Thursday, 22 December 2011

Christmas, Family and Happiness

It is time to wish all my readers a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

If you are hurrying to buy the last present do not worry, the family reunion is more important than the presents. So, spare a moment to think about those who are alone or have no family or friends to visit over Christmas.

You may have heard this cliché many times. However, we must wonder why Christmas is so significant in bringing families together and why families are so important for human happiness. Here are some facts: A recent study on doing things together found evidence that: “The youngsters with mental health complaints ate less frequently with both parents than the youngsters in the comparison group. They also shared less activities and practiced less family rituals—union and life cycle—than the families of the youngsters in the comparison group, and showed a lower level of satisfaction in perceived family function.”

If you like lots of statistical analysis you can find here plenty o statistics related to life satisfaction and happiness. Community celebrations and extended families often correlate with happiness, but the facts are usually difficult to interpret. Therefore, if you are curious about happiness economics Wikipedia provides a simple introduction here.

Anyway, even if you think that ritual celebrations create a travel nightmare, limit your personal freedom and you cannot stand some boring relatives, try to be tolerant. You will find that tolerance is an important virtue to achieve happiness.

So, enjoy your holiday season!

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