Two recent studies show that acts of kindness such as doing a good deed or buying a gift as long as it’s for someone else will make you happier. Perhaps, that ‘s why Saint Nicholas AKA Santa Claus is so jolly.
The first study, which was published in the Journal of Social Psychology had participants perform acts of kindness for a mere ten days. The Great Britain researchers formed three groups out of the 86 participants in the study. The control group was given no instructions and at the conclusion of the ten days were not happier than before the study began. However, the group that was instructed to perform an act of kindness each day reported a significant elevation in their happiness.
The second study, conducted by researchers at Harvard Business School and the Univeristy of British Columbia suggests that kindness has a long lasting effect on our happiness. This study’s findings reflected that people felt happier simply by recalling a time they bought something for someone else rather than when recalling a time when they purchased something for themselves.
Another intersting fact about the second study, which was published online in the Journal of Happiness Studies, was that the price of the gift didn’t seem to have an effect on the level of happiness the person experienced. It didn’t matter if the gift had cost $20 dollars or $100 dollars. Also, the happier the participant felt about past acts of kindness, the more likely they were to choose to continue doing for others in lieu of themselves.
This is all according to the Greater Good website from the University of California, Berkeley.
With the holidays just around the corner, we all have the opportunity to test these findings. The new mantra Give and Be Happy.
Below is a video about enjoying life
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