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Building happiness into our culture

For starters, let's get rid of:

- The lottery

- Cosmetic surgeries

- Weight loss surgery

- Standardized tests

- Coffee

A nation of people has gathered themselves around a lottery, just waiting, as Seth Godin puts it, to be picked. They've dedicated some of their finest and finite attention to wishfully thinking they'll get even luckier than being struck by lightning.

Once I have more money, then I'll be happy…

We live in such a harsh and judgmental society that we've caused people to believe they aren't worthy of love and belonging until they look perfect or at least like everyone else. Surgery reduces our capacity to embrace imperfection, practice self-acceptance, or see beyond our most superficial layer.

Once I look better, then I'll be happy…

Our quick-fix culture isn't interested in resolving issues, such as obesity, at an emotional, causative level. The vast majority prefer to work on the surface, addressing WHAT has happened to someone and not WHY because it's less involved, not as messy and doesn't require empathy.

Once I'm thinner, then I'll be happy…

School was designed to create factory workers who show up, sit down and do as they're told. We no longer need compliant people…our world has changed (notice how many industry disruptors have emerged in the last ten years)! Wasting our children's most precious resources on remembering things so they can pass a test isn't creating a love for learning, a desire to explore or positioning our next generation to solve interesting problems.

Once I pass the test, then I'll be happy…

We live in a performance-based culture that measures success based on how much gets done, and coffee is the perfect drug to fuel the grind. It's become an absolute obsession that's created workaholism and is an assault to the family unit, evident by divorce rates, teen suicides and our worthiness epidemic.

Once I achieve more, then I'll be happy…

Nothing will change until our culture's measure of success changes. As Peter Drucker brilliantly stated: "What gets measured gets managed." Happiness always has been and always will be an inside job, and we're missing it because we're looking for it outside of ourselves.

"The purpose of our lives is to be happy." Dalai Lama

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