The pursuit of happiness is an unalienable right in this country. Everyone has their definition of what it is to them. For some it’s financial resources, others its the company of good friends. In reality, it’s often a combination of factors that lead to the least amount of stress in your life and elevate your mood. In order briefly cover this broad subject, let’s discuss some of these different factors and why some people value certain things over others.
- Money can buy happiness. Sometimes. Nearly 3/4 of Americans report finances as being a major stressor in their lives. Naturally, take away this stress, and become a happier person. However, money’s stress relieving powers caps off at $75,000 according to studies by Nobel laureate psychologist and economist Dr. Daniel Kahneman, after which, additional income has no effect on personal well-being.
- Relationships can be both beneficial and detrimental to ones mental health depending upon the dynamic. Think of the people you surround yourself with. Are you constantly competing with them, or are you on a team, cheering for one another to do their best. If you relate closer to the former, consider whether these people are worth having around. It’s always difficult to lose someone close to you, but you will find your happiness increasing with the cleanse of negativity that used to surround you.
- Age can greatly affect your happiness. People going through a “midlife crisis” have higher rates of depression and report more stress than any other age group. However, once you make it past mid-life, happiness goes back up, with people in their sixties and seventies reporting being just as happy as young people, according to a from the University of Warwick.