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Satisfaction facts for kids

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A satisfied customer stands by a drug store on a street in C Wellcome V0019265
A satisfied customer stands by a drug store on a street in Cairo (1850), a chromolithograph by A. Preziosi.
Envy and Self-satisfaction
Envy and Self-satisfaction, 1965, a photograph by Vitold Muratov.

Satisfaction is a pleasant or positive emotion. It can also be a feeling. It can even be a state of mind. Satisfaction is when a desire or a need is fulfilled. Satisfaction is when a person has nothing to complain about. Someone feels satisfied when they achieve a difficult goal. A person feels satisfied by accomplishment, recognition, invention and service. Someone can feel job satisfaction when they like their work. A person tends to feel satisfied by basic body functions. These can include eating and exercising. Some people feel satisfied when they get revenge for something that hurt them. Satisfaction is related to pleasure, gratification and contentment.

Satisfaction as an emotion

Humans and many other mammals feel satisfaction. Sometimes a person lacks satisfaction. They may feel negative feelings such as discontent, emptiness, boredom or sadness. This is the opposite of satisfaction. It is called dissatisfaction. Dissatisfaction occurs when we fail at doing something many times. Dissatisfaction occurs when comparing yourself to another person. This is called social comparison theory. Ongoing dissatisfaction causes complacency, apathy and even depression.

Satisfaction does not occur automatically. Satisfaction is the process of coping with life. Humans are in a constant fight against dissatisfaction. The Dalai Lama spoke about this:

"When you are discontent, you always want more, more, more. Your desire can never be satisfied. But when you practice contentment, you can say to yourself, "Oh yes—I already have everything that I really need."

If someone slips into total dissatisfaction, they might experience anguish. A person is more likely to be happy and satisfied if they learn how to control their negative experiences and to process positive thoughts. Usually, a person does not share their satisfaction with other people. That is called pride.

Satisfaction, like all emotions, is a motivator of behavior. Satisfaction is an important part of one's quality of life. In positive psychology, researchers are studying what gives a person satisfaction in life. Delayed gratification is a part of satisfaction. Delayed gratification is when a person chooses long-term rewards over immediate rewards. Delayed gratification is also when a person prioritizes long-term objectives over closer targets. When a person delays gratification, they feel satisfied.

Psychologists say that life satisfaction and well-being are the two main ingredients of happiness.

Satisfaction and happiness

Satisfaction is different from happiness. Satisfaction refers to a particular situation or state of mind. Satisfaction is often temporary. Happiness is a prolonged condition.

Satisfaction and hedonism

Satisfaction is different from hedonism. A hedonist seeks pleasure or enjoyment above everything else. Satisfaction is not about doing things simply to feel pleasure. Satisfaction is not self-indulgent.

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