The definition of happiness and the good life was much debated among early philosophers. Two schools of thought emerged: Aristippus’ solution was hedonism, or the pursuit of sensual pleasure and avoidance of pain. Aristotle, meanwhile, thought the ultimate aim was eudaimonia, or self-actualization.
Skip forward 2,500 years, and psychologists are applying the scientific method to the problem. Does this help our understanding of what constitutes a life well lived?
A new report has found that being super-thin is bad for models’ health. But what effect do size zeros have on the rest of us?
Governments have tried to increase their citizens’ well-being since time immemorial. But when it comes to assessing how they’re doing, they have generally stuck to objective measures such as GDP, as famously criticized by Lord Layard. This changed earlier this summer, when the British Government became the first in the West to track its citizens’ subjective well-being.
Watching television is probably the most common pastime in the world. On average Americans spend about five hours per day watching TV, while Europeans are glued to the box for over three and a half hours daily.
But not without a little guilt. Most of us realize that the good life doesn’t involve daily doses of Big Brother. Now University of Zurich researcher Bruno Frey has confirmed that sneaking suspicion: watching TV makes us less happy.
Rosie Milner, University of East London MAPP, is also a Cambridge University philosophy graduate. Rosie graduated with the first cohort of Europe’s first Masters course in Applied Positive Psychology.
Rosie has worked …