How To Buy Happiness – President Elizabeth Sheehan’s Welcome to the New Rotary Year

For Americans, July begins with celebrating our country’s independence. For Rotarians, it also means a new ‘Rotary year,’ a designation since 1913.

As the new president of the eClub of Arizona, I’m excited about the coming year and proud to be part of this club. We having amazing members who live the Four-Way Test and practice Service Above Self as naturally as anything they do.

I became involved with Rotary in 2012 through my job. I met people who do so much to make our community, our world, a better place. I wanted to be like that – altruistic. And these people, these Rotarians, all seem to be so happy.

Research suggests that some people who are more altruistic have a larger amygdala, which is found deep in our temporal lobe and is the center of our emotions and motivation.

I doubt that I have a larger amygdala because there are times that I truly lack motivation. There must be another reason, at least for me.

The following (short) Ted Talk by social science researcher Michael Norton explains it perfectly – we like to give and do for others because it makes us happy. His research shows that those who give to others not only feel better, but they perform better in their jobs or as part of a team.

Check it out and post your comments below – we’d love to know if you agree with what Michael says. Can we buy happiness?


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