As a society, we’re achieving more yet feeling worse. Even when well paid, we’re dissatisfied. Most of us accomplish plenty but lack feelings of well-being.
While every metric of society is improving worldwide, our happiness levels are declining — and the more we have and achieve, the less successful we feel. This phenomenon is known as the “progress paradox.”
- In a worldwide survey of happiness, the United States ranked a dismal 23rd.
- Between 1972 and 2004, Americans’ real buying power doubled, yet our feelings of financial security dropped by 34%.
- The number of people who felt very happy with their lives dropped by 31% during that time. (Shawn Achor, One Day University Presents: Positive Psychology: The Science of Happiness)
What does make us feel good about ourselves?
- The ability to manage energy and stress in positive ways
- A strong social support network
- Most importantly, believing that what we do matters
This article reveals the latest psychological research that challenges some of our most commonly held beliefs about satisfaction and well-being and suggests action steps you can take right now to increase your feelings of happiness.
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