My 4-year-old daughter, Emilia was listening to music and came to me and asked, “How can laughing be healthy?”. It was the title of the song, and she was curious. I could’ve told her how endorphins act as a neurotransmitter in our brain; however, I don’t think she would get the message. She knows that fruit and vegetables are healthy as they have a lot of vitamins. So, my story to her was that when you laugh, the body produces healthy vitamins, and it increases the feeling of happiness.
Her response to me was: “I want to be happy all the time, daddy”, and she walked away with a smile on her face. It made me think, isn’t it what we all want in life: to be healthy and happy?
Improving happiness means improving people’s lives
It makes sense that happiness is related to a better quality of life, but can people’s lives be improved with the simple means of more happiness? Let’s take a look. First, we have to look at how we spend our lives. About 38% of our life, we are sleeping and about 24% of a typical working period of 50 years, we are working. Down to numbers, it means that the average person will spend 90,000 hours at work over their lifetime. So, if we improve happiness in the workspace then it must have an influence on people’s lives. The connection between happiness at work and overall life satisfaction is close, and with changing how we see the work environment we can make a difference to the world’s 2.1 billion workers.