The height of misfortune: this is the age at which people are most dissatisfied

This is the age at which people are the most unhappy

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Life is made up of ups and downs. According to a study, people are said to be the most unhappy at an age – how come?

People strive to be happy and content. But if we were always happy, at some point we would probably no longer appreciate happiness. As with so many things, it all comes down to balance – and life is not just about highs, but also lows.

Unfortunately, it is the latter that usually occupy us for longer and in which people can happily lose themselves. Because the moment we are unhappy, we feel further removed from our goals than ever before. There are two things that can help us with this. On the one hand, the platitude is true that it goes up again after each valley – that’s how things go. On the other hand, we are not alone with our emotions.

Especially when we wallow in our misery completely alone, it is very helpful to know that we are absolutely not out of line with this – even if it may feel the same at the moment. In fact, people are very similar and wander through the same valleys in the course of their lives.

Researchers have now taken a closer look at the up and down phenomenon and examined when people are actually most unhappy.

The midlife crisis and the height of misfortune

For the study, which was published in the Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, researchers checked the data from a total of 14 million people from 40 European countries, the USA and 168 countries in the Gallup World Pool. Tada: Regardless of external influences, a specific age emerged in which the happiness of many (at least felt) starts to falter. The peek of unhappiness was 49 years.

As people got older, they said they were less happy. The result supports the common thesis of the midlife crisis, through which we all have to penetrate to a greater or lesser extent.

We have our (un) luck in our own hands

But before you bury your head in the sand in view of the impending misfortune – if you are not yet 49 – we also have good news for you. It gets better. Yes, really. Once people have left the magic 49 behind, they become happier and happier, according to the study.

In the study, the researchers also name possible causes of why things are going uphill again. Accordingly, people should then recognize that they are chasing unrealistic goals and are concentrating again on the here and now. At the same time, in old age you would appreciate many things that had long been taken for granted – such as health.

Sounds sensible. And most of all, helpful. Because if we already know the countermeasures, we can take countermeasures – and take our luck into our own hands.

Sources used: Psychology Today, Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization