Are we on a hedonistic treadmill?
Are we on a pleasure-seeking treadmill, vainly trying to achieve happiness by seeking what’s just around the corner - a better relationship, an easier job, a nicer car? Our nervous systems quickly adapt to anything familiar. Once you get a nice new car, how long do we enjoy it before thinking about renovating your home? Studies show that most lottery winners are ultimately no happier than nonwinners, and paraplegics usually become as content as people who can walk. For better or worse, we adapt to both good and bad life events. Because our bodies react to psychological threats the same way they react to physical threats, a sense of constant danger raises our overall stress level and the risk of heart disease, immune dysfunction, depression, colitis, chronic pain, memory impairment, sexual problems, and much more.