New Study of 1 Million People: Happiness Makes You Dramatically More Successful

New Study of 1 Million People: Happiness Makes You Dramatically More Successful

So many people live their lives thinking that they’ll be happy WHEN they achieve some success.

This isn’t entirely inappropriate, because achievement and accomplishment DO provide some level of happiness.

But it can also lead to what I call “the tyranny of when”, constantly postponing happiness, waiting until you get somewhere, but never really arriving.

Instead, many years ago now, I propose and antidote that I called “the primacy of positivity”, which put happiness first and foremost and then assumed that success will come as a result of the inspiration and motivation positive emotions bring.

And the good news is, this is supported by the research once again …

If you’re a busy entrepreneur laser focused on the success of your business, happiness might seem like, if not an afterthought, then at least a secondary concern. It’s tempting to think that once you’ve got your business humming along, then you can turn to emotional well-being. 

But if that’s how you think, boy do I have a study to show you.

It’s massive (looking at nearly one million people), conducted by some of the biggest names in positive psychology, and crystal clear in its conclusions: Being happier dramatically increases your chances of success at work. So next time you’re tempted to push pursuing happiness into the future, remind yourself the latest science says happiness brings success and not the other way around. 

Case closed: Happier workers are more successful workers. 

The research, which recently appeared in the Journal of Happiness Studies (yes, this really exists) and was summed up by its authors in an MIT Sloan Management Review article, starts from a simple question. What comes first, success or happiness? Does being successful make you happy or does being happy make you successful? 

To find out, the team–Paul Lester, Ed Diener, and Martin Seligman (who is often dubbed “the father of positive psychology“)–set out to collect a huge amount of data. To do so they looked to the world’s largest employer: the military. The researchers worked with the U.S. Army to follow nearly one million soldiers over five years, measuring both their well-being upon entering the army and their performance over time.

The results surprised even a team who has devoted much of their careers to the proposition that happiness is worth studying and promoting…

… keep reading the full & original article HERE