A happy accident

A sense of belonging is critical to your wellbeing and personal safety.

Epicurus, the ancient Greek philosopher wrongly celebrated for being a bon vivant and gastronome, was actually a man of simple tastes. Like all of us, he sought the key to happiness — and may have indeed found it. He believed the three major platforms to creating a happy life were to nurture deeply held friendships, to always examine the life you lead and to enjoy personal freedom through self-sufficiency.

Reducing happiness to a formula may be a simplistic approach but, nearly 2500 years on, these teachings may be the most cutting-edge self-help advice yet.

The happiness formula

Like Epicurus, other philosophers for thousands of years have beseeched us not to embark on the vain pursuit of happiness but to instead search for our own meaning and purpose in life. Happiness, by definition, is an ephemeral and elusive notion. We grab at it in a variety of forms, including love, money, status and power, and yet we are often thwarted by disappointment and anxiety.

By the very nature of life, happiness is inevitably short-lived and fleeting. The problem, of course, is that you can see it as a prize or outcome rather than as a consequence or by-product of

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