Science of Happiness

Join Emily as she talks about the science behind your happiness!
Hi, my name is Emily Carter and I’m a web marketer at WebFX. Today, I’m going to be talking about the science of happiness and what data and biology can reveal about our moods. In this video, we’ll take a look at what Mazlow’s Hierarchy of Needs reveals about happiness, which countries are the happiest, and factors that can increase and reduce happiness.

Abraham Mazlow is one of the earliest psychologists to focus on the psychology of happy people, and he developed the well-known hierarchy of needs. According to Mazlow, happiness can only be achieved once our basic needs for food, security, love and self-esteem are satisfied.

Only then can we experience purpose and inner potential. Mazlow studied happy people in order to determine what made them happy, and he concluded that happy people enjoy a life in general in all of its aspects, while others only enjoy moments of success.

Around the world, the happiest people live in Iceland, Denmark, Sweden, the Netherlands and Australia. Mexico and Puerto Rico are the home to the most satisfied people and Nigeria and Mexico have the most optimistic people. The U.S. ranks number 16 on the list of the happiest countries.

For kids, the most important source of happiness is close friends and family, and happiest kids come from Mexico, Spain, Brazil, Germany and America.

Next, we’ll take a look at some factors that boost happiness. Around the world, two of the biggest factors that contribute to happiness is a sense of community and community celebrations. According to research, we should spend about 2 hours a week or 100 hours a year helping people in the community.

Being a part of a community is also important as 43% of people who attended church weekly say they are very happy.

People who participate in community service also report feeling less worried and stressed. So if you want to increase your own happiness, look for ways to get involved and give back to other people in your community.

Sleep also plays a big role in overall happiness. Studies show that sleep deprived people have a harder time remembering positive ideas and focus more on negative ideas. In one study of sleep deprived college students, researchers found that students remembered 81% of negative words and only 31% of positive words.

Income also impacts overall happiness and people who earn more than $20,000 each year are slightly happier than people who earn less. People in the highest income bracket are also about 3.5% happier than the average person.

Temperature also plays a role in happiness. Happiness is maximized at 57 degrees F, and just 20minutes a day outside in good weather boosts positivity, broadens thinking, and improves working memory. So if the weather is nice, head outside and enjoy the day, it might just make you happier!

Healthy people are 20% more happy than average, and exercise releases endorphins that make your brain feel happier. Runners high is an actual thing since exercise releases feel-good brain chemicals that act as natural opiates. Endorphins also act as pain-killers which can help mask tiredness during exercise. In a study of people with depression, 38% of patients treated with medication experienced a relapse, while only 9% of patients treated with exercise experienced relapse.

Next, we’ll take a look at some of the biggest killers of happiness. Around the world, consumerism is the number one suppressant of happiness and research shows that people who place high value in wealth and status are more depressed and anxious and less sociable. So remember the motto “less is more” and you might just experience greater happiness.

Forgetting to express gratitude and appreciate the things you have can also drain happiness. In a study, participants were divided into groups and asked to keep a journal about 5 things they were grateful for that week or 5 things that annoyed them. The results showed that participants in the gratitude group were 25% happier. Instead of focusing on things you don’t have, appreciate the good things.

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