Happiness: What The Real Psychologists Have To Stay
Social media has become a haze of amateur psychologists. Every fitness clothing label now posts daily motivational jargon. Not convinced that is the best place to learn about happiness, I turned to the pros. I wanted to hear what real psychologists had to stay.
According to the Harvard Study of Adult Development, relationships and how happy we are in our relationships is the number one contributor to happiness. Money, career and health are helpful, but the quality of happiness is dependent on how we interact with others.
The study has been running for over 75 years, with those subjects still alive now in their 90s. A few decades in the scientists expanded their research to include the subject’s offspring; there are not over 1000 people involved at all stages of life. Some of the original participants went on to become successful businessmen, doctors, lawyers, and others ended up as schizophrenics or alcoholics. Interestingly, the education and employment had little correlation to happiness, time and time again the subject referred to their connection with family, friends and acquaintances as the number one factor.
I am a big fan of “me time”, but after listening to Robert Waldinger’s TedTalk “What makes a good life?” I plan to trade some of it in for relationship building. As well as being the director of this longest study on adult life, Robert is a Harvard psychiatrist, psychoanalyst and Zen priest.
I don’t think I can ever give up my solo walks and quiet time, but for lifelong happiness, I know I need companions in all areas of my life.
My plan? Less texting more talking. Less Netflix more shared meals. Fewer desk meals more shared walks. More quality time with the people I love.
What to learn more? Click here to listen to the TedTalk you will not be disappointed.