By Happiness Correspondent, Jill Dando News
The longest study on happiness has been completed by Harvard University.
The incredible study was carried out by researchers over 80 years.
Dr Robert Waldinger is the head of the 80-year Harvard Study of Adult Development.
As psychiatry professor at Harvard Medical School and author of the new book The Good Life, his research is one to be taken very seriously.
The experiment tracked individuals from adolescence until old age, gathering information on their physical and mental health, jobs, relationships, and other factors.
Here’s what Dr Robert concluded.
1. Relationships are most important
Having supportive and nurturing connections promotes one’s general health by acting as a buffer against life’s pressures.
2. Pro-actively make friendships
Don’t sit back but make friendships. More than 40% of adults report feeling lonely at least some of the time. The happiest people established plans with friends, reached out to others, and became members of community and social groups.
3. Marriage has ups and downs, but it provides long-term support
Marriage is vital for happiness but evolves over time. People are happiest when they initially get together, then satisfaction reduces when children arrive, rises when children leave home and falls again when adult children return to live at home.
4. Take Good Care of Your Body in the Long Run
People who exercised regularly and maintained their physical fitness throughout their lifetimes were more likely to thrive well into old age.
One of the centenarians interviewed for the study said, “Take care of your body like you’re going to need it for 100 years.”
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