Political Well-Being

Going on marches, signing petitions, staging rallies and other political activism could actually improve your health and general well-being, according to two new studies.

Going on marches, signing petitions, staging rallies and other political activism could actually improve your health and general well-being, according to two new studies. "So find two university psychologists in new research that looks for the first time at the link between political activity and wellbeing. Malte Klar and Tim Kasser started by interviewing two sets of around 350 college students, both about their degree of political engagement and their levels of happiness and optimism. Both times, they found that those most inclined to go on a demo were also the cheeriest. So there's a link – but can politics actually make a person happier? In the third study, the academics took a bunch of students and divided them up into groups. The first were encouraged to write to the management of the college cafeteria asking for tastier food. The next lot wrote asking the cafe to source local or Fairtrade products. They were then tested on their wellbeing, and the group who had involved themselves in the political debate were far and away the strongest on the ‘vitality’ scale: they felt more alive and enriched than those who merely complained about the menu."

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