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date: 29 March 2017

Abstract and Keywords

Success is assumed to bring people happiness, but happiness may also bring success. The authors review longitudinal and experimental studies examining this causal link from happiness to success in a variety of domains, including social relationships, work, and health. The empirical evidence suggests that happiness plays a causal role in the attainment of success, as well as in the practice of behaviors related to success. This occurs through the frequent experience of positive affect. Positive affect may increase the likelihood of successful outcomes by rendering individuals more likely to approach people and situations, signaling that things are going well, and helping to build people’s intellectual, social, physical, and psychological resources and skills.

Keywords: happiness, well-being, positive affect, success, social relationships, work, health

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