4.0 out of 5 stars The happiness hypothesis review
Review of Haidt's "The Happiness Hypothesis" - …
Sarracino, F. (2011). Money, sociability and happiness: Are developed countries doomed to social erosion and unhappiness? . doi:10.1007/s11205–011–9898–2 Discovering whether social capital endowments in modern societies have been subjected or not to a process of gradual erosion is one of the most debated topics in recent economic literature. Inaugurated by Putnam's pioneering studies, the debate on social capital trends has been recently revived by Stevenson and Wolfers (2008) contending Easterlin's assessment. Present work is aimed at finding evidence for the relationship between changes in social capital and subjective well–being in western Europe, Australia, Canada and Japan between 1980 and 2005. In particular, I would like to answer questions such as: (1) is social capital in western Europe, Canada, Australia and Japan declining? Is such erosion a general trend of modern and richer societies or is it a characteristic feature of the American one? (2) can social capital trend help explain subjective well–being trend? Therefore, present research considers three different set of proxies of social capital controlling for time and socio–demographic aspects using WVS–EVS data between 1980 and 2005. Present results are encouraging, showing evidence of positive correlation between several proxies of social capital and both happiness and life satisfaction. Furthermore, results show that during last twenty–five years people in some of the most modern and developed countries have persistently lost confidence in the judicial system, religious institutions, parliament and civil service.
Happiness Hypothesis Review • Mentalism Skills
Mongrain, M., & Anselmo-Matthews, T. (2012). Do Positive Psychology Exercises Work? A Replication of Seligman et al.. , (4), 382-389. doi:10.1002/jclp.21839 Objectives: The current work replicated a landmark study conducted by Seligman and colleagues (2005) that demonstrated the long-term benefits of positive psychology exercises (PPEs). In the original study, two exercises administered over 1 week ("Three Good Things" and "Using your Signature Strengths in a New Way") were found to have long-lasting effects on depression and happiness (Seligman, Steen, Park, & Peterson, 2005). Design: These exercises were tested here using the same methodology except for improvements to the control condition, and the addition of a second "positive placebo" to isolate the common factor of accessing positive, self-relevant constructs. This component control design was meant to assess the effect of expectancies for success (expectancy control), as well the cognitive access of positive information about the self (positive placebo). Results: Repeated measures analyses showed that the PPEs led to lasting increases in happiness, as did the positive placebo. The PPEs did not exceed the control condition in producing changes in depression over time. Conclusions: Brief, positive psychology interventions may boost happiness through a common factor involving the activation of positive, self-relevant information rather than through other specific mechanisms. Finally, the effects of PPEs on depression may be more modest than previously assumed.