Making America Happy Again

To make America happy again, society has to figure out how to make our country whole. Understanding what divides Americans — and what gives them hope — could be critical to improving their well-being and the nation’s. By tracking patterns in well-being, and creating programs based on the results, we can take steps toward tackling the malaise that afflicts many of us, including the physically and mentally stressed, the jobless, the aging and those struggling with drug use. Surveying well-being and ill-being involves asking people how satisfied they are with their lives, what their hopes for the future are and whether they recently experienced such emotions as anger or contentment. When I explored such surveys for my 2017 book on well-being, some surprising patterns emerged.

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