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LeBrok
26-05-14, 02:16
Gallup published a recent poll about people reporting positive emotions worldwide.


Interestingly it turned out that happiest people are not the richest but people who live in Central America. I think these are countries of predominantly Native American origin.

https://joniinbolivia.files.wordpress.com/2012/11/jonis-pics-162.jpg?w=225&h=300



http://content.gallup.com/origin/gallupinc/GallupSpaces/Production/Cms/POLL/dccnqgh5vuqfc28bh4xqbq.png
Gallup measured each of these positive emotions in 138 countries in 2013 by asking people whether they experienced them the previous day. Gallup compiles the "yes" results into a Positive Experience Index score for each country


Money and Happiness
People who make more money tend to report higher positive emotions. Last year, there was a 10-percentage-point gap globally between the highest and lowest income brackets. But not all data suggest money buys happiness. Previous research (http://www.pnas.org/content/107/38/16489) in the United States found that when these same metrics are used, a higher income level makes a significant impact on a person's overall happiness, but only up to $75,000. Above that level, income makes much less of a difference.



Overall the whole world is getting Happier.
And this a happy news (pan intended).
http://content.gallup.com/origin/gallupinc/GallupSpaces/Production/Cms/POLL/jfgeafxycuq59beysnhd6w.png





Here is the full table:

http://content.gallup.com/origin/gallupinc/GallupSpaces/Production/Cms/POLL/mx8z2xhksukuceh7ew4snq.png

What is with people from Balkans and Caucasus, one of least happiest in the world?

Full article:
http://www.gallup.com/poll/169322/people-worldwide-reporting-lot-positive-emotions.aspx#2

Aberdeen
26-05-14, 04:08
Interesting topic, LeBrok. I think it's very difficult to define exactly what "happiness" is, and yet I think most people would tell you they know whether or not they're happy. But what makes happiness? if it's true that people in Afghanistan are happier than people in the Czech republic, happiness can't be about material comfort or personal safety, and yet I would think those two things would be important to most people's happiness. And how does happiness relate to cheerfulness? I know that some folks love to be gloomy and can't stand people who are too cheerful. And different things make different people happy - I've had some people tell me I should do such and such because it would make me happier and I think "no, that would make me miserable". And do some people value happiness more than others? I think it's a difficult question. I've always been more concerned about meaning than happiness, but I suppose that one could say that living a meaningful life is what makes some of us happy, while other folks don't seem to see it as important.

Do you have a definition of happiness?

And yes, one must wonder what's going on in the Balkans? Are they really that miserable, and if so, why?

LeBrok
26-05-14, 05:07
Do you have a definition of happiness?
I would say anything that makes you feel good, and how often one is able to do such things. That would be the environmental cues though.
There is the genetic factor too, the ability to experience happiness. However, there is more to it. Some people are born happy easy going and almost everything makes them happy. Heck, they can sit still being happy doing nothing at all. It is like the default state of their sole is to be happy. These people could easily be happy even in miserable and poor life.
On other hand people born in pessimistic state default are almost never happy and complain about everything.


And yes, one must wonder what's going on in the Balkans? Are they really that miserable, and if so, why? Good question. Perhaps it is an inheritance of J2 people? lol

Echetlaeus
26-05-14, 05:14
No way ! Genes have nothing to do with that, or if they have is of minor climax.

It is mostly a result socioeconomic and geographic attributes of a society in combination with personal characteristics (for example I got divorced, death in family, I like the job I do etc.).

I find research on happiness not robust, due to the lack of a universal definition of the term. Like a pseudo science which tries to measure the unmeasurable.

As I said before, socioeconomic reasons are the most important, but as a project per se, must not be taken seriously.

With respect,
- Εχετλαίος, a dismal scientist -

LeBrok
26-05-14, 08:30
As I said before, socioeconomic reasons are the most important, but as a project per se, must not be taken seriously.

With respect,
- Εχετλαίος, a dismal scientist -
So by mostly socioeconomic try to explain why poor Central America is happier than North America and Europe.

There are two sides to it, one is environment the other genetics, other wards nurture and nature. If you can't explain happiness or human nature in general fully by environmental factors, wouldn't you agree that there has to be a genetic part to happiness? In very simple therms, no genes, no human, no happiness.

Echetlaeus
26-05-14, 14:25
So by mostly socioeconomic try to explain why poor Central America is happier than North America and Europe.

There are two sides to it, one is environment the other genetics, other wards nurture and nature. If you can't explain happiness or human nature in general fully by environmental factors, wouldn't you agree that there has to be a genetic part to happiness? In very simple therms, no genes, no human, no happiness.

Correlation does not tell me anything, causation is what I seek for.
If an IV estimation can prove that, then I am OK.

People in Africa seem to be happy, maybe they are happier compared to the past. Balkans are not good these days, for Economy is down and creates a plethora of problems.

