The Lesson: In today’s society, happiness is often deemed as the most important aspect of your life, regardless of how it is achieved. However, in this intriguing TED Talk, a writer discusses why finding meaning in your life is more important than chasing happiness, and how there are four essential pillars to a meaningful life: belonging, purpose, transcendence, and storytelling.

Notable Excerpt: “Happiness comes and goes. But when life is really good and when things are really bad, having meaning gives you something to hold on to.”

The Speaker: Emily Esfahani Smith is an author and journalist who has graced the pages of the Wall Street Journal, New York Times, Time, The Atlantic, The New Criterion and many other publications. In addition to studying psychology and philosophy in school, her work has led her to interview thousands of neuroscientists, researchers, and behavioralists so that she can better explore how people can live more meaningful lives.

Books: Smith is the author of “The Power of Meaning”: a book that is dedicated to helping people find “fulfillment in a world that is obsessed with happiness”.

(LISTEN to the inspiring talk below) – Photo by Mayur Gala

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