If you have been worrying about mid-life crisis or are even suffering from it, it's time to rethink. A 25-year-old study says it's just an illusion, a myth and, in fact, happiness only grows in this age.
The study is carried out by researchers Nancy Galambos (Psychology), Harvey Krahn (Sociology), Matt Johnson (Human Ecology) and their team from Canada's University of Alberta.
Conventionally, it has been believed that the happiness graph of the adult life is a U-shaped regression that goes downwards when people leave their teenage-hood and enter the twenties and eventually the middle age. Scientists say the concept was established through cross-sectional studies (comparing different age groups at a set point in time). The new study, which has been published in the journal Developmental Psychology, is however based on data from two longitudinal studies (an observational research method in which data is gathered for the same subjects repeatedly over a period of time).
The team tracked high school students for 25 years and graduating college students for more than 14 years. Each time, they were asked, "How happy are you with your life?" The team found that the level of happiness dropped slightly between ages 32 and 43, but was still higher than when they were in their teens and early 20s.
“I think it’s important to question conclusions that have already been drawn about mid-life happiness,” said Galambos, noting they incorrectly informed so much of the academic and popular opinion about happiness.
The research workers noted that they did not define happiness for the participants neither did they ask or any examples.