Greater Good Science Center Membership. Register Today
   
 

Trust for Happiness

By Jeremy Adam Smith | September 1, 2008 | 0 comments

When Paul Zak, founding director of the Center for Neuroeconomics Studies at Claremont Graduate University, compared levels of trust and self-reported happiness in 25 countries (see graph below), he discovered that the two were closely related: The more trusting people are, the happier they are, and vice versa. Noting the relationship between the hormone oxytocin, trust, and warm, happy feelings, Zak writes in a 2007 paper, “Nature has designed us to be conditional cooperators because it literally feels good.”

Tracker Pixel for Entry
 
 
 
About The Author

Jeremy Adam Smith is producer and editor of the Greater Good Science Center’s website. He is also the author or coeditor of four books, including The Daddy Shift, Rad Dad, and The Compassionate Instinct. Before joining the GGSC, Jeremy was a 2010-11 John S. Knight Journalism Fellow at Stanford University. You can follow him on Twitter!

  

Like this article?

Here's what you can do:

Donate
 
  
 
blog comments powered by Disqus
 

Most...

  
  • The Science of Happiness

    March 28, 2015

  • Why Evolution Made Forgiveness Difficult

    March 24, 2015

    Nature endowed humanity with both revenge and forgiveness as tools of conflict resolution. But why does one seem so much harder than the other?

  • Happiness Greatest Hits

    March 20, 2015

    Today is the UN's International Day of Happiness! To celebrate, here's a list of some of our most illuminating and helpful happiness research, tools, and tips.

  

Greater Good Events

How Compassion Creates Resilience, with Kelly McGonigal
International House, UC Berkeley campus
May 20, 2015


How Compassion Creates Resilience, with Kelly McGonigal

A book event for The Upside of Stress


» ALL EVENTS
 
 

Take a Greater Good Quiz!

How compassionate are you? How generous, grateful, or forgiving? Find out!

» TAKE A QUIZ
 

Watch Greater Good Videos

Jon Kabat-Zinn

Talks by inspiring speakers like Jon Kabat-Zinn, Dacher Keltner, and Barbara Fredrickson.

Watch
 

Greater Good Resources

 
 
» MORE STUDIES
 
 
» MORE ORGS
 

Book of the Week

The Path to Purpose By William Damon Looks at how children are hampered in their search for meaning, and how concerned adults can help them find it.

» READ MORE
 
Is she flirting with you? Take the quiz and find out.
"It is a great good and a great gift, this Greater Good. I bow to you for your efforts to bring these uplifting and illuminating expressions of humanity, grounded in good science, to the attention of us all."  
Jon Kabat-Zinn

Best-selling author and founder of the Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction program

thnx advertisement