When Less is More

Are you happy? Well donvDj(tm)t try to be happier; you might become less happy. That is the essence of a multi-cultural study published this month in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology. The study was produced by University of Virginia psychology professor Shigehiro Oishi and his co-authors Ed Diener, University of Illinois at UrbanavDj”Champaign and The Gallup Organization, Dong-Won Choi of California State University, East Bay, Chu Kim-Prieto of the College of New Jersey, and Incheol Choi of Seoul National University. Professor Oishi and his colleagues found that, on average, European-Americans claim to be happy in general, more happy than Asian-Americans or Koreans or Japanese. But it is much easier for them to become less happy by negative events. And they tend to recover at a slower rate from negative events than their counterparts in Asia or with an Asian ancestry. On the other hand, Koreans, Japanese, and to a lesser extent, Asian-Americans, are less happy in general, but recover their emotional equilibrium more readily after a setback than European-Americans.

For more information about the show or to see the full text, visit the Oscar Show’s blog.