Happify: the science of happiness

Happify: the science of happiness

aNewDomain.net – Created by a team of scientists and game designers, Happify encourages regular participation in specially crafted activities that boost your happiness. Think of it as a workout for your happiness muscles – flexing them on a regular basis is scientifically proven to make you happier.

Researchers investigating the role genetics plays in a person’s well-being say that genetics only determines about 50 percent of our happiness levels. The rest is influenced primarily by our behaviors, actions, and thoughts. Recent research into activities that promote positive emotions suggests that qualities like kindness and mindfulness may be the product of skills we can learn through training. It’s similar to how practice improves our musical or athletic abilities. Game developers at Happify are translating this research into simple and fun science-informed games and activities to boost your happiness levels.

Like most workouts, if you aren’t enjoying the activity, it’s difficult to convince yourself to participate on a regular basis. Happify has this covered with a variety of activities at varying levels, presented in an upbeat and user-friendly platform. Users complete different activities related to one of the five essential happiness skills, measure their happiness, track their progress and earn rewards.

Happify Main Image

Image credits: Becket Moorby

Happify’s proprietary S.T.A.G.E. framework helps users master the five essential happiness skills: Savoring, thanking, aspiring, giving, and empathizing. Savoring is the practice of taking time to prolong your enjoyment of good things in your everyday life. Thanking and appreciating others fills us with optimism and self confidence and deepens our relationships. Optimism attracts others and enables us to feel and be more successful. Giving helps us feel more connected to the world and open to new experiences. Empathy, the ability to imagine and understand the emotions or ideas of people that are different from you, allows us to become less judgmental, less angry and more patient.

Happify users sign up for tracks, including “cope better with stress,” “build self confidence” and “be more socially connected.” New activities in each track are unlocked daily, or you can choose to click on the Skills tab and tackle some of the essential happiness skills separate from the organized track.

I was asked to participate in the beta version of Happify as a Happify Pioneer. After completing a few tracks and logging in a few times per week to complete several activities, I think the platform is pretty clever. The key to success is the social element, allowing users to respond to each others’ posts and provide encouragement. Happify is gradually adding access to more users and has recently launched an iPhone app with an app for Android on the way. Though not open to the public at this time, you can request an invite and participate in the beta version.

Becket Morgan
Becket Morgan is a writer and non-profit professional based in central Vermont. Follow her on Twitter @becketmorgan or add her to your circles on Google+.
Becket Morgan
Tags: Cloud Computing,Technology
  • https://twitter.com/intent/follow?screen_name=OscarBAtDell&tw_p=followbutton Oscar Buijten

    Hi Becket!
    Very inspiring indeed. Thanks for that.
    Along the same lines you might be interested in what Google does.
    Google’s “Jolly good fellow (that no one can denie)” aka Meng, has developed a great (now open sourced) personal development program (and book) called ‘Search Inside Yourself’.

    You can find the details here: http://www.siyli.org (pronounce: silly).
    If you go to Resources > Videos (top right), you will find some pretty amazing stuff.

    Be happy!
    Oscar