What Makes a Good Life?

Amyr Rocha Lima

2 min read

Do fame and money make us happy? Many people believe they do but Psychiatrist Robert Waldinger says they are mistaken.

In his TED Talk, he discusses, “What Makes a Good Life?", drawing on lessons from the longest study on happiness.

Waldinger is the director of a 75-year Harvard study on adult development that has included 724 men, half of whom are from Harvard and the other half from low-income Boston neighbourhoods. This phenomenal study has followed these men for the last 34 years, asking about work, home life, health, and happiness, studying their medical records, and interviewing family members.

They discovered that happiness is based on good relationships rather than fame or fortune. People who live in areas where they are more isolated than they would like to be live shorter lives. Loneliness, in other words, is poisonous. So, whether you're 25, 40, or 60, Waldinger has advice for improving your relationships with friends and family.

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