The Components of Satisfaction

On the basis of the unexamined life not being worth living (not to mention that an unlived life is not worth examining), yet another set of philosophical building blocks, for the overexamination of one's unhappiness (or otherwise).

Thesis: Satisfaction is the result of the Four Cs:

Consequentiality, Competence, Control and Commitment

Consequentialityis the degree to which we see what we do as important and relevant.

Competencereflects how well we feel we can do what we do.
This is a matter of perception. We set our own expectations, modified by feedback from other people and, occasionally (but very seldom), by objective measures. We all have our own opinions of how well we are doing, modified by our self-confidence and our perception of the co-operation we are getting from others.

Controlis the degree to which we feel in charge of what we are doing.

Commitmentis about our passion for what we do, about how much we care.
Commitment is a multiplier. If the other Cs are present, strong commitment increases the quality of our lives: we feel good when we are doing a good job of something we care about. If, however, commitment is strong but we feel that we can't do the job because other Cs are missing, we're going to be far more frustrated than if we just didn't care.