Emotional Health in Childhood ‘Is the Key to Future Happiness’

| November 27, 2014

Emotional health in childhood ‘is the key to future happiness’

LSE study says money, success and good grades are less important

After investigating the factors in a person’s life that can best predict whether they will lead satisfied lives, a team headed by one of the UK’s foremost “happiness” experts, Professor Richard Layard, has come up with an answer that may prove controversial.

Layard and his colleagues at the Wellbeing research programme at the London School of Economics’ Centre for Economic Performance conclude that a child’s emotional health is far more important to their satisfaction levels as an adult than other factors, such as if they achieve academic success when young, or wealth when older. The authors explain that evaluating the quality of a child’s emotional health is based on analysing a range of internal factors in a person’s early life, including whether they endured unhappiness, sleeplessness, eating disorders, bedwetting, fearfulness or tiredness.

The findings raise questions about the extent to which intervening in a child’s life will pay dividends later on.

“Child interventions can produce massive savings to public finances but these are often at a much later date,” the authors note. They conclude: “By far the most important predictor of adult life-satisfaction is emotional health, both in childhood and subsequently. We find that the intellectual performance of a child is the least important childhood predictor of life-satisfaction as an adult.”

For link to entire article from The Guardian, Click here.

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Category: Child Welfare, Education, General, Health, Programs, Resources

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