The Psychology of Everyday Life: Motivation and the Search For Happiness

The Psychology of Happiness

What is the hedonic treadmill?

The concept of the hedonic treadmill is closely related to the concept of the happiness set point. If we are destined to return to our happiness set point over time, then positive life events can only give us a temporary lift. People who are constantly in search of a higher state of happiness may deny this to themselves, repeatedly pursuing temporary pleasures as if the effect will not, in fact, be temporary. It is as if they are continuously marching on a treadmill, thinking they are going forward when they are really staying in place.


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