Would You Exchange Professional Triumph for Personal Blow?

Sandra Bullock won an Oscar and shortly after found out her husband was cheating on her. The NY Times asks "the philosophic question of the day: Would you take that as a deal? Would you exchange a tremendous professional triumph for a severe personal blow?" Research suggests the gap between success and happiness boils down to personal bonds. Here's what David Brooks has to say:

Marital happiness is far more important than anything else in determining personal well-being. If you have a successful marriage, it doesn’t matter how many professional setbacks you endure, you will be reasonably happy. If you have an unsuccessful marriage, it doesn’t matter how many career triumphs you record, you will remain significantly unfulfilled.

This isn’t just sermonizing. This is the age of research, so there’s data to back this up. Over the past few decades, teams of researchers have been studying happiness. Their work, which seemed flimsy at first, has developed an impressive rigor, and one of the key findings is that, just as the old sages predicted, worldly success has shallow roots while interpersonal bonds permeate through and through.

You can read the entire article at The New York Times here.

Photo credit: Shutterstock

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