Think you know what makes you happy?
Well, science might have different ideas…
1. Happiness is contagious
A survey by the British Medical Journal found that you’ll feel 15% happier if you have a close friend who’s happy. Even third-degree friends – people you don’t know very well – can give you a lift of 6%!
2. The Danes are the happiest people on Earth
Denmark has consistently been crowned the world’s happiest country, according to the United Nation’s annual World Happiness Report. The UK only came in at number 23!
3. We can control our happiness
According to researchers, 40% of our happiness levels are within our control and can be improved by making small daily changes to our lifestyles.
4. Married life can make you happier
On average, married people are 10% happier than unmarried people.
5. Happy people are healthy people
People who have positive emotions live longer, live better and are healthier. They’re most resistant to infections, don’t suffer as much from the ailments of old age and have closer social ties.
6. Work can bring you happiness
The world’s happiest professions include the clergy, acting, architecture and firefighting.
7. Getting outside can make you happy
Studies have shown that spending just 20 minutes a day outside boosts your mood, broadens your thinking and improves your memory.
8. You can be born happy
Scientists believe that 33% of your happiness level is determined by your genes, with some even believing that they could be responsible for up to 50%!
9. Money can’t buy you happiness
Although happiness levels do increase with income, they only do so to a point. It’s commonly said that once your earnings surpass £52,000 a year, your happiness levels stagnate.
10. Working out will make you happy
Just seven minutes of exercise can give you a noticeable boost in happiness – even choosing to take the stairs instead of the lift could help lighten your mood.
11. Happiness comes with age
Happiness levels tend to increase with age; a recent survey by the Office for National Statistics showed that 65-79 years is the happiest adult age group.
12. Heat doesn’t equal happiness
You might think that LA sunshine would make you happier than a British spring temperate, but, in fact, a study in 2011 showed that people are happiest at 13.9 degrees Celsius.
13. Happiness can help you lose weight
The perfect excuse to watch another episode of your favourite sitcom; have 100 belly laughs a day and you’ll burn up to 500 calories!
14. You can sleep your way to happiness
Sleep deprived people have been shown to have a harder time remembering positive ideas.