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16 Cards in this Set

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What are the determinants of happiness?

Affective forecasting


Genetic set-point


Circumstances


Construal


Activities/behaviour

Definition of happiness/Subject well-being

The sense that one's life is good, meaningful and worthwhile

Benefits of happiness

More productive at work


More creative


Make more money


Superior jobs


Better leadership


More likely to marry and have a fulfilling marriage


Have more friends and social support


Stronger immune system


More helpful and philanthropic


Cope better with stress and trauma

Affective forecasting

Predictions about what makes us happy




But not necessarily accurate: sources of error: focalism, emotional innumeracy, hedonic adaptation, immune neglect, inaccurate theories about what makes us happy, overestimation

Genetic set-point

22-50%


Happiness as a life long trait


Related to serotonin gene


Born with a genetically-determined set-point for happines

Circumstances

8-15%


eg: income, living conditions, parenthood, autonomy, competence and belonging

Impact of income on happiness

Positive correlation with happiness as it gives: power, high self-esteem, healthcare access, comfort, life satisfaction, time for things




But poor societies are relatively happy


Materialism can be toxic to happiness


Social comparison standards adjust as income adjusts

Impact of neighbourhood change and segregation/integration on happiness

Moving from: Higher to lower poverty: long-term improvement in health and happiness.




Why: less stress, safer, racial segregation does not affect, more short-term thinking: happiness in the moment

Impact of parenthood on happiness

Generally higher subjective well-being, because of caring for children and carrying out related activities

Impact of construal on happiness

Chronically happy people tend to think about life and events in a way that enhances and maintains happiness (vice versa)




eg: remembering and interpreting happy events more

Impact of social comparison processes on happiness

Happy people:


- less sensitive to social comparison info


- view peer's exceptional performance as in an indicative of own future prospects

Impact of self-reflection on happiness

Happy people:


- less inclined to self-reflect




Unhappy people:


- more likely to dwell on ambiguous, uncertain and negative events


- have fewer cognitive resources

Broaden and build theory (Fredrickson 1998)

Positive emotions broaden people's through-action repertoires, encouraging them to discover new/novel patterns of thought and action

Behaviours that increase happiness (positive activity interventions PAIs)

Nurture and enjoy relationships


Expressing gratitude


Helping others


Optimism about future


Savour pleasures in present


Habit of physical activity


Spiritual and religious practices


Commitment to meaningful goals


Behave like a happy person


Random acts of kindness

Moderators of positive activity interventions (PAIs)

- Lack of variety: leads to hedonic adaptation


- Dosage: too much is bad, less is often more


- Motivation: self reflection of PAIs leads to more happiness


- Placebos: belief in PAIs increases well-being


- Effort: more effortful PAIs increases well-being

Hedonic Adaptation (Brickman and Campbell 1972)

The observed tendency of humans to quickly return to a steady level of happiness despite major positive or negative events or life changes.