Happiness flows through social networks

Happiness flows through social networks

What makes you happy? Your favorite movie? An ice cream cone on a hot day? Cuddling with your spouse?

Research published in the British Medical Journal (BMJ) followed over 4,000 people for 20 years and determined that happiness spreads through social networks – when your family, friends and neighbors are happy, so are you.

The same holds true for misery.

Judith Graham of The Chicago Tribune spoke with James Fowler, one of the study’s authors.

A separate study, released in June, 2008, by the University of Michigan, shows that happiness is rising around the world. It also ranks countries from most to least happy (PDF), though that list varies somewhat, depending on the survey.

To read more about this positive psychology and happiness research – click here