The Hap­pi­ness Quiz

Men's Health (Australia) - - Contents -

Chances are you only think you know what you want. Switch paths for last­ing con­tent­ment.

With all there is to ne­go­ti­ate right now – pol­i­tics, work, do­mes­tic har­mony, a bet­ter mo­bile-data plan – you’d be for­given for feel­ing a lit­tle low, down, or even down-low. You just have to know how to get back up. Take this quiz to find out what can make you even hap­pier 1 Quick: Which would you say yes to first?

$10,000 Spend­ing time out­doors A full night’s sleep A full night’s sleep on a bed of $10,000 Hap­pi­est an­swer: (Or if that’s your thing. Seems itchy.) Sleep pre­dicts the high­est lev­els of well-be­ing, a re­port by Ox­ford Eco­nom­ics and the Na­tional Cen­tre for So­cial Re­search found. In fact, mov­ing from feel­ing rested “some of the time” to feel­ing rested “all of the time” may boost well-be­ing more than mul­ti­ply­ing your dis­pos­able in­come by five. Spend­ing time out­doors inches up good feel­ings, but not nearly as much as sleep does.

2 On a typ­i­cal day off, you tend to so­cialise for:

Less than four hours Four to six hours Seven hours or more Hap­pi­est an­swer: Get ev­ery­one to­gether: work­ing peo­ple who spent seven or more hours the pre­vi­ous day with friends or fam­ily had the high­est hap­pi­ness-to-stress ra­tios com­pared with those with less so­cial time the day be­fore, a Gallup poll found. Pre­sum­ably these peo­ple didn’t talk pol­i­tics with their fam­ily.

3 A very happy happy hour looks like:

Cheers (ide­ally, the Woody Har­rel­son era) Check­ing out the new vodka bar A bot­tle at my desk

Hap­pi­est an­swer: ( works, too, as long as you re­frain from get­ting a skin­ful.) It’s not about where you go but whom you’re with – strength­en­ing so­cial bonds is es­sen­tial to well-be­ing (which you al­ready knew, but an Ox­ford study of­fers proof). Har­vard kills the buzz a bit: re­searchers found that drink­ing too much is a huge con­trib­u­tor to un­hap­pi­ness, mar­i­tal stress and divorce.

4 That hour seems even hap­pier when you’re drink­ing:

Wine Beer Spir­its (or booze, for peo­ple not in­volved in liquor mar­ket­ing)

Hap­pi­est an­swer: and A BMJ Open study found spir­its elicit more pos­i­tive emo­tions than other types of al­co­hol, but are also linked to neg­a­tive feel­ings. Avoid the ups and downs by hav­ing beer or wine.

5 What’s your pre­ferred sta­tus?

Sin­gle Part­nered up

Hap­pi­est an­swer:

Break­ing free from an ugly re­la­tion­ship feels good, but you might not want to stay part­ner-free. Cou­pled-up types are hap­pier than sin­gles, ac­cord­ing to a re­cent Cana­dian study.

6 How old are you?

Who wants to know? None of your busi­ness But re­ally, who wants to know?

7 Okay, fine. Just give us your range:

16 to 34 35 to 64 65+

Hap­pi­est an­swer:

Not that there’s any­thing you can do about it, but the UK’S Of­fice for Na­tional Sta­tis­tics found that there were more happy peo­ple ages 65 to 84 than in other age groups. So do what you can to be happy now, and know that it only gets bet­ter.

8 How of­ten do you lace up and go for a run?

Am I run­ning from some­thing? Like, an an­i­mal? Or what? Less than once a month Three to five times a week Every day

Hap­pi­est an­swer:

Peo­ple who worked out had 43 per cent fewer poor-men­tal­health days than those who didn’t, the Lancet Psy­chi­a­try sug­gests. Not a run­ner? Do­ing any ex­er­cise three to five times a week (for 45 min­utes) helped.

9 Rock climb­ing, mak­ing sushi, rock climb­ing while mak­ing sushi. What hap­pens when you try a new skill?

If I suck at it, I cut bait I keep try­ing

Hap­pi­est an­swer:

Strug­gle isn’t an im­me­di­ate mood lifter. But re­search sug­gests the short-term frus­tra­tion of wrestling with a new skill is out­weighed by the en­dur­ing men­tal boost you feel when you fi­nally get the hang of what it is that you’re do­ing.

10 Your use of Face­book is:

Like breath­ing – couldn’t live with­out post­ing, lik­ing and click­ing Like pan­cakes for break­fast – cosy and some­how soul-stir­ring, but rare Peo­ple still use Face­book?

Hap­pi­est an­swer:

Time on Face­book can tank sat­is­fac­tion – one study saw that peo­ple who spent 20 min­utes on it had worse moods than those who just clicked around the In­ter­net for that long. If you can’t stay away, at least curb it when it’s stormy out: moods can be con­ta­gious on so­cial me­dia, and bad weather brings on more neg­a­tive posts. See our story, page 84.

TOO MUCH TIME ON SO­CIAL ME­DIA CAN EX­POSE CRACKS IN YOUR WELL-BE­ING.

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