Why can’t we have happy workplaces?

A: Why are you working so hard?
B: To earn more money.
A: Why do you want to earn more money?
B: To have a bigger house; to buy more stuff; to travel around the world …
A: Why do you want to have a bigger house, buy more stuff, travel around the world …?
B: Then I’ll be happy.
A: Why do you want to be happy?
B: ……
A: Why do you want to be happy?
B: I want to be happy because I want to be happy.

“Happiness is the meaning and the purpose of life, the whole aim and end of human existence.” – Aristotle

This is a question that has plagued my mind for years: We human beings want to be happy. If happiness is an important goal of life, and since we spend so much at work every day, why do few people care about making work and workplaces happy?
Why do people accept that work has to be drudgery? Why are so many workplaces full of frustration and resentment? Why do we have to wait until that weekend, or that long leave, or early retirement, in order to be happy? Why can’t we be happy every day of the week, even when we are at work?

All we need to do is to use our human wisdom, and redesign work and the workplace so that going to work is joy every day. I believe that we humans have enough wisdom to do that. And yet, while we acknowledge the importance of happiness, we allow ourselves to continue to suffer for so much of the time!

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