7 Rules for Happiness

Scott H. Young
7 min readApr 25, 2024

Happiness is a paradoxical goal. We all want to be happy, yet we often fail spectacularly at predicting what will make us happy.

We pursue goals like wealth, fitness, status and mastery only to find that achieving them doesn’t really change our lives very much. In contrast, we often deliberately make ourselves miserable: we worry about things we cannot control, hold grudges against people we cannot influence, and spend time on activities we don’t truly value.

I don’t claim to have discovered the recipe for perpetual bliss, but from my decidedly unenlightened perspective, I have found a few maxims that have made my life better that I’d like to share:

1. Embrace the seasons of your life.

Unhappiness is wishing you could be at the beach when it is snowing. You can’t control the weather, and daydreaming about a possibility that isn’t practical doesn’t make you better off.

A major philosophical tension in the pursuit of happiness is the conflict between accepting things as they are and striving to change them for the better. There is a third way: accepting the broadly unchangeable factors of your life while seeking to make the most of the things under your control.

Weather is an apt analogy for this. Every phase of life is a season that affords some…



Scott H. Young

Author of WSJ best selling book: Ultralearning www.scotthyoung.com | Twitter: @scotthyoung