X
JOIN US

Do you want to help create a happier and kinder world? If so, please join our movement, add your pledge and we'll send you practical action ideas to make a difference. By choosing to Join, you trust Action for Happiness to take care of your personal information and agree to our Privacy Policy.

I will try to create more happiness and less unhappiness in the world around me

join

news

news rss feed rss logo

Happiness: Do we have a choice?

28 Jan 2011 | Scienceline

Ludwig Wittgenstein, a famous 20th century philosopher, was miserable all his life. Depressed and anxious, he once wrote in his diary, "There is no happiness for me; no joy ever." Yet minutes before he died, he muttered: "Tell them I've had a wonderful life."

The concept of happiness is universally understood, yet escapes all comprehension. Can someone really be both unhappy everyday and happy over a lifetime? Does the notion of happiness change throughout the world, between communities, between people? Most importantly, do we have any choice in the matter?

Recent research in psychology, economics and public policy may help unravel this tangled knot of questions.

"Objective choices make a difference to happiness over and above genetics and personality," said Bruce Headey, a psychologist at Melbourne University in Australia. Headey and his colleagues analyzed annual self-reports of life satisfaction from over 20,000 Germans who have been interviewed every year since 1984. He compared five-year averages of people's reported life satisfaction, and plotted their relative happiness on a percentile scale from 1 to 100. Heady found that as time went on, more and more people recorded substantial changes in their life satisfaction. By 2008, more than a third had moved up or down on the happiness scale by at least 25 percent, compared to where they had started in 1984.

Read article here

tags

Action for Happiness

145137 followers

  • December Kindness - Day 9: Make gifts to give to people who are homeless or feeling lonely https://t.co/Cu8yrtfCZk #Do…

    yesterday 9:53am

  • Love more, worry less https://t.co/OPuJo8VEJd

    yesterday 9:53am

  • A little process each day adds up to big results https://t.co/dCvPyBe5e5

    yesterday 9:53am

  • December Kindness - Day 9: Make gifts to give to people who are homeless or feeling lonely https://t.co/Cu8yrtfCZk… https://t.co/KcrvDLkENY

    yesterday 8:08am

  • Love more, worry less https://t.co/OPuJo8VEJd

    saturday 08 dec 10:02am

  • December Kindness - Day 8: Do something helpful for a friend or family member ⭐️ https://t.co/Cu8yrtfCZk #DoGoodDecemb…

    saturday 08 dec 4:55am

  • Love and laughter are the best medicine. Friendship helps combat depression and improves cognitive abilities, particul…

    saturday 08 dec 4:55am

  • Thought for the weekend: You are enough, just as you are https://t.co/bKVSsJ9u56

    saturday 08 dec 10:32am

  • Love and laughter are the best medicine. Friendship helps combat depression and improves cognitive abilities, parti… https://t.co/gF0IP0KjXo

    saturday 08 dec 10:32am

  • December Kindness - Day 8: Do something helpful for a friend or family member ⭐️ https://t.co/Cu8yrtfCZk… https://t.co/vdJKIUe88V

    saturday 08 dec 8:14am

follow us on twitter