What are the Characteristics of a Delightful Moment?

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Our fund is focused on the new tech vectors for happiness, which we define as companies that can deliver, into the lives of individuals, delightful moments. We define delightful moments as those small, but powerful, separations from the daily humdrum that have been part of human experience since time immemorial. They are the moments when we feel a bit happier, calmer, more confident, in control, energetic or in tune with the greater world around us.

But that definition, as much as we love it, doesn’t tell the full story. It describes what makes an experience delightful, but it doesn’t really uncover what makes an experience a moment.

We see three essential elements for Delightful Moments:

Choice. A Delightful Moment must be something an individual chooses. Fluoridating the water, while it may improve health, can’t be either Delightful or a Moment because nobody chose it for themselves, nor do individuals think about it as part of their lives. It is simply in the background. To be Delightful, the experience of a moment must be chosen by a person among all the possibilities available. This choice is Delightful for me; another may be Delightful for you.

Change. A Delightful Moment brings about a notable change of state, in either the person or the person’s context. It is an experience separate from the norm. To be delightful, a moment must create a notable shift in experience or perception. Time must slow down, senses must be uplifted, experiences outside of the norm must become possible. On the physical side, I must feel….excellent, energetic,  rested, lusty, or in some other way at the peak of physical sensation. This would, of course, include the elimination of the negative: I feel free from pain. I have put my fear and anxiety at a distance. These are the fundamental shifts for individual delight.

Coherence. Coherence is what makes a delightful experience a Moment. A Moment must have a distinct beginning, middle and end. It is of a piece. As a result, it can be chosen again and again; the experience is available as the individual chooses, or not. It is the bounded and cyclical nature of Delightful Moments that imbues them with their unique power. They are like a palette of colors, where I can choose the one that feels best right now, or like an array of flavors, where different ones will suit my mood or circumstances at different times. They could become part of my regular routine or remain exceptional and rare selections.

To paraphrase the oh so popular current advertisement, I may not always drink Dos Equis, but when I do, it is…..delightful.