Happiness Apps for your SmartPhone: You can’t buy happiness, but there is an app for that!

Happiness is all the rage. Everyone from Oprah to Pharell Williams to the Dalai Lama will tell you ways to achieve this sometimes elusive quality of bliss, but for now Harvard has the last word: the Harvard Grant Study. The Grant Study followed 268 male Harvard undergraduates from the classes of 1938-1940 for 75 years.

“The 75 years and 20 million dollars expended on the Grant Study points … to a straightforward five-word conclusion: ‘Happiness is love. Full stop,’ ” This is from Harvard psychiatrist George Vaillant, who led the study from 1972 to 2004. (http://aplus.com/a/75-year-harvard-grant-study-happiness?so=Z3J7uJayHspmvneg5EACRU&ref=ns)
The five lessons we can learn from the Grant Study are pretty straightforward. Seeing them detailed in such a lengthy and prestigious study makes them feel weightier and possibly easier to achieve. Here they are:
  1. Love Is Really All That Matters – the only thing that matters in life is relationships. (“Happiness is only the cart; love is the horse.”).
  2. It’s About More than Money and Power –  they are only small parts of a much larger picture.
  3. Regardless of How We Begin Life, We Can All Become Happier.
  4. Connection Is Crucial – The study found strong relationships to be far and away the strongest predictor of life satisfaction.
  5. Challenges –- and the Perspective They Give You — Can Make You Happier – “the capacity to make gold out of shit,” as Vaillant puts it — have a significant effect on social support and overall well-being.

And while it is still true that you cannot buy happiness, these days it might just be a little easier to find.  We are not the only ones who believe that happiness might just be more accessible these days. Programmers and IT are all over it! There are hundreds of happiness apps designed to facilitate your journey to happiness (and the resulting longevity).

Your iPhone may not requisition the unrequited loves of your life, but it can help you keep connected to the things that will boost your happiness. Sleep, gratitude, mindfulness, good food, staying hydrated (you knew we’d bring it around to good hydration!), and making good choices all contribute to your ability to find happiness.

Here are five great happiness apps to get your started.

Gratitude Journal – http://getgratitude.co/
Calm – http://www.calm.com/ (this one is great – get calm right now!)
Sleep Better – https://www.runtastic.com/en/apps/sleepbetter
Water Your Body – http://www.foware.com/
Happy Habits: Choose Happiness – https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.excelatlife.happiness&hl=en