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Laughter Lecture Notes

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Health Sciences
Health Sciences 1001A/B
Bert Carron

Chapter 17: Laughter o Examples winning lottery; becoming The Benefits of Happiness disabled  Suggested that increased happiness could lead What Makes Us Happy? to : o Longer Life RESEARCH SHOWS... o Health o Resilience 1) Age o Increased performance  Positively associated with happiness  Standard of living increased dramatically yet  Most happy= 65+ and older happiness in industrialized countries has shown  Least happy= 18-29 years little increase over time. 2) Marital Status  Married people happier than singles The Pursuit of Happiness 3) Education  Many are rooted in the desire to become happy  College/university grads happier than those  Often, the decisions we make fall at increased without degree 4) Religion happiness  Americans will spend $750million on self- help  Religious individuals happier 5) Health books and > 1 billion on motivational speakers  Positive psychology (“science of happiness”)  Healthier people happier offered in many colleges and universities Happiness: Nature vs. Nurture Where Are We Going Wrong?  Studies of twins suggest that we all have an Dr. Daniel Gilbert blames: innate level of happiness  Possible to lift our biological set range of 1) Culture buy bigger, newer, better things happiness, at least to some extent, if we  HOWEVER.... work at it o “Stuff” does not buy happiness  “You can’t take a grouch and make him o $ buys happiness for those who lack giggle all the time” basic needs o > $50,000 income: increased money Happiness Around the World does not equal increased happiness  People express fundamental emotions in a 2) Genes hardwire us to reproduce  HOWEVER.... similar way all over the world  Happiness depends on close family and other o Children have small negative effect human relationships when parents asked about happiness  Recent study by social psychologist Adrian “in the moment” White “World Map of Happiness” o Does not mean that moments of joy and happiness do not exist  Used statistical data (2002-2005) and subjective responses of 80, 000 people to map well-being 3) Imagination when we envision future we see perpetual gloom or happily-ever after in 178 countries  Developed in part due to increase “political  HOWEVER.... interest in using measures of happiness as a o Unhappiness and joy do not last as long as we expect national indicator along with measures of wealth” Results:  Expression of courtesy and politeness rather than inner joy  Strongest determinants of national happiness:  Putting more joy in our smiles might o Health levels o Prosperity positively influence health & happiness o Access to basic education Recent Study:  Population Size  smaller countries scored  Psychologists looked through 141 yearbook better while largest populations fared worse photos (from 1960) separated Duchenne Happiness Rankings: from Pan American Smilers  All smilers contacted at age 27, 43, 52 1) Denmark  Results: 2) Switzerland o Those with Duchenne smile: 3) Austria  More likely to be married and 10) Canada stay married 23) United States  More likely to experience increased sense of personal 41) United Kingdom well-being o Results consistent 30 years later 82) China Sense of Humour 90) Japan Associated with: 125) India 178) Burundi  Self-reported physical health  Increased self-esteem Advice from the Experts  Decreased psychological symptoms related to  Find small things we can do every day that bring negative life events us joy  Increased ability to relax  Nurture relationships: family
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