To help people feel like they are in control of their own lives, those economic policies should respect the autonomy of individuals and communities to make their own decisions whenever possible, since individual freedom is a factor that contributes to a satisfying life.
“Ultimately, life satisfaction is something more than just happiness. Sometimes, difficult choices can open the doors to future opportunities, and the short-run pain is worth the long-run gain,” Bernanke said. “Just as importantly, life satisfaction requires an ethical framework. Everyone requires such a framework for satisfaction. In the short run, it is possible that doing the ethical thing will make you feel, well, unhappy. In the long run, it is essential for a satisfying and well-balanced life.”
In the front row Saturday morning at the Colonial Life Arena, Jessica Steele and Kelly Scriven were getting ready to receive the interdisciplinary degree from the South Carolina Honors College, a rigorous program that allows students to create a major program of study customized to their future career goals. The two classmates had worked together to design an outreach program in Columbia’s Waverly community to encourage healthy behaviors among children living in the neighborhood. They put together a documentary film to highlight their work and the need for public-health education for children.