person cannot be considered happy without feeling ecstacy-inducing fun. Bungee jumping makes us feel alive, so it is should make us happy.
But the differences in how
A really interesting article that describes the cultural differences is Ideal Affect: Cultural Causes and Behavioral Consequences by Jeanne Tsai (2007) in Perspectives on Psychological Science. (10.1111/j.1745-6916.2007.00043.x).
Can you learn to be satisfied with contentment? Or do you need to add some fun to your life?
You must answer these questions to avoid chasing happiness wthout ever catching it.