Seperti inikah bentuk “perayaan” tahun barumu?
Penting juga utk memulai tahun baru dengan a small festive with nuclear family, to boost your spirit for the 365 days ahead
Tapi mungkin sedikit dari kita yg memilih utk melihat gambar ini dan merenungkannya dalam2: what does it take to enable me to reach the same destination as theirs? Living a long and (seemingly) happy life?
Dalam refleksi saya, perayaan tahun Baru berarti menegaskan komitmen akan pentingnya dan mengartikulasikan kembali resolusi utk menjaga kewarasan berpikir dan bertutur, serta menjaga kesehatan jasmani dan mental: let us enhance a more thorough happiness will you?
The Blue Zones of Happiness: Lessons from the World’s Happiest People karya Dan Buettner (2017) bisa menjadi titik berangkat refleksi yg menarik di awal tahun yg baru. Riset belasan tahun yg dilakukan Buettner, dan sudah menghasilkan beberapa buku seperti The Blue Zones: Lessons for Living Longer From the People Who’ve Lived the Longest; Thrive: Finding Happiness the Blue Zones Way; dan The Blue Zones Solution: Eating and Living Like the World’s Healthiest People, menunjukkan bahwa sejumlah orang di dunia ini, misalnya mereka yang hidup di kota Aalborg di Denmark, negara Singapore, dan wilayah Kartago di negara Kosta Rika, menjalani hidup secara “healthiest, happiest, & most long-lasting lives.”
Hidup yang memuaskan dan membahagiakan dapat didesain bersama dan bukan jatuh dari langit begitu saja. Berdasarkan riset empiris dan pendalamannya secara kualitatif, hidup yang membahagiakan bukanlah hidup yang bergelimang harta atau melulu mengejar cuan dan cuan. Buettner menyebut kawasan yang di dalamnya tinggal orang-orang yang paling bahagia ini sebagai “Blue zones.” Istilah ini merujuk pada daerah-daerah yang, dengan ritual dan desain tertentu untuk menjalani hidup, angka harapan hidup dan rata2 usia orang yang hidup di dalamnya relatif lebih panjang daripada di belahan bumi yg lain.
Kita dapat belajar dari mereka.
Misalnya, berikut saran Buettner (2017) untuk menjalani hidup bahagia seperti yang diamati di Kosta Rika:
1. Develop daily social rituals. Costa Ricans are good at creating happy moments every day, with no need for special occasions. Friends get together to watch soccer, play music, prepare carne asada—barbecue—with family or neighbors, drink beer, and tell lots of jokes.
Lessons: Live close to your friends or make friends of your neighbors. Organize impromptu happy hours, pot lucks, or backyard cookouts. Remember, people are happiest on the days when they socialize five to six hours. Being with others also enhances or prioritizes other activities, such as work, eating, watching TV, or doing housework.
2. Enjoy special “little” days. Women get together with girlfriends once a week to bond, laugh, and gossip on what they call martesitos, miercolitos, or juevecitos—little Tuesdays, little Wednesdays, or little Thursdays. For working women, it’s usually in the early evening. For stay-at-home moms, it’s often midday. Considered “their time,” such get-togethers keep relationships healthy and vibrant.
Lessons: Join a book club, walking club, or Bible study club—or create one. Set up one time a week when you invite over your best, most committed friends. Make it a ritual. Most of us don’t socialize enough to optimize our happiness.
3. Establish a weekly family ritual. Costa Rican families traditionally gather for meals on Saturdays or Sundays. They might get together for a late lunch, after which the kids will peel off to play while adults loll around the table for conversation. Or people might come early for Sunday dinner and stay late. The key is that they include grandparents, parents, sons, daughters, in-laws, cousins, and close family friends—so the conversations are intergenerational, lively, and often laced with humor.
Lessons: Set up a weekly family dinner and invite your extended family. If you don’t have many relatives nearby or if your family is boring, invite friends who will make the dinner interesting. Cook good food, be a good host, and make it fun so people will come back. A strongly connected family can serve as not only a social network but also a safety net for when times get tough.
4. Eat together at work. At the Cartago Market, vendors close their stands at noon to gather around La Marisquería, a seafood restaurant, to enjoy the famous fish soup, rice, and beans. There they blend shop talk, family news, soccer stories, and jokes. These guys are not only refueling their bodies but also their souls.
Lessons: Resist the temptation to eat at your desk. Invite your co-workers out to lunch or organize a brown bag group. Talk to your employer about a company policy that favors co-workers eating together.
5. Try a daily dose of humor. Although Costa Ricans suffer the same hardships as the rest of us, they use humor to get by. When news about a corrupt politician makes people angry, social media erupts in jokes within minutes.
Lessons: Read the comics as well as the op-ed pages. Watch a funny video on Facebook or YouTube. It can reduce stress as effectively as 20 minutes on a treadmill—and lift your spirits.
6. Practice your faith. The vast majority of Costa Ricans are Roman Catholics, especially in Cartago, which is home to the Virgen de los Angeles, the country’s patron saint. Locals will tell you that their faith provides them with a sense of purpose and helps to ease the impact of life’s hardships. For many, weekly mass is a chance to downshift and shed stress. Their best friends are church friends.
Lessons: If you have a religion, practice it. If you don’t, try out a few places of worship to see if any resonate with you.
7. Eat six servings of fruits and vegetables a day. The Cartago market glistens with fruits and vegetables, from papayas and mangoes to beets, cabbage, and yucca. Produce is fresh, cheap, delicious, and accessible year-round—a daily source of nutrition and pleasure.
Lessons: Eat at least six servings of fruits and vegetables daily. Not only will this improve your health, it will also boost your happiness. Research shows that people who go from no fruit or produce in their diets to eight servings a day experienced a bump in their well-being equivalent to getting a new job.
8. Shop for groceries daily. People don’t sit around in Cartago, waiting for Amazon to deliver their groceries. Most people walk to the market daily, where they exchange gossip and pleasantries with their favorite vendors and friends, returning home with the freshest foods possible.
Lessons: Get your daily fix of social interaction, physical activity, and fresh produce by walking to your local grocery store. All three of these are ingredients for day-by-day happiness.
9. Embrace generosity. Costa Ricans have a saying, Dios se lo paga, which means that what you give in this life, God will pay back in the next. Studies show that generosity pays off, no matter where you live. (Case in point: Researchers at the University of Oregon found that when they gave people $100, participants were happier when they gave it away than when they spent it on themselves.)
Lessons: Most of us will die with money, so share it now. Be the first to pick up the check at meals, give to charity, and overtip.
10. Boost happiness in the workplace: the Cartago Code. The 120 or so vendors at the central produce market in Cartago observe an unspoken code of conduct that makes for not only good business but also a happy workplace. These men and women spend their careers selling specialty produce—often right next to a stall selling the exact same thing, and they all abide by these implicit rules.
Akhirul kata, saran sederhana berikut merangkum hal2 yg dianggap dapat meningkatkan kebahagiaan individual (warga negara) dan kualitas pengambilan keputusan oleh para pemimpin komunitas, bangsa dan negara:
“Something to do, someone to love, something to give, and something to look forward to.”