The Happiness-Success Circle

Happy people have it good. Not only are their daily lives filled with general cheer and optimism, but they also experience greater success in all of their pursuits. This theory is fairly new as the opposite was originally thought to be true — that it was success that brought about happiness.

It now works both ways. A recent study published in Psychological Bulletin has found that happiness brings about greater success. “Perhaps happy people also have a lot of good things come to them because of their happiness, their sociability, their energy,” said the lead author of the study, Sonja Lyubomirsky, professor of psychology at the University of California, Riverside. “It’s clear that the relationship is bi-directional. It’s an upward spiral.”

This happiness research is part of a growing trend toward positive psychology. In a country where depression is rampant and psychotropic drugs are the norm, I welcome the effort put into understanding emotions that make life a pleasure to live, like happiness, contentment and joy.

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