Economics needn’t be Dismal!

Since Carlyle bagged Malthus 180 years ago, economics has been the “Dismal Science”. Absolutely justifiable description over recent days – a deluge of dismalness from our economic scribblers and the schadenfreude media. Dairy tanking, TPP-ing, Chinese capital flooding but China not buying, Canterbury peaking, El Nino coming, confidence plummeting! Almost “putting the head in the gas oven” stuff!

There are a few antidotes to this debilitating gloom: –

1. Trust your strategies and your Risk Mitigation planning.

2. Intensify your sales and promotional activities; raise your confidence thresholds for new projects; shorten your ROI timelines. 3. Be an incorrigible optimist. You probably know by now if you are, but to make sure or to surround yourself with fellow-optimists, the Foresight Optimism test will measure your optimism attitude.

4. Do like the mouse – raise a finger to the swooping eagle.

5. Just shrug – are we back to 2008?

6. Adopt Happiness Economics. No kidding – Happiness Economics is for real!

“The economics of happiness or happiness economics is the quantitative and theoretical study of happiness, positive and negative affect, well-being, quality of life, life satisfaction and related concepts, typically combining economics with other fields such as psychology and sociology. It typically treats such happiness-related measures, rather than wealth, income or profit, as something to be maximized. The field has grown substantially since the late 20th century, for example by the development of methods, surveys and indices to measure happiness and related concepts. Its findings have been described as a challenge to the economics profession” Wikipedia.

Happiness Economics is a new science, defending itself vigorously against academic attack. Its relevance ranges widely across national measures of wealth, social security, employment, family life, freedom & control, and leisure. An especially interesting area of study is the measurement and analysis of the relationship between individual income and life satisfaction; early analysis of surveyed American earners (Kahneman & Deaton 2010) indicates another example of the Law of Diminishing Returns, where the satisfaction growth curve starts to decelerate past a USD75,000 threshold.

Thought-leading countries to adopt Happiness Economics indices among their progress criteria have included Bhutan (1972), Thailand (2007), France (2008), South Korea(2012), Dubai (2014) and UK (2014). Numerous other countries, including China, USA, Canada and Australia, are working on measuring Gross National Happiness.

For more,

I dare say we must still read the forecasts of dismal economists, but rely on our antidotes to remain Happy!