A team of researchers added a novel twist to something known as a time-use survey. Instead of simply asking people what they had done during the course of their day, as pollsters have been doing since the 1960s, the researchers also asked how people felt during each activity. Were they happy? Interested? Tired? Stressed? Men enjoy being with their parents, while women find time with their mom and dad to be slightly less pleasant than doing laundry.

In the early ’70s, women reported being slightly happier than men. Today, the two have switched places. Since the ’60s, men gradually have cut back on activities they find unpleasant. They now work less and relax more. In the same span, women have replaced housework with paid work and are spending more time doing things they don’t enjoy. Women now have a much longer to-do list than they once did. (New York Times 9/26/07)


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People have their own various interesting takes on happiness. Don Marquis was reported to have said, “Happiness is the interval between periods of unhappiness.” Schweitzer said, “Happiness? That is nothing more than health and a poor memory.”

William Lyon Phelps provided an interesting insight when he said, “If happiness truly consisted of physical ease and freedom from care, then the happiest individual would not be a man or woman; it would be, I think, an American cow.”

Christians know that true happiness and joy will come, not from outward circumstances, but from the One who came to give us abundant life.


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