Is There a Hierarchy of Happiness?

A few days ago, I read an article that roughly

The more elite the wealthy class is, the more they like to spend their leisure time in positive ways such as reading, learning, and sports;

The poor are immersed in the low-level happiness of playing games and watching short videos.

Poor people choose to stay in the dopamine rush, while rich people force themselves to chase endorphins.

After reading it, I thought about a question:

Is there a hierarchy of happiness?

A netizen commented:

The cruelest social reality is the pursuit of endorphins, but still poor;

The theory of teat music is not to use low-quality entertainment to block the upward momentum of the poor, but to kill their anger when they are unable to change.

This explanation is very psychoanalytically minded, and at the same time it is exactly the same as Aristotle’s understanding of happiness.

That is, the so-called low-level happiness——

It is a palliative for pain, a kind of happiness “in recovery”, and it cannot really make people feel the meaning of growth.

For example, some people smoke a lot of cigarettes every day, even though doctors have repeatedly emphasized the harm of smoking to the body;

I felt very tired and internally exhausted after watching the videos on my mobile phone all day, and told myself before going to bed that it was another day of mediocrity;

Endless procrastination before starting a job that must be done, until it can no longer be delayed…

When doing these things, you can get some time-limited happiness on the surface, but the inner motivation is actually just to get rid of the pain.

From Aristotle’s point of view, this is a kind of pleasure that brings people back to normal, compared with those painful processes, and it is not pleasure in the general sense, or it cannot be counted as pleasure. make happy.

Specifically, if a person’s personal boundaries were violated so much in their early life experiences that they couldn’t do what they wanted most of the time, then they are likely to use low-level pleasures to relieve trauma.

In the subconscious of these people, blooming themselves and stimulating endorphins are things that overturn the world.

In their minds, what is internalized is an unhealthy pattern of object relations.

As a result, some people spend their lives trying to “get back to normal.”

What they pursue is not happiness, but the absence of pain.

If you think about it carefully, this is a very sad thing.

The human subconscious is like a complex machine. Behind a behavior is not only the motivation, but also the structure and function.

When we do some recreational activities related to dopamine happiness, we are often judged by our parents or mainstream thinking as unmotivated, and then blamed by these people.

However, if accusations are useful, one can immediately cheer up people and run on the road of endorphins, and there will not be so many right and wrong grievances in the world.

To this day, many simple, crude and ineffective behavioral interventions are repeated every day around us.

for example:

The child’s academic performance is not good, and the only thing parents can think of directly is to enroll in extracurricular classes;

Parents want their children to get married quickly, and the only way is to keep urging them, arranging blind dates, and so on.

At the bottom of these phenomena, children gradually internalize such a relationship structure——

That is, I am not good enough, not capable enough, and my life needs to be carried out under the negation, urging and interference of others.

Such an experience will become the prototype of all a person’s future relationships with others.

At this time we may find that-

Spending a lot of time on some low-level pleasures every day happens to be under the scene of constant evaluation and accusation.

Even if I have 10,000 unwillingnesses in my consciousness, I still cannot escape the operation of my unconscious after all.

Because we have been living with an object of blame for a long time, we will continue to create things for others to blame us.

Once we become very self-disciplined and make certain achievements, it is equivalent to the inner object being out of work, which is an extremely terrifying thing.

Classical psychoanalysis believes that libido seeks pleasure, and the object is only satisfied as an object;

Object relations, on the other hand, understands pleasure very differently. It believes that connecting with people or seeking relationship is pleasure in itself.

So here comes the question, what if the relationship you find is particularly painful?

The answer is: Pain is pleasure.

In other words, pain and happiness are no longer important.

With this person, the way we deal with certain things makes us smell the original object (early nurturer), which is “joy”.

In the chats of female elders that I have heard since I was a child, when talking about some divorced families and children, there is a sentence that appears very frequently:

No matter how bad his father is, in the eyes of other children, he still has to be his own father after all.

At that time, I didn’t quite understand that the child’s father ran away with another woman, so why does his child still think his father is good?

Now using psychology, I can understand this matter to the most fundamental point, which is a person’s loyalty to the original object.

No matter how bad the original object is in the eyes of the world, it is the emotional attachment of a child after birth. The function of TA is to help the child overcome the anxiety of existence, that is, to allow the child to survive.

If left, the child will face out-of-control anxiety.

Therefore, from the perspective of psychology, low-level happiness cannot simply be regarded as not doing business properly, but that a person needs greater courage to get rid of the original object and expand the self-function.

For those who are just starting to practice running, there are two things that are most difficult to overcome.

One is to get up early, and the other is to run to the point where the body is about to be unbearable, and if you continue to persevere, the more you run, the easier it will be, and you will feel a sense of accomplishment spontaneously.

Farmers get a bumper harvest through hard work, solve many technical difficulties to complete a work project, and parents train their children to grow up. Among these things that bring people lasting happiness and happiness, they all need to overcome human instincts to achieve.

I really like a shared by teacher Fu Lijuan. It is the time for the daughter to go to bed at night. She instinctively wants to continue playing, but she mutters, “Mom said, go to bed early and grow taller.”

It is really beautiful to see the moment when two or three-year-old children can overcome their instincts because of their love for their mothers.

Being able to overcome instinct is something to be proud of.

Just because they once felt truly loved by their parents, children are willing to give up some things, overcome some difficulties, and achieve some achievements to express their love for their parents.

A friend of mine is an elementary school teacher. One day, a boy in her class told other classmates that his dream is to earn a lot of money and buy a big house for his mother when he grows up.

My friend asked me, is it because the mother of the child puts her own expectations on the child, is it considered a kidnapping of the child’s life?

Actually not necessarily.

Although we have seen too many similar situations, whether it is kidnapping or not depends on whether the parents allow their children to have sufficient choice in their own lives.

The premise is how psychologically differentiated the parents and children are.

When children do not have independent consciousness, parents should take care of their children as they love themselves;

When a child begins to move toward independence, it is best for parents to love the child as another person.

This is called the high degree of psychological differentiation of parents.

Buying a big house is not the point, the point is what kind of mood and attitude your children will bring to buy in the future.

We do certain things for another person, and if the inner feeling is more of compulsion and anger, then both parties are in undifferentiated unfreedom.

On the contrary, there is not much reluctance to be coerced, which means that you are psychologically independent.

The higher the degree of psychological differentiation, it means that parents understand the true meaning of loving children, and the easier it is for their children to become people who create and enjoy high-level happiness.

Personally, I don’t like to divide a person’s happiness into low-level or high-level, and I don’t recommend you to do this to yourself.

People in the Jianghu will be swayed by all kinds of social evaluations if they are not careful. If they can’t pursue high-level happiness, should they die?

From the perspective of psychology, everyone can be understood, and learning to understand oneself is to be compassionate to oneself.

As long as happiness does not harm others, it is self-interested and should be welcomed.