The Psychology of Everyday Life: Motivation and the Search For Happiness

The Psychology of Happiness

What is the happiness set point?

In the early 1970s Phillip Brickman and Donald Campbell introduced the notion of the happiness set point. In this view, our general level of happiness is genetically determined and largely untouched by life events. While significant life events may knock us above or below our set point, the effect is only temporary and we return to our baseline in relatively short order. Although most happiness researchers have since tempered this extreme stance, a fair amount of evidence suggests there is some merit to this idea.


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