Happiness: Is It a Public or Private Concern and What Do We Want to Do About It?

Who is responsible for our happiness; is it a public or private responsibility? The United States Declaration of Independence says we have an inalienable right to pursue happiness, and that it is the responsibility of governments to protect this right. Beyond protecting our right to pursue happiness on an individual basis, what additional expectations do we have of our leadership – business, social, spiritual, and political – around happiness and well-being?

According to the authors of the 2015 World Happiness Report, happiness is increasingly considered a proper measure of social progress and a goal of public policy. A global focus on measuring and explaining subjective well-being is a recent development since the first World Happiness Report was published just 3 years ago in 2012. Included in this report are the primary rankings and explanations for life evaluations based on 6 key variables: GDP per capita; social support (someone to count on in times of trouble); healthy life expectancy; freedom to make life choices; generosity; and freedom from corruption (trust). According to the report, these 6 variables accounted almost three-quarters of the differences in the scores among countries and regions. Differences in positive and negative emotions are also evaluated but aren’t fully explained by the 6 factors.

Supplementing the measures of life evaluations in the report are chapters that provide more analysis of specific issues including new results in the neuroscience of happiness, the importance of social capital for well-being, using happiness as the measure of benefit in cost-benefit analysis, and happiness and well-being for those under the age of 18.

During our roundtable discussion, we’ll explore happiness and well-being from both the public and private perspective. We’ll discuss what we can do to improve our own well-being and explore what role we want to take as leaders or want other leaders to take for improving well-being in others.

Please join us on May 29th for the May Women’s Leadership Roundtable and contribute to an engaging discussion of how we relate to and experience time in our lives, what core beliefs we currently hold and what may need to shift for us to make the most of the time of our lives.

Please note: This is a “brown bag” event, and it is recommended that participants bring their lunch to eat during the roundtable. We’ll also have beverages and snacks to share. The Women’s Leadership Roundtable is a facilitated open forum for women, as leaders of themselves and others, to discuss relevant issues, build community and network, collaborate with, learn from, and support one another. It provides an opportunity for women to share their experiences, engage in thought-provoking discussion, and to generate ideas and growth together. The roundtable is an ongoing event, open to the public, held on the 3rd Friday of the month from January through October in a Denver area location. You are encouraged to attend as frequently as possible and bring your ideas, issues, and interests to the discussion. There is a $10 charge for the roundtable, paid in advance when registering online, and a $12 charge when paid at the door. A discounted rate is available for those wishing to register for an entire year of roundtables. For additional information contact Karen McGee at 303 503-9681.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *