=== (AGWENDAWATCHDOG) === Lowering your expectations, but not so far it leaves you miserable, is the key to a happy life, according to scientists searching for the ‘equation for happiness’.
Experts from University College London have launched the Happiness Project, a search for a simple equation to explain what makes us happy.
To determine happiness levels they launched a mobile app that encouraged players to make risky decisions and say how they thought they would perform.
More than 18,000 people played the game, giving the researchers an insight into links between performance, expectations and happiness levels in players.
They paired findings with MRI scans to gain a deeper understanding and one day create an equation that can ‘explain the different factors that matter for happiness in each and every one of us.’
The same team published an equation in 2016 that linked happiness the equality, finding greater inequality leads to lower levels of happiness.
For the new work they found happiness is linked to expectations. Finding that lowering expectations increases the likelihood of a positive surprise, but constantly lowering them can leave you unhappy – so it is about finding the right balance.
The authors say we should treat happiness ‘as a tool rather than a goal in its own right,’ to give us insight into any given task and direct our actions based on feeling.