How do you get Happy as an Audiophile?

There’s an interesting, relatively modern take on mental health called Positive Psychology. While not without it’s faults and detractors, PP has a very interesting approach. Instead of asking questions on the axis of illness and diagnosis PP asks questions on the scale of happiness:

What is it that makes you more or less content with your life and in your pursuits? How can these actions, events or states be codified and applied as general principles?

In the spirit of PP then I ask:

How do you get happy? What advice would you give an audiophile that asks "What is satisfying about being an audiophile, and what are the approaches that get me there? Do you personally know the answers for yourself? "


3 ways:

When it sounds so good I can't help but smile, and sometimes shout OMG out loud.

When a visitor hears a 'real' system for the first time. I love watching their faces, I've even had people cry.

Sometimes I'll buy hundreds of records or CD's at estate sales. I love it when I hear some new (to me) artist that blows me away. I once scored 12 feet of records for $50. Took me over a year to go through them, but my horizons were expanded because music before 1960 couldn't be good, right? Wrong!

Answer to OP question:

Remember that music is a goal but so is sound and it's ok to like both.

Don't feel guilty about wanting to tweak, change, play with things if this done in the spirit of experiment and tinkering.

Worry when it becomes a quixotic and desperate quest for realism with a capital R.

I like @reubent 's response. I can only add that I like listening to the different "flavors" imparted by equipment I own while expanding more and more into DIY and vintage restoration type projects.  Learning more and more about audio, electronics and acoustics as @mahgister alluded to is also a real high. It doesn't take so much money to be this sort of audiophile and it returns a lot of satisfaction. O and I like the endless supply of new sounds available these days from's just a dream come true.