In pursuit of happiness Part II: why the older are happier



Why are the frail elderly happier than the dynamic young? In last week’s post, I discussed a bit about the so-called U-Bend of Life as reported in the Dec 16 issue of The Economist.

This week, let us explore further the reasons for the well-being that comes with age. If you take a look at the elderly, we will see all the limitations that aging brings: lack of vitality, mobility problems, failing eyesight, hearing impairment, and cognitive decline. For those who put emphasis on appearances, think about wrinkles and receding hairline.

Why are the old happier than the young? As the report in The Economist had stated:

“Enjoyment and happiness dip in middle age, then pick up; stress rises during the early 20s, then falls sharply; worry peaks in middle age, and falls sharply thereafter; anger declines throughout life; sadness rises slightly in middle age, and falls thereafter.”

The young

  • has lots of expectations to live up to
  • has lots of dreams and ambition to pursue and achievr
  • experiences frustrations and disappointment

At middle age, people might

  • have children reaching puberty, thus adding to stress
  • have financial worries such as mortgage and college money
  • be stuck in a boring job with low pay, little challenge and very little xxx to move up the career ladder.

The elderly

Here are some insights as to why the aged are enjoying life more than I do:

In developed countries, the ageing population is considered a burden to the system. In western medicine, aging is viewed as a disease to be treated. Perhaps it is time to re-examine these concepts.

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NOTE: The contents in this blog are for informational purposes only, and should not be construed as medical advice, diagnosis, treatment or a substitute for professional care. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health professional before making changes to any existing treatment or program. Some of the information presented in this blog may already be out of date.
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