How can you measure happiness, it is so subjective?

How happy were we? Can you quantify feelings? How do we measure happiness, it is so subjective? Ufabet

How do you major happiness?

How do you major happiness?

The way the world has been measuring happiness for decades can be summed up like this: Imagine two friends meeting after a long time. ‘How are you?’ the one friend asks the other. ‘I make 40,800 euros per year,’ she replies. No one talks like this, but this is how we have been measuring well-being traditionally. We have been saying that money equals happiness. And while money may matter – it is not the only thing that contributes to our happiness.

Unfortunately, that is how we have been measuring happiness up until recently. We have been using income as a proxy for happiness, well-being or quality of life and using GDP per capita to measure our progress as nations. One of the reasons for this is that income -national or personal – is objective. However, happiness is not. Happiness is subjective.

This is often the first response we get when people hear that the Happiness Research Institute tries to measure happiness: How do we measure happiness, it is so subjective? 

Yes, of course happiness is subjective, and it should be and that is not an issue. What we care about in our research is how you feel about your life. That is what counts. We believe you are the best judge of whether you are happy or not. How you feel is our new metric and then we try to understand why you feel that way. If you are happier than your neighbour, who has the bigger house, the fancy car and the perfect spouse, by our measures, you are the one that is doing something right.

Working with subjective measures is difficult, but it is not mossible. We do it all the time when it comes to stress, anxiety and depression, which are also subjective phenomena. At the end of the day, it is all about how we as individuals perceive our lives.