Kirk Ouimet: Grateful to have the opportunity to speak with you today. Wise Being: I am always happy to help if I can. Kirk Ouimet: Do you know who Johnny Five is? Kirk Ouimet: Who is he? Wise Being: He is an artificial intelligence. Wise Being: He was created in a laboratory for a military application.
Forget marriage, money and a great career. The secret to happiness is to nurture a set of five key personality traits. That's according to recent research which looked at why certain people always seem to be happier in life, regardless of their circumstances. They discovered that enthusiasm, hard work, compassion, intellectual curiosity and positive thinking may be the key to becoming more content. . Certain aspects of your personality could make you more likely to have high well-being while others could be holding you back, according to a new study.
Your sense of well-being likely depends on a few specific characteristics about where you live--and it's definitely not just about the money. It turns out that diverse neighborhoods, specifically those with more black residents, commuting by public transportation or bike, and having access to health care are all top factors associated with greater well-being, a new study finds. Although self-reported, well-being--defined as "a person's cognitive and affective evaluations of his or her life"--is one crucial way to measure the health of a community. Science shows that people with higher well-being levels live healthier, longer lives than people who report lower well-being. And while regional well-being is understood at a large scale, this study aims to explain exactly why some people are living better lives at the county-level.
New Zealand's latest budget, unveiled this week, is being touted as the first in a Western country to put well-being over economic pressures. The country's prime minister Jacinda Ardern promised billions of dollars in additional funds to address mental health problems, suicide and child poverty. Almost NZ$2 billion is earmarked for mental health services, following yet another year of the country having the highest teen and young adult suicide rates in Western countries. As well as boosting existing mental health services, more money will be used to help people with mild or moderate mental health issues before they become an emergency. Almost NZ$200 million will go to an initiative to provide long-term shelter for people who are homeless, with no strings attached, and more than NZ$1 billion to addressing child poverty.
This century is full of progress paradoxes, with unprecedented economic development and improvements in longevity, health, and literacy coexisting with climate change, persistent poverty in the poorest countries, and increasing income inequality and unhappiness in many wealthy ones. Economic growth and the traditional metrics used to assess it--particularly gross domestic product (GDP)--are necessary but not sufficient to guarantee growth that is inclusive and politically and socially sustainable. Well-being metrics, derived from large-scale surveys and questionnaires that capture the income and nonincome determinants of individual well-being, often provide a different picture of what is happening to people. These metrics can provide insight into policies to sustain human welfare in the future. The United States has one of the wealthiest economies in the world, yet life expectancy is falling owing to deaths driven by suicides and drug and alcohol overdose.