Being Kind Makes You Happier Than Chocolate
28 March 2013 at 10:26 am
Being kind to others makes people happier than eating chocolate, according to new Australian research released on the eve of the chocolate-rich Easter weekend.
The research, commissioned by social entrepreneur Hailey Cavill, reveals ‘an act of kindness to benefit another’ makes most Australians happier than eating chocolate.
When asked to rate seven different actions that gave them a sense of fulfillment or happiness, 36% of Australians ranked ‘an act of kindness to benefit another’ as their first choice, while only 4% gave eating chocolate their top vote.
Having a cuddle was second, with 20% of first preferences, while walking in nature came in third with 12%. Completing the list were buying something for someone else and volunteering for a charity or community group, each with 10% of primary votes, and buying something for themselves, with 9%.
Cavill said the research, conducted by Di Marzio Research, was good news for anyone who had ever regretted over-indulging in Easter chocolate.
“Eating chocolate can make us feel good and reduce stress, but you can get a lot more happiness from doing good deeds, without a calorie in sight,” she said.
“I hope this signals a turning of the tide, away from quick fixes for happiness and rampant consumerism, towards a more caring, altruistic and generous society.
“Altruism is part of what makes us human, but we’ve forgotten that it actually makes us feel good too – I call it ‘DoGooding®’ and it’s good for the individual and for society.”
According to Cavill there are surprising similarities between men and women.
“Our previous research has shown women are much more inclined to kind acts such as donating or volunteering for charity, but this research suggests men are tuning into how good it can make them feel to do good for others,” she said.
|Action||% of #1 votes||Ranking|
|An act of kindness to benefit another||36%||1|
|Having a cuddle||20%||2|
|Walking in nature||12%||3|
|Buying something for someone else||10%||4|
|Volunteering for a charity/community group||10%||5|
|Buying something for myself||9%||6|
The ‘How to provoke happiness’ survey was commissioned by Cavill + Co and conducted by Di Marzio Research in the first two weeks of March 2013 and involved 1200 consumers from across Australia to rank up to seven actions that provides them with a sense of fulfillment or happiness.