In 1984, twenty-eight-year-old Ted Leonsis had just sold as early New Media company that he'd built for $60 million. Then, in fulfillment of the randomness of life, he got on the wrong plane. A routine flight from Mebourne, Florida, to Atalnta, Georgia, ended with an emergency landing. No one was hurt, but in the thirty-five minutes that Ted spent unsure of whether the landing gear was going to work, circling the airport, burning off fuel, and learning how to brace for a crash-landing, he had to face up to something he really didn't like: if that plane crashed, he wouldn't die happy.
It was the most important discovery of his life. The moment Ted got off that plane, with shaking knees and a queasy stomach, he resolved to pursue happiness and live his life without regret. Ted detemined that when his time to die really did arrive, he would die happy.
The only problem was, like many people, he didn't really know how to become happy. He'd figured out how to make money and grow a business. But when it came to figuring out something so basic – so human – as knowing what steps one takes first on the journey to happiness, he was amazingly clueless.
So Ted decided to play to his strengths and treat his pursuit of happiness as if it were a business plan. He also decided to conduct some research of his own along the way by publishing his Happiness Questionnaire online.
Now you can join the more than 3,500 people took the survey and match your own answers with that of the happy cohort who've gone before you by visiting:
Ted Leonsis is an Internet industry pioneer who helped build AOL into a global phenomenon. He is a serial entrepreneur who has built and sold multiple successful businesses over three decades, culminating with the recent sale of Revolution Money to American Express. Originally from Brooklyn, New York, and later, Lowell, Massachusetts, he now lives in Mclean, Virginia and Vero Beach, Florida, with his wife and two children.
Piatkus publishes The Business of Happiness in September.