18 March 2019

On the International Day of Happiness UNAI Wants to Know What Happiness Means to You!

Each year the International Day of Happiness is celebrated to recognize the importance of well-being and happiness in the lives of people and to promote the idea that policy objectives should strive for a more inclusive equitable and balanced approach to economic growth that promotes sustainable development, poverty eradication, happiness and the well-being of all people.   

In 2013 the United Nations General Assembly proclaimed 20 March as the International Day of Happiness by adopting a resolution sponsored by Bhutan.  Bhutan has long recognized the value of happiness as the foundation of an inclusive and equitable society, and in 2008 it enshrined Gross National Happiness in the country’s constitution as the primary goal of the government, rather than the pursuit of economic indicators such as Gross National Product. 

Longitudinal studies have shown that happiness can have positive effects on health and life span.  Of course, there are many factors that impact how long we live but having a positive outlook and a general sense of well-being have been linked to longevity. 

So what will make you happy, according to studies?  It’s not money or material things, at least not in the long run.  Studies have shown that the things that bring lasting happiness include strong relationships, helping others, expressing gratitude and meditating. 

To commemorate the International Day of Happiness, UNAI spoke to visitors to UNHQ in New York from all over the world to find out what makes them happy.  Check out this video and let us know what happiness means to you in the comments!

To learn more about the International Day of Happiness, visit the UN website and read the World Happiness Report 2018!

International Day of Happiness

International Day of Happiness 2019