It’s not good for man, or woman, to be alone. And a new Canadian study confirms it.
What makes people happy—I mean, really happy?
Many of us believe we’ll be over the moon if we get a good education, find a great job, and make lots of money. But a recent study found that what really makes us happy is membership within a tight-knit community—one that includes regular church attendance.
Which is exactly how Scripture tells us we ought to live.
Happiness researchers at Canada’s McGill University and the Vancouver School of Economics recently interviewed 400,000 Canadians. They found that people who are members of strong communities—typically in rural areas—are EIGHT TIMES happier than people who live in cities.
Factors in greater happiness include shorter commutes—which means more time with family. Residents pay much less for housing than city dwellers, who pay 30 percent or more of their income on a place to live—something that can cause real stress.
While people who live in densely-populated areas may interact with more people, those interactions tend to be shallower. City dwellers also tend to have less contact with friends and family and feel less safe—which probably makes it harder to reach out to neighbors.
And that can be dangerous. Social isolation can “literally change the brain, flooding [it] with a chemical that fuels fear and aggression,” notes the Daily Mail.
By contrast, people in rural areas say they feel a stronger sense of connection with their neighbors. They tend to be less transient, and more likely to attend church. Clearly, small towns and rural areas “are more conducive than cities to forming strong social bonds,” writes Christopher Ingraham of the Washington Post.
This isn’t the only study that found that a strong sense of community makes for greater happiness. For instance, the Danish people spend a great deal of time with family and friends—which is likely why they are among the happiest people on earth, despite awful weather and super-high taxes.
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SOURCE: Christian Post, Eric Metaxas And Anne Morse