Did you hear about the 75-year long study that researchers at Harvard University conducted to unearth the keys to living a happy and meaningful life?
After following the lives of several hundred people since 1938, here's what they listed as the top 5 secrets that will lead you to greater happiness, joy and fulfillment:
1) Love Is All You Need
One of the most important findings of the study is that relationships are what really matter in life.
You can have all of the money, success and power in the world, but without close, loving relationships, you’ll most likely never experience true happiness.
2) Regardless of How You Begin Life, You Can Become Happier
No matter how bleak your childhood was or how difficult the circumstances you may find yourself in now, it’s never too late to turn things around.
The researchers found that the key is to change what you choose to focus on.
If you focus on what’s not working in your life, you’ll notice more and more of what it is that you don’t want - and life will continue to look dimmer and dimmer.
But, if you switch your focus to love - to where it’s present in your life and to how you can cultivate more of it with others - you can go from being the saddest person you know to being the happiest and most fulfilled very, very quickly.
3) Close Connections = Greater Joy
The study also found that the closer the connections or social ties you have with others, the happier, healthier and less stressed you’ll be.
Take note that this doesn’t mean that you need to have dozens and dozens of close friends…
Most people would find that many connections difficult to manage!
Instead, it has to do with the QUALITY (not the quantity) of the connections you do have.
The more you feel accepted and like you can “just be yourself” with the people around you, the more fulfilled and happy you’ll feel.
4) There’s Zero Correlation Between Money & Happiness
While making a good living can give you the freedom to travel, splurge on luxury items and do more of the things you love…
Getting paid MORE money doesn't mean that you’ll feel MORE happy.
The study found that feeling a sense of contentment in the work you do is the key to living a more meaningful life, rather than how much money you get paid for it.
5) Care Less About What Others Think or Say
The study also found that worrying about other people’s opinions is one of the biggest blocks to our happiness.
While it’s good to be open to criticism in order to learn and grow into a better version of yourself…
Spending too much time and energy on what others think or say is a recipe for unhappiness.
Instead, embrace uncertainty and don’t be afraid to make mistakes.
Life is short, and at the end of the day, if you take a moment to reflect and you know you’ve done your personal best…
You’ll find that you soon begin to feel happier and more fulfilled without even thinking about it :)