25 facts about happiness.


Science is super fantastic. The fact that people in chic white lab coats can tell us stuff about the nature of the universe is SO EFFING AWESOME. Seriously, if our cave-dwelling forebears could see us now,¬†hypothesizing and empiricizing and dissertizing. We’re so fancy.

Happiness is an area that science is just beginning to hone in on, so really, it’s an infant in the grand scheme of scientific disciplines. Nonetheless, the past couple of decades have revealed a ton of interesting factoids about everyone’s favorite emotional state. And because I love science, I want to share some of these factoids with you. This is a happiness blog, so duh. ūüėČ

Here are 25 facts about happiness, as backed by research:

25. As much as 40% of our happiness is under our control.¬†That’s a lot.

24. When it comes to happiness, it really is better to give than to receive.

23. Youth isn’t everything. Life satisfaction is ranked higher for older adults.¬†

22. Happiness is contagious. 

21. Aerobic and resistance exercise enhance your mood.

20. Being your own boss makes you happier.¬†You’d have to earn¬†more than twice¬†as much money to be as happy working for someone else as you would be working for yourself.

19. Social connections are a cornerstone of happiness. 

18. Your happiness levels can change. 

17. Meditation can make you¬†happier, less stressed¬†and even — nicer.¬†

16. Happiness fuels success, not the other way around. 

15. Only 10% of your happiness is dependent on external circumstances.

14. A 3:1 ratio of positive to negative emotions predicts whether you’ll flourish or languish.

13. According to the orchid-gene hypothesis, the most difficult. troubled people may have the most potential for happiness. 

12. Money can’t buy happiness. While happiness does increase with income, that only applies up to¬†$75,000 per year. After that, money has no effect on positive affect.

11. Happy people live longer.

10. Happiness is correlated with the development of antibodies, resistance to heart disease, diabetes and upper respiratory infections.

9. Laughter boosts mood (and makes a hell of a medicine).

8. Living near green spaces leads to better mental health. 

7. Mastering a new skill leads to happiness in the long term (and stress in the short term).

6. Sharing/showing gratitude for positive experiences boosts happiness and life satisfaction.

5. Dancing ups your happiness and mental health (yet how often do most of us do it)?

4. Getting touched and touching makes you healthier, happier and less anxious.

3. Engaging in a random act of kindness enhances your happiness.¬†I recommend doing ’em on the daily!

2. Cultivating compassion makes you happier, kinder and less worried. 

1. America doesn’t generally rank among the world’s happiest countries. Denmark, Norway and Switzerland¬†(and according to other rankings, Paraguay, Panama and Guatemala) usually do.

Any other happiness facts you wanna share? Add ’em in the comments!

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