Happiness is very abstract and difficult to explain. However, scientist have been trying to find the key to being happy for many years. This post shows three of the latest scientific researches about happiness.
1. The key to our happiness is connection not competition
This is something I always teach in yoga as it is the most basic principle of the philosophy. Yoga IS connection. I think connection can be related to happiness in a broader meaning, not only connection with other people but the connection between our mind, body and soul.
The research focus more on cooperation and helping others.
“In workplaces, research from Adam Grant, professor of management at the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School shows that “givers” – people who help others without seeking anything in return – are more successful in the long term than “takers” – who try to maximise benefits for themselves, rather than others. For society as a whole, the World Happiness Report 2013, a major global study, found that two of the strongest explanatory factors for national wellbeing are levels of social support and generosity. Our success as a society directly depends on the extent to which we see each other as a source of support rather than a source of threat.”
2. Life improves with age
This research will give you hope if you’re going through a difficult time, especially with your significant other.
“Research studies compiled at Buffalo University and Northwestern University followed 156 aging couples for 20 years focusing on the affects of aging and happiness. They found that these older couples argued much less and were more likely to agree to disagree instead of fight. It seems that as people age they learn how to direct their energy and attitudes better and feel less of a need to be right, and more of a need for peace and harmony.”
“Another study published in the Journal of Social Psychological and Personality Science followed 198,888 people from 83 countries and found that as people age, there is an increase in trust. This trust translates into a higher level of well being and general happiness.”
3. Chatting with strangers can make you happier
Most people like to keep to themselves during their morning commute but this study shows that we might be missing on the opportunity of a more pleasant experience.
“While participants predicted their ride would be more enjoyable sitting in solitude, the research team found the exact opposite — those asked to engage in conversation reported a more positive, and no less productive, experience.”