Can you really measure happiness? Evidently the AARP, in a new study conducted by Hearts + Minds Strategies, suggest that we can indeed measure happiness. And it suggests we can identify the factors that contribute most to feelings of contentment.

Researchers polled 4,000 adults from 35 to 80 across the country. 68% reported feeling happy, overall levels of happiness seemed to be declining. Six trends emerge from the results.

Are you in your early 50s? If so, you might be at a low point!

People between 50 and 55 were the least likely to say they were happy. The strain of paying tuition for college for their children while simultaneously caring for aging parents seems to be problematic for this age group. But, relax, by your late sixties, you may be happy again.

Are you healthy? You might be happy if you are healthy?

People who report being happy also seem to be health. Heath and happiness seems to correlate. Apparently happiness helps with your health.

Do you have friends? Do you see your family?

Relationships seem to be the most important factor for happiness. 72% of those responding said that watching loved ones succeed and showing a loved one how much they care contributed significantly to feelings of happiness.

Do you have pets? Real pets are better than online friends!

Having a relationship with a pet was found to be vital to happiness! This is especially true for single people and older women. Of interest is that when ranking 38 activities, the respondents ranked social media connections at 37th place in importance for happiness. What does this say about all our dependence on social media?

Money, money, money . . . can you buy happiness?

Happiness does seem to increase with income, but less than a third of those polled said money made them happy.

Do you control your own happiness?

Having a sense of control over your personal happiness tends to increase with age. Those who feel in control are also more than twice as happy as those who feel that happiness is not something over which they have control.

In summary, what is it for you? Is it your age, your money, your pets, or your friends? What makes you happy? Seems like a choice worth of making . . . choosing happiness!


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Based on an article by Home Care Assistance.


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