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The Lasting Happiness And Success Formula

The Secret to Happiness

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Fig. 6. Model of Satisfaction.

The goal of ekistics is to achieve a balance between the elements of human settlements in order to guarantee happiness and safety of man.14

Doxiadis followed the ancient Greek philosophers in asking what is the good life and, by referring to Aristotle, he gave his own position on what constitutes happiness. Doxiadis believed that to survive, to live and to achieve happiness, human beings built settlements, which always followed fundamental principles, and he defined five principles in man's quest for happiness:

1. Maximum contacts. Man is continuously reaching out for a greater number of contacts (material, aesthetic, intellectual) with nature and other people and elements. This maximizing of contacts leads to the expansion of cities.

2. Minimum effort. Man tries to expend minimum effort to achieve maximum contacts and to reduce energy, time and cost to a minimum. This leads to higher densities.

3. Optimum space. Man needs optimum (but not necessarily maximum) space, whether temporary or permanent, for man as an individual or as the member of a group, for the satisfaction of his needs.

4. Quality of the environment. The quality of the environment is determined by man's relation with nature, society, shells and networks, creating a balance of the ekistic elements. The relationships within the total environment need to be optimized.

5. Optimum in the synthesis of all principles. A balanced and beneficial synthesis of the preceding principles has to be created.

These principles were combined with desirability and feasibility of the economic, social, political, technological and cultural aspects to form the model of satisfaction. Doxiadis developed studies on maximizing the amount of time one spends in good and rewarding activities and minimizing idle waste of time. These efforts lead to time allocation studies and time management in urban activities as for instance the optimization of travel time (Fig. 6).

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