Dr. B's Blog

You're not doing it right.

The New York Times has been doing a nice job of covering one of my favorite topics: mindfulness. Their latest article highlights one of my other interests: technology and its use in psychological research. The NYT reports:

Whatever people were doing, whether it was having sex or reading or shopping, they tended to be happier if they focused on the activity instead of thinking about something else. In fact, whether and where their minds wandered was a better predictor of happiness than what they were doing."

I believe that the paper's use of the generic term "happiness" (and possibly the research article summarized therein) might be oversimplifying the experience that comes when one focuses one mindfully on an activity since other research on mindfulness finds that the emotional experience is more akin to contentment than happiness, but the point remains: if you want to feel positively, focus one-mindfully. What you're doing isn't as important as how you're doing it.