The other day I wrote about a bank advertisement calling for less greed and more happiness. It turns out that these two qualities are directly related. The less greedy, and more generous, we get—the happier we are.
"Duh", I hear you cry.
This really shouldn't come as too much of a surprise. From volunteering getting you more sex to living simply creating a sense of greater well being, we already know that the more we connect with others, and the less we focus on material goods and monetary wealth, the happier we'll be.
But a new report from Co-Operatives UK on The Great Sharing Economy adds another important data point to this argument:
Why are there 38 million empty car seats on the road every day when the majority of us would prefer to travel with others? The fact that we share less means an increase of around 2% in the number of commuter cars on the road every day.
Sharing makes 8 in 10 of us feel happier, so why aren’t we doing more?
Surveying over 1,000 Brits, the report finds that we are sharing less than a decade ago; we have more stuff than ever before; but that we would like to find more ways to share our time and resources with others. 8 out of 10 people surveyed said sharing made them happier, and 75% believed that sharing is good for the environment.
So there we have it. Happiness is a real and important metric of progress. Sharing makes us happier. And the sharing economy is kicking into overdrive.
Paradigm shift, anyone? Luckily it's astoundingly easy to start sharing more. Just do it.