As a scientist by day, I can’t resist deconstructing a new Harvard study that looked at what truly makes people happy. This Harvard study began 80 years ago and has expanded to the offspring off the initial cohort to now include data on thousands of participants.
The bottom line? Social relationships. We already know from studies done on cancer patients and those with heart disease that a patient’s recovery is bettered by the social networks they have; friends and family who support them.
Being lonely is as risky to you as smoking, drinking and having high blood pressure.
But it’s more than just having a good group of friends and family to get you through the tough times. Here are the takeaways from the Harvard study.
1) Don’t sweat the small stuff. The study found that as people got older, they focused on more important things and that’s what made them happy. So that closet that stresses you out because it’s not organized? Let it be.
2) Focus on the personal connections. Let the dirty dishes keep until the morning and spend the time pillow talking with your better half or calling up a friend and catching up with her. Connecting with people helps solidify those social networks.
3) Be grateful. Take a moment to be thankful for the things you have. The little things that bring joy to your life; whether it’s the smile of your child/grandchild or a good book.
Speaking of good books, don’t forget to check out the May line of fabulous Harlequin Heartwarmings! While you work on the three things above, take a moment to fill your heart with some love.
Thanks for reading the post. I always love hearing from readers. You can find me on twitter/facebook or my website.
Tell me, what are some things that make you smile or make you happy?