The way people hold the belief that a fun-filled， pain-free lifestyle equals happiness actually reduces their chances of ever obtaining real happiness. If fun and pleasure are equal to happiness，then pain must be equal to unhappiness. But in fact，the opposite is true： more often than not things that lead to happiness contain some pain.
As a result，many people avoid the very attempts that are the source of true happiness.They fear the pain inevitably （不可避免地） brought by such things as marriage，raising children，professional achievement， religious commitment， self-improvement.
Ask a bachelor why he resists marriage even though he finds dating to be less and less satisfying. If he is honest，he will tell you that he is afraid of making a commitment，for commitment is in fact quite painful. The single life is filled with fun， adventure and excitement.Marriage has such moments，but they are not its most distinguishing features.
Couples，with infant children， are lucky to get a whole night's sleep of a three-day vacation. We don't know any parent who would choose the word fun to describe raising children. But couples that decide not to have children ever know the joys of watching a child grow up or playing with a grandchild.
Understanding and accepting that true happiness has nothing to do with fun is one of the most liberating realizations. It liberates time： now we can devote more hours to activities that can really increase our happiness. It liberates money：buying that new car or those fancy clothes to increase our happiness now seems pointless. And it liberates us from envy：we now understand that all those who always have so much fun actually may not be happy at all.