Everyone has the same goal: to be happy. Every single thing you do, every product you purchase, every restaurant you visit, every song you listen to, every place you go is an attempt to increase your happiness.

That’s powerful knowledge. Once you recognize it, it gives you new insight into your own motivations. In any given decision, you’re evaluating which option will contribute to your happiness more. In the most difficult decisions, you’re often forced to choose between something that will provide short-term happiness (e.g., eating that donut or watching that TV show) and something that will contribute to your long-term happiness (e.g., not eating that donut or going for a jog).

It’s critical to be brutally honest with yourself. “Am I trading long-term happiness for short-term happiness?”