Happiness becomes less the high-energy, totally-psyched experience of a teenager partying while his parents are out of town, and more the peaceful, relaxing experience of an overworked mom who’s been dreaming of that hot bath all day. The latter isn’t less “happy” than the former — it’s a different way of understanding what happiness is. Social psychologists describe this change as a consequence of a gradual shifting from promotion motivation — seeing our goals in terms of what we can gain, or how we can end up better off, to prevention motivation — seeing our goals in terms of avoiding loss and keeping things running smoothly. Everyone, of course, has both motivations. But the relative amounts of each differ from person to person, and can shift with experience as we age. (via How Happiness Changes With Age - Heidi Grant Halvorson - The Atlantic)
- Research from Northwestern University in the journal Psychology and Agingsuggests that promotion-mindedness is most prevalent among the young, because youth is a time for focusing on your hopes for the future, what youideally want to do — you don’t have much in the way of responsibilities, and you still believe you can do anything you set your mind to. That and you think you are immortal. This is more or less a recipe for strong promotion motivation.