Eudaimonia, or Human Flourishing

The Greeks were talking about #livingmybestlife long before it was a hashtag. They just called it something a little more refined: eudaimonia, the idea that happiness or personal well-being is the chief good for man. Aristotle viewed eudaimonia as an active state and held to the notion that living well consists in doing, not simply being.

I’ve always been fascinated by the idea that our work actively contributes to human flourishing, that our “daily grind” might actually be having an impact on the individual and collective good -- even if that impact is a few steps removed from our day-to-day work.

There are the obvious examples of charity and non-profit groups, who directly dedicate time and resources to eliminating poverty, advocating for equality, and fighting for justice in the world. Or doctors and scientists, who use their knowledge and skills to heal the sick, cure disease, and create innovative solutions to medical issues.

But the knee-jerk reaction is to equate “making a difference” with philanthropy, when in fact all disciplines and endeavors can have positive human consequences. The entrepreneur with a stroke-of-brilliance idea ultimately creates jobs, which impacts economic growth. The software developer coding apps ultimately extends an organization’s reach beyond just the immediate community. The environmental engineer chasing down permits for remediation is ultimately impacting living conditions that keep us healthy.

NeedleMover exists to share these stories, and to learn from them.

We are not about headline guests or famous corporations. It’s not about followers, downloads, or page views.

We are about drawing out the narratives of individuals and organizations who are making a difference, big or small, and who are advocates for everyone to experience eudaimonia. And the hope is that you will learn, and consider: what are you doing? What do you want to do to take a step into impact?

How do you want to move the needle?