Man proves mother wrong after lifetime of advice
Professor Gilbert is a brave soul. After years of listening to his mother’s advice about how to be happy, he conducted an experiment that proved her “partially” wrong.
Apparently Mrs Gilbert was always banging on about how money, marriage and kids were the secret to a happy life.
But Professor Gilbert, now a father and grandfather, had quite enough of that kind of talk.
According to his “research”, marriage is good when done right, but not for too long. Most marriages go downhill after about 15 years and the happiest people then are those who get divorced, he said.
Money was unsurprisingly a pretty necessary part of a happy life, so long as you earn a reasonably modest amount and share it with others.
But kids – well they are anathema of modern happiness.
“Once people have kids, there’s a downturn in happiness. The only symptom of empty nest syndrome is nonstop smiling,” he told a Harvard lecture theatre. Allegedly while smiling. Ouch.
Say what you will about these theories, but they are nothing if not refreshingly honest.
What a nice change to be reminded that greed and working ourselves to the bone really isn’t that good for anyone’s well being.
And that thinking of others and extending ourselves beyond the limits of “normal life” by being creative and asking questions about the world around us can actually make us feel happier.
The only real question is whether Professor Gilbert was tough enough to tell his mum.
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