What does it take to be happy? For the majority of people, it seems like all it takes is time.
- Researchers have measured when people are the happiest with their money, their looks, and their lives.
- Most people reported their highest levels of happiness in their late 60s and older.
- People were the least happy in their 50s.
What does it take to be happy?
For the majority of people, it seems like all it takes is time.
Research has shown that people report the highest levels of happiness after the age of 55 in three key areas: their financial situation, their physical appearance, and their overall well-being.
Meanwhile, in all three areas, people reported the lowest levels of happiness between the ages of 45 and 59, according to data from the Centre for Economic Performance, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, and the General Social Survey.
When it comes to their financial situation, people are least happy between 45 and 54, and happiest after the age of 55, the data showed. In terms of their physical appearance, people are least happy from 55 to 59 and reach their happiest after the age of 70.
And overall happiness actually peaks at two different points, according to the data: once at age 23 and again at 69. People reported the lowest levels of happiness in their mid-50s.
Scientists think the correlation between old age in happiness is no coincidence. There is "scientific evidence that people get happier as they get older," according to a Bank of America/Merrill Lynch report that analyzed Nielsen data.
"While there are differing theories as to why this is, most agree that it is an acceptance of aging that promotes contentedness," the report said.
On the other hand, concerns over planning for retirement, paying for children's college, and taking care of aging parents could contribute to the low levels of happiness reported during middle age.