Psychoanalyst Adam Phillips is interviewed in The Guardian about the paradox of chasing happiness and the negative effects of emotional idealism.
Phillips argues that trying to eliminate all sources of stress in your life is a pointless exercise and we should become better at tolerating difficult situations if we are to be become fully content.
I tell Phillips that at my workstation books with the word happiness in the title arrive unbidden by the hour. They include: Daniel Gilbert’s Stumbling on Happiness, Richard Schoch’s The Secrets of Happiness, Darrin McMahon’s The Pursuit of Happiness, Richard Layard’s Happiness: Lessons from a New Science and Jonathan Haidt’s The Happiness Hypothesis. Do you read these books? “I’ve looked at them. They seem to me to be the problem rather than the solution.”
Link to article ‘Happiness is always a delusion’.