an interesting article on what makes people happy

Discussion in 'Mental Health Disorders' started by bleach, Mar 9, 2008.

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  1. bleach

    bleach Well-Known Member

    LONDON (Reuters) - You can't buy happiness but it looks like you can at least inherit it, British and Australian researchers said on Thursday.

    A study of nearly 1,000 pairs of identical and non-identical twins found genes control half the personality traits that make people happy while factors such as relationships, health and careers are responsible for the rest of our well-being.

    "We found that around half the differences in happiness were genetic," said Tim Bates, a researcher at the University of Edinburgh who led the study. "It is really quite surprising."

    The researchers asked the volunteers -- ranging in age from 25 to 75 -- a series of questions about their personality, how much they worried and how satisfied they were with their lives.

    Because identical twins share the same genes and fraternal twins do not, the researchers could identify common genes that result in certain personality traits and predispose people to happiness.

    People who are sociable, active, stable, hardworking and conscientious tend to be happier, the researchers reported in the journal Psychological Science.

    "What this study showed was that the identical twins in a family were very similar in personality and in well-being, and by contrast, the fraternal twins were only around half as similar," Bates said. "That strongly implicates genes."

    The findings are an important piece of the puzzle for researchers trying to better understand depression and what makes different people happy or unhappy, Bates said.

    People with positive inherited personality traits may, in effect, also have a reserve of happiness to draw on in stressful times, he said.

    "An important implication is that personality traits of being outgoing, calm and reliable provide a resource, we called it 'affective reserve,' that drives future happiness" Bates said.

    (Reporting by Michael Kahn; Editing by Maggie Fox and Mary Gabriel)
     
  2. ToHelp

    ToHelp Well-Known Member

    Thanks, Bleach!

    That's kind of... depressing though. :tongue:

    The reverse conclusion is that some people are just born to be depressed. It's genetic.

    I'll think on it.

    ToHelp
     
  3. Hurted

    Hurted Well-Known Member

    Tnx for posting
     
  4. perry_mason

    perry_mason Well-Known Member

    or how about

    Money buys happiness -- if you spend on someone else

    Money can buy happiness, but only if you spend it on someone else, researchers reported on Thursday.

    Spending as little as $5 a day on someone else could significantly boost happiness, the team at the University of British Columbia and Harvard Business School found.

    http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSN2042446720080320?&sp=true
     
  5. ToHelp

    ToHelp Well-Known Member

    Thx for that Perry. Genetics aside then, philanthropy trumps self-indulgence.

    Especially people in the Western world can do well to learn this.

    I also just adore the "pay it forward" concept, though these movements never last, tending to fall prey to mankind's innate selfishness. Oh well.

    I'm 44 and having learned the sheer rewards of giving some time ago, I leap at every chance (such as Farm Fresh's Round It Up program--I wish they could have it year-round!)

    Anyway, I created a reciprocating link. If ever there were a right time, this is it! :smile:

    ToHelp
     
  6. bleach

    bleach Well-Known Member

    Maybe that's my problem, I don't giv enough money. I'm always thinking about it but I rarely follow through
     
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