Aberdeen
26-05-14, 14:44
Correlation does not tell me anything, causation is what I seek for.
If an IV estimation can prove that, then I am OK.

People in Africa seem to be happy, maybe they are happier compared to the past. Balkans are not good these days, for Economy is down and creates a plethora of problems.

Where there's correlation, if you want to say it has nothing to do with causation, you have to provide an alternative explanation. Since I can't see an alternative explanation, I'm willing to consider the possibility that happiness and unhappiness may be caused in part, perhaps even in large part, by genetics, since there definitely seems to be a genetic factor in clinical depression. It's all about body chemistry, and perhaps it can vary in different populations. Perhaps some groups are just better than others at absorbing the chemicals that produce a sense of well-being. Knowing how strongly genetics relates to depression, I'm willing to accept that explanation unless you can provide a good rationale for some other explanation.

Echetlaeus
26-05-14, 15:26
Where there's correlation, if you want to say it has nothing to do with causation, you have to provide an alternative explanation. Since I can't see an alternative explanation, I'm willing to consider the possibility that happiness and unhappiness may be caused in part, perhaps even in large part, by genetics, since there definitely seems to be a genetic factor in clinical depression. It's all about body chemistry, and perhaps it can vary in different populations. Perhaps some groups are just better than others at absorbing the chemicals that produce a sense of well-being. Knowing how strongly genetics relates to depression, I'm willing to accept that explanation unless you can provide a good rationale for some other explanation.

Correlation is a necessary, not a sufficient condition. This is what I am saying.

Angela
27-05-14, 04:54
I don't think it's an either/or proposition, either genetics or life circumstances, but rather a combination of both things, as other posters have said. Some people, no matter what befalls them, are able to "roll with the punches" and maintain their equilibrium and sense of enjoyment of life. Others in the same circumstances are thrown into depressions which can become clinical and life threatening. Differences in brain chemistry must account for it.

I also think there's probably population differences.(there are, of course, also differences within populations). You just need to compare the literature and film of different countries. You can see the operation of very different temperaments and attitudes toward life.

Of course, there's a limit to how much your brain chemistry can protect you. How happy can people be if they're in the middle of a war zone for years on end, or if hunger is always at the door?

On the other hand, I think expectations play a role in all of this. The more sophisticated and modern the society, the more that people expect from life, and the more likely they are to be dissatisfied. My parents often said that despite the fact that people had very little in terms of material possessions when they were growing up, they were more content with life, happier if you will. I think that's probably true.

Of course, this is all assuming we even know what happiness is...is it Cicero's "tranquility of mind"? One thing I'm pretty sure of...money, beyond the amount for the necessities of life, doesn't insure it. Rather, I think it involves feeling connected with one's world and specifically with other people. As Lord Byron put it, " all who joy would win
Must share it,—Happiness was born a twin."

Ike
28-05-14, 04:39
What is with people from Balkans and Caucasus, one of least happiest in the world?

Don't know for about the rest, but since the induced civil war, occupation and introduction of democracy the quality of life and living conditions in Yugoslavia went below zero.

LeBrok
28-05-14, 04:50
I don't think it's an either/or proposition, either genetics or life circumstances, but rather a combination of both things, as other posters have said. Some people, no matter what befalls them, are able to "roll with the punches" and maintain their equilibrium and sense of enjoyment of life. Others in the same circumstances are thrown into depressions which can become clinical and life threatening. Differences in brain chemistry must account for it.

Surely nature and nurture have huge effect on happiness. For a lack of better measurements and any consensus, lets say in 50/50 ratio.
I love to point out importance of genetics in every human behavior, with every occasion I have. There are still too many people ignoring genetic factors and believing that people are born in "clean slate" state and they can be molded to anything with proper environment.

kamani
28-05-14, 06:32
And yes, one must wonder what's going on in the Balkans? Are they really that miserable, and if so, why?
they're not more miserable. I've been there. This is a typical fake study to grab attention and viewers.

AgnusDei
04-07-14, 23:31
Happiness is genetic is the sense that you're more likely to end up unhappy/depressed if you always have low levels of Serotonin .

LeBrok
05-07-14, 18:13
Happiness is genetic is the sense that you're more likely to end up unhappy/depressed if you always have low levels of Serotonin . Number of receptors for Serotonin in brain cells are important too, and are genetic. Too few receptors, or broken receptors, and even high level of serotonin won't help.
Also Neuronal Network Architecture is genetic, the main part. Even the new born kids love to be touched and interacted with, too young to be taught this.

AgnusDei
05-07-14, 19:34
Number of receptors for Serotonin in brain cells are important too, and are genetic. Too few receptors, or broken receptors, and even high level of serotonin won't help.
Also Neuronal Network Architecture is genetic, the main part. Even the new born kids love to be touched and interacted with, too young to be taught this.

I know that depression can be genetic since it runs in the family ! :sad-2: