Life Coaching, Game Theory and Self-Created Suffering
Many people seek to lose when playing the game of life. A basic reason for this is that many of us find it seemingly impossible to be happy. This is because they have an aversion to happiness. Called cherophobia or fear of happiness, is an attitude towards happiness in which individuals may deliberately avoid experiences that invoke positive emotions or happiness.
One of several reasons why cherophobia may develop is the belief that when one becomes happy, a negative event will soon occur that will taint that happiness, as if punishing that individual for satisfaction. This belief is thought to be more prevalent in Eastern cultures. In Western cultures, such as American culture, “it is almost taken for granted that happiness is one of the most important values guiding people’s lives”. Western cultures are more driven by an urge to maximize happiness and to minimize sadness. Failing to appear happy often gives cause for concern. The value placed on happiness echoes through Western positive psychology and through research on subjective well-being.. Fear of happiness is associated with fragility of happiness beliefs, suggesting that one of the causes of aversion to happiness may be the belief that happiness is unstable and fragile. Research shows that fear of happiness is associated with avoidant and anxious attachment styles.
There are four major reasons why cherophobes avoid happiness
- The belief that being happy will provoke bad things to happen;
- That happiness will make you a worse person;
- That expressing happiness is an expression of the ego and is thus bad, or unspiritual of you or of others;
- The belief that bad things, such as unhappiness, suffering, and death, tend to happen to happy people. This is often expressed by the term “knock on wood.”
Knocking on wood used to be a way of warding off suspected impending bad luck, and now it’s used as a tongue-in-cheek sort of phrase for when someone has had a lot of good luck, meaning that the person should be careful to avoid the bad luck which may follow.
These elements call into question the idea that happiness is the ultimate goal for most people. This is a belief echoed in any number of articles, self-help publications, videos, and movies like the Pursuit of Happiness. Most of us are taught that certain choices are likely to make us happy, but deep inside we are skeptical of it all. Many of us were brought up in toxic and dysfunctional environments where it was normal to believe that worldly happiness was connected to sin, shallowness, and moral decline. Because of these mental implants, many of us will actually feel less satisfied when our lives are (by other standards) going well.
In my work as peak performance coach and mentor measures of personal happiness cannot simply be considered a yardstick for satisfaction with one’s life. In addition attitudes such as aversion to happiness have important implications for measuring happiness across our personal social networks and the larger culture.
One of several reasons why cherophobia may develop is the belief that when one becomes happy, a negative event will soon occur that will taint that happiness as if punishing that individual for satisfaction. This belief is thought to be more prevalent in Eastern cultures. In Western cultures, such as American culture, most of us assume that happiness is one of the most important values to aspire to. In the West, we are more driven by an urge to maximize happiness and to minimize sadness. In our younger years before we become more emotionally mature and self-aware, we often believe that short-term gratification is the fasted route to happiness. When this does not happen, or we make poor decisions in the quest for happiness it may be cause for concern. The value placed on happiness echoes through Western positive psychology and through research on subjective well-being. Fear of happiness is associated with the fragility of happiness beliefs, suggesting that one of the causes of aversion to happiness may be the belief that happiness is unstable and fragile. Research shows that fear of happiness is associated with avoidant and anxious attachment styles.
- Lewis Harrison, director of the “RealUGuru Project” is a pioneering life strategies mentor, seminar leader, radio host, practical philosopher, and contemporary spiritual teacher, specializing in human potential and personal development. He speaks about and teaches Applied Game Theory to individuals, colleges, associations, and organizations.
- Like him on Facebook at “Ask Lewis”
- Read his daily blogs at RealUGuru.com – a website exploring all aspects of personal development, spirituality, and human potential.
- To study Harrison’s Applied Game Theory with Lewis or to have him speak at your group feel free to contact him at: LewisCoaches@gmail.com.
- For a more detailed exploration please refer to his book Harrison’s Applied Game Theory: How to Solve any Problem Effortlessly – Volume 10 in The Teachings of Lewis Harrison series
- To learn more about the RealUGuru Project and the “Teachings of Lewis Harrison”, Volumes 1 – 27 go to Lewis’ website at: ReaUGuru.com.
- A series of talks by Lewis on winning the Game of Life can be found at his YouTube Channel at AskLewis/LewisHarrison
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Studying at the RealUGuru Project
Many of us have a dream or vision that has never been fulfilled. We are seeking a meaning to our lives. This meaning, dream or vision might be connected to spirituality, money issues, relationships or career… somehow it got lost along the way. All of the books that make up the Teachings of Lewis Harrison as well as Lewis’ three programs:
- The basic coaching and mentoring programMake Choices, Not Excuses: How to Solve Any Problem his
- Spiritual, Not Religious: Sacred Tools for Modern Times,
- The advanced Quantum Realities: Physics, Metaphysics and the Quest for Happiness.
All of these programs can help you make that dream come true and help bring meaning to your life by offering a system of guidelines, tips, strategies and creative exercises. To learn more about these programs go to the RealUGuru Project website at www.RealUGuru.com.
There are aspects of life that require more than just motivation, inspiration, logical-mathematical solutions or flip-simplistic solutions. There are times when you will need to explore deeply below the surface of things and then go even deeper to the very core. If you seek a deeper more complex and intellectually and spiritually rigorous relationship with a teacher feel free to contact me by Email at LewisCoaches@ gmail.com.
Don’t hesitate. You are an extraordinary person and the best of life is waiting for you to show up…..
Find all of Lewis’ Books at RealUGuru.com, Amazon.com, or at Your Local Book Seller.
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