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昔日“全球排名最幸福的人”如今过的怎样?

2014-05-06    来源:chinadaily    【      美国外教 在线口语培训

Is Alvin Wong, 2010's 'Happiest Man In America,' still happy?

2010年《纽约时报》请盖洛普为基于年度盖洛普幸福指数评出的“全美最幸福的人”颁奖。

In 2010, The New York Times asked Gallup to dub "The Happiest Man In America" based on its annual Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index. The answer, as the Times reported at the time: “a tall, Asian-American, observant Jew who is at least 65 and married, has children, lives in Hawaii, runs his own business and has a household income of more than $120,000 a year,” specifically, Alvin Wong.

Today, judging by 2013's well-being results, Hawaii is still one of the country's happiest states, but it recently dropped from the top spot (down to eighth) for the first time in four years.

Given Hawaii's recent slip, we wondered if America's Happiest Man -- now 72 years old and working for a home care agency aiding seniors in his community -- is still just as happy. After all, four years ago, Wong was launched into the public eye and forced to contemplate why his simple, happy life was such an anomaly.

Wong didn't think much about his happiness before being dubbed something of an expert on the topic. "Everybody would ask me the same question," he tells The Huffington Post. "What is the secret to your happiness? And at first it was amusing, but a part of this is really sad. People from all over the world called. 'Give me the secret so that tonight I’m going to be very happy for the rest of my life.' It struck me, first, as funny, but then as sad."

The 5-foot-10 Wong lived, as he still does, in a stuccoed house in the university neighborhood of Manoa with his wife, Trudy, and dog, Samuel Sprocket. His two children are in their 30s; his son lives in Washington, D.C., and his daughter lives in Honolulu.

After being given the label of the country's happiest man, Wong says he felt a certain responsibility to be more introspective about his happiness and good fortune. He considers the title both an honor and a duty, and has pursued a second career in motivational speaking.

"People are looking for a quick fix," Wong says of his many questioners. "But it doesn't happen like that. Like marriage or anything else, you've got to work at it."

Wong says the mantra that kept him happy before the fame still works for him today. "Since being named the happiest man in America, I've done a lot of reading and research on this stuff," he says. "I learned about myself ... And I think, for my own sake, I've come to terms with what is the secret to my happiness. It's attitude."

Wong -- in the way only a happy, self-assured person can -- boils it down to basics. Remembering a convention for people with disabilities, Wong notes that the audience, not the invited speaker, was most inspiring. "They've come to realize," he said about the people he met, "'If I don't have a positive attitude, then I'm going to have a very rotten life.' It's either a rotten life, or try to create a positive attitude. So they work at it."

Working to maintain a positive attitude, Wong says, is the foundation for happiness, especially his. After that, he notes that balance and prioritizing are necessary building blocks.

"If you have a family, your family has to come before anything else," he notes. No matter how many jobs or how menial the labor, Wong stresses that approaching work with a positive attitude will make all the difference. "It should be the most important job to you. It's important because you are working to support your family. It's important because you're keeping yourself busy instead of just wallowing around, saying 'woe is me.'" Working, he notes, can and should be therapeutic.

Wong certainly doesn't show any signs of slowing down. In addition to his motivational speaking, he maintains an herb garden and loves to cook Asian cuisine and barbecue for the neighboring university students (but says his wife does it better).


He says clarity comes the moment you realize that it's OK to not be the smartest or even the happiest person in the world, and when you learn to accept your mistakes.

It's not his unique demographic make-up, he says, that makes him happy. "Every day," he says matter-of-factly, "I [take] one step forward and I'm very happy doing that."

相关内容

当时《纽约时报》是这么描述的“一位高大的亚裔美国人,有孩子,已婚,至少65岁的典型犹太教徒,住在夏威夷,有自己的事业,家庭年收入超过12万美元。”他就是阿尔文·王。

现在,根据2013年的幸福结果,夏威夷依然是这个国家最幸福的城市之一,但是最近它没能保住榜首之位(掉到了第八位)。这可是四年来的首次。

鉴于近期夏威夷地位的下滑,我们想知道全美最幸福的人——现年72岁却任然服务于一家为社区的老人们提供服务的机构的人——是否依然幸福。4年前,王进入了公众的视线,人们也开始思考为什么他的简单并且幸福生活是如此的与众不同。

在被称为这方面的专家之前王没怎么思考过他的幸福之源。“每个人都问我同样的问题,”他告诉《赫芬顿邮报》。“幸福的秘诀是什么?起初这些问题让我觉得很好笑,但是现在觉得这真的是一种悲哀。全世界的人都在呼吁‘告诉我幸福的秘诀,这样我就可以幸福的度过余生。’这让我很受触动,心情也由好笑变成了难过。”

身高5' 10"英尺(178cm)的王和妻子特鲁迪、小狗萨缪尔·斯伯克特依然住在马诺阿大学附近的一间灰泥墙房子里。他的两个孩子都30多岁了,儿子住在华盛顿,女儿住在火奴鲁鲁。

在被贴上全美最幸福的人的标签后,王说他有一种责任感,这种责任感让他对幸福和好运有了更深入的思考。他认为这个头衔既是一直荣誉,也代表了一种责任。因此他投身励志演讲作为第二职业。

“人们都在寻找一种快速疗法,”王回答提问者们时说道,“但是这是不可能的,就像婚姻或者其他的事情,你需要用心经营。”

王说以前让他幸福的咒语现在依然有效,“从被称为全美最幸福的人后我做了很多这方面的阅读和研究,”他说,“我在了解我自己……我想对我自己来说,让我幸福的秘密就是态度。”

快乐、自信的王以他特有的方式发现了幸福的本质。在一场为残疾人召开的大会上,王注意到最令人启发的并非受邀演讲嘉宾,而是那些听众。他这样描述那些听众——“他们逐渐意识到,'如果我没有积极的生活态度,我的生活就会堕落'。要么过一种堕落的生活,要么尝试积极的态度。所以他们开始改变。”

王认为积极的生活态度是幸福的基础,对他来说尤为如此。他还注意到,内心的平衡与分清轻重缓急是打造幸福基础的必要基石。

“如果你有家庭,家庭必须重于一切”。无论你的工作有多忙,无论你的工作有多平凡,当你以积极地态度工作时,一切都将不同。保持积极的态度才是最重要的工作。“你要赚钱养家,你要保持忙碌避免无所事事还整天抱怨‘我是个杯具’。”工作是一件有利与身心的事情。

当然,王没有表现出任何懈怠。除了励志演讲,他还建了个香草园,而且热衷于为邻近的大学生做亚洲菜和烤肉(据说他的妻子厨艺更好)。

他说,当你学着承认你的错误时,或当你意识到即使成不了世界上最聪明或最幸福的人也没什么的时候,你会豁然开朗。

并不是他独特的身份背景让他变得幸福,“每天,”王承认,“我都会进步一点点,这让我很快乐。”


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