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The Science of Happiness in Your 20s and 30s

As we navigate through the journey of life, our understanding and pursuit of happiness tend to evolve. Particularly, the phase between our 20s and 30s is a transformative period that shapes our perception of happiness. This article will delve into the science behind happiness during these crucial years.

The Definition of Happiness

Happiness is a subjective experience that varies from person to person. However, from a scientific perspective, it’s often defined as a combination of life satisfaction and having more positive emotions than negative ones.1 It’s not just about feeling good all the time; it’s also about cultivating personal growth, meaning, and fulfilment.

Happiness in Your 20s

Your twenties are a time for exploration and self-discovery. According to Erik Erikson’s stages of psychosocial development, this is when most people grapple with ‘identity versus role confusion’ and later ‘intimacy versus isolation’.2 Successfully navigating these stages can lead to increased happiness.

A study published in the journal Social Psychological and Personality Science found that people who feel they have made significant progress towards their personal goals during their twenties report higher levels of satisfaction later in life.3 Therefore, pursuing meaningful goals could be an essential ingredient for long-term happiness.

Happiness in Your 30s

In your thirties, priorities often shift towards building a stable life and nurturing relationships. A study in the Journal of Social Psychology found that people in their thirties tend to prioritise social goals more than personal ones, which contributes to increased happiness.<a href="


Gerard is a distinguished individual with a passion for the written word. With a Bachelor's degree in English Literature from the University of Sydney and a Master's in Creative Writing from the University of Melbourne, he has a firm grounding in the classics as well as a modern take on storytelling.

Gerard's career began in journalism, where he honed his skills in research and narrative, eventually transitioning into blogging to share his insights on a more personal platform. His blog, "Illusions of Wisdom", has become a popular source of commentary on a variety of topics, ranging from contemporary literature to societal observations, all infused with his signature wit and thoughtful analysis.

A man of eclectic tastes, Gerard is an avid collector of vintage typewriters, finding the mechanical beauty and history of each piece fascinating. When he's not clacking away at the keys of his latest find, he indulges in his love for nature through gardening. His backyard is a testament to this passion, with an array of native Australian plants that not only thrive in the local climate but also attract a variety of birdlife, which Gerard takes great joy in observing.

Gerard is also a keen traveller, having ventured across continents to explore different cultures and their stories. This love for exploration is not limited to the physical world; he's equally comfortable diving into the digital realm, where he engages with fellow enthusiasts in discussions about the intersection of technology and literature.

In his downtime, Gerard is an amateur chess player and enjoys the strategic depth of the game. He also finds solace in the calming strokes of watercolour painting, a hobby that complements his writing by allowing him to express himself in a burst of colour.

Through his blog, Gerard continues to inspire his readers, encouraging them to find beauty in the mundane and to always remain curious about the world around them.

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