There’s no such thing as a mid-life crisis, according to myth-busting Canadian researchers, who said contrary to popular belief, people get happier in middle age.
The “Up, Not Down” study by researchers at the University of Alberta tracked a group of high school students for 25 years and another group of students graduating college for 14 years.
All were asked the same question at different ages: “How happy are you with your life?”
Researchers found that self-reported bliss grew steadily from age 18, into participants’ 30s and early 40s, with only a slight dip in cheer at age 43, researchers said.
“I think it’s because life is more difficult for younger people than for people in middle age,” said lead researcher Nancy Galambos, whose work appeared in the journal Developmental Psychology.
The research casts doubt on the long-held notion, depicted in films such as “Mrs. Doubtfire” and the “Bridges of Madison County,” that happiness drops — and Porsche buying begins — at mid-life.
“There’s a lot of uncertainty (for 20-somethings). But by middle age, a lot of people have worked that out and are quite satisfied through the earliest child-bearing years,” Galambos said.