• Emily’s book is The Power of Meaning: Crafting a Life That Matters (Amazon | | 800CEOREAD | IndieBound). You can find more about Emily herself on her website.
  • She and Stanford professor Jennifer Aaker wrote this excellent New York Magazine piece on why pursuing meaning is wiser than pursuing happiness.
  • Several studies demonstrate that meaning-seeking and meaningful acts can boost our well-being. Here are two examples. First, Veronika Huta and Richard Ryan (one of the heroes of Drivehave found that pursuing pleasure without virtue makes us momentarily happy, but combining them provides lasting satisfaction. Second, this study shows how helping out around the house can boost young people’s resilience and sense of self.

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23 Responses to “Pinkcast 1.15: A simple way to add more meaning to your life.”

  1. kim cornelissen says:

    As somebody working in renewable energy and ecology, I think that “meaning” should be more than only the examples that you’ve talked about in the Pinkcast because, while they are positive and might change other people lives, it should simply be part a normal habit developed daily (helping and complimenting should be a way of life, daily…)… I think what become very meaningful is when one is part of something bigger, where the sense of community is reborn and you can see the difference you really make. Together. For me, this “epiphany” was fighting against shale gas with hundred other citizens and supporting the 2012 huge and important student strike in Québec. Then, you get the real “meaning” of “meaning”… And there are quite enough causes to be part of one, two, three or more…

  2. Aimee Siegler says:

    This made me think of ASQ’s Quality for Life movement – – using professional skills beyond the workplace to make a difference and build meaning.

  3. Bonnie says:

    If everyone could live with more “meaning” in their lives, 2017 could be a great year. It’s all about the small gestures of caring…thanks

  4. Chris says:

    Thanks for the great jump start to 2017. Meaning vs Happiness. I like it.
    Enjoy the Journey…
    Chris =]

  5. Debbie Wizig says:

    Love this so much! I’m a teacher and try to do this every day and try to teach the children and also model for them how and why to do it, as well. Thank you for all your Pinkcasts and for sharing this video!

  6. Valter says:

    The list of meaningful activities listed during the Pinkcast seems too trivial to me to be of use in the pursuit of meaning in my life. The reference article was better. I look forward to reading the book.

  7. I read the previous comments that said the examples were too trivial, but I see it differently. These examples are the kinds of things that cement our relationships, make us believe in the world, radiate out and keep us going.

    Grand ideas do not weigh more in the balance of what is valuable in life. That vision is needed as well, but it should not lead us astray into thinking that small acts are of lesser merit.

    • Lev Karasin says:

      I agree with you, David,

      They may seem trivial but it’s those small acts that amount to much larger things in life. The things we often don’t bother even pursuing.

      Meaning can be viewed in different regards, it is neither too small or too grand.

  8. Kristen says:

    Great ideas today, thanks! Despite the comments about these tips being too thin, I think it counts as a helpful strategy, especially for “beginners”, who are simply feeling like their lives feel a little dull or flat–These might be people who don’t have as much self-awareness as some of us who have practiced, reflected, and explored our psyche’s in depth. After becoming more aware of how the little things matter, the beginners might delve a little deeper, or reach out on a larger scale.

  9. Isabel FOUCHECOUR says:

    The meaning of our lives is not always linked to other people. Explorers, like Einstein or Van Gogh, had to do what they did, that was what gave meaning to their lives… And, yes, the side effect is that we all benefit of their exploration. But, first, they were involved in their research…
    My hypothesis is that extroverts and introverts do not manifest meaning in their lives in the same way.

  10. Lev Karasin says:

    Excellent pinkcast! keep them coming, Dan.

    I especially like the fact that we over instate the word meaning and think of it so grandeur, when in reality it’s all those little things that add up in the end.

    As for the compliments, I believe in a spontaneus way to give compliments, when they are expected they lose their meaning, pun intended.

  11. Mike Caro says:

    Great PinkCast to start off the year. I read Emily and Jennifer’s article that you recommended and I think Kim (previous commenter) would find that much of what she would like to have heard in the Cast is in the article. I’ve found, through personal experience and intentionality, over the years, that a richer life is achieved for me by doing things for others. If we can make the world better (i.e. make a difference in the lives of others; have a career that we perceive as meaningful), even if only a small slice of it, we create two things. 1) A legacy worth leaving–and I submit that nearly all of us would like to do that; and 2) Personal satisfaction. Both of those things tend to generate happiness. I often tell anyone who will listen that happiness is an emotional reaction to things that are happening to us. Real joy (meaning, satisfaction) comes from a life lived for something besides ourselves. For me, this is informed by my faith, but it is true outside that context as well.

    Love the PinkCasts and the totally random newsletters. Happy (Meaningful) New Year!

  12. Bonnie Koeplin says:

    A small act of kindness can make all the difference to another person’s “meaning”, too.
    Thanks, Dan. I’ll be getting the book.
    Happy New Year!

  13. Sarah says:

    Nice! It’s interesting – I’m just renaming my first book – Finding Your Bliss – Discover A Life Of Meaning to Simplify Your Life. I think people didn’t get the finding your bliss bit, and encouraging people to find meaning does seem huge. I wish Emily much success.

  14. David Antol says:

    What a great concept to start the new year! Thanks

  15. Cindy Stader says:

    I like the part where Emily defined meaning – connecting and contributing to something beyond the self. I think that contributing is important but the connection piece is what so many of us desire, especially in this new world where our phones and technology can isolate us from one another. So, in the end, we experience meaning by reaching out to others. This IS a good thing, a way to make our world a better place. Hooray!
    Thanks Dan and Emily!

  16. Rita says:

    As I grow older I see these actions as improving one’s sense of safety and security. As acts that help the self. My admiration is for the outliers who push the boundaries of safety and security when making the world/earth better. Cheers for a new year!

  17. Arlene Hougland says:

    What a great service you provide, Daniel. Love this concept and I plan to think about how I can pursue meaning every day. I do stand up comedy and yesterday I was able to make someone laugh who had recently lost her son. What a wonderful feeling.

  18. Very helpful and uplifting. Perfect timing for this part of the year. I’m glad that it’s an interview and I like the brevity: I can fit this in to my morning when I’m reviewing emails (part of two episodes each day). I don’t have a desk job anymore.

  19. Paul says:

    What a nice way to start the New Year…!!! We need more positives in our daily lives. Thanks for sharing Daniel. Keep up the great work and Happy 2017

  20. Karen says:

    Thanks! This is awesome. This just may be my favorite Pink Cast so far. A reminder it doesn’t take much to influence someone’s day.

  21. Walter Akana says:

    Love being introduced to this new book. Having said that, I feel the definition of meaning offered here, as well as the examples, seems trivial.

    Having said that, I think the “New York Magazine” piece referenced above does a better job. Specifically, I found this quote much more helpful: “When people say their lives are meaningful, in other words, it’s because they feel their lives have purpose, coherence, and worth.”

    Look forward to seeing this book when it’s available for Kindle.

  22. TJ says:

    Couple this 21stC version of Meaning versus Happiness with Viktor Frankls ‘Mans Search For Meaning’ .. & the world is your oyster .. or whatever you CHOOSE it to be 🙂 #viktorfranklismyhero.

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