Practicing positive character traits like optimism, curiosity and humor could boost your well-being, a new study suggests.
A study published in the Journal of Happiness Studies shows that when you purposely train a positive character trait, it is linked with a higher reportage of well-being, evidenced by being in a good mood or being cheerful more often.
The study included 178 adults, who were split up into three groups. The first group was told to practice character traits of curiosity, optimism, gratitude, humor and enthusiasm, while the second group was told to practice creativity, kindness, foresight, appreciating beauty and love of learning. The third group wasn’t told to practice any character traits.
The study participants practiced their assigned traits by doing things like writing thank-you cards to people to practice gratitude, or by recognizing a beautiful object or situation in order to train appreciation for beauty.
Life satisfaction was highest among the first group, though both the first and second groups did experience an increase in well-being, researchers found.
Recently, an AARP study of more than 4,000 adults showed that health, relationships, pleasures and accomplishment are some of the biggest factors in happiness.