A European cultural study today revealed that adults could take inspiration from the next generation on how to choose and create happiness.
Today’s young people are no longer dreamers but doers. Unlike adults who tend to strive for future goals, this generation does small, multiple and attainable things to choose happiness every day.
Generation Z value the smaller things in life and place more importance on happiness than ever before. In Ireland, friendships and family are the greatest drivers of happiness and this generation also appreciates the power of a smile!
• 84% of Irish teens surveyed agree that you can make a choice to be happy, compared to just 72% of their European counterparts.
• 70% of Irish teens focus on happiness with only 51% of their European peers making it a priority.
• Irish teens put ‘friendship’ (47%) and ‘family’ (40%) as most important thing in finding happiness. ‘Social life’ is also important at 13%.
• Irish teens are a smiley bunch, with 73% agreeing that ‘seeing a stranger smile in the street’ prompts them to smile too.
• Irish teens value the smaller things in life, with 37% claiming that it’s ‘appreciating the smaller moments’ and ‘a general sense of well-being and feeling contented’ (35%) and ‘having goals and achieving them’ (17%).
Dr. Mark Williamson, Director of Action for Happiness said; “Generation Z are placing more importance on happiness than ever before. While adults need to work at mindfulness, for this generation it comes more naturally. Rather than deferring happiness to the future and associating happiness with big - and sometimes unachievable - goals, Generation Z is much more focused on living in the moment. Today’s young people are choosing to thrive by proactively building their own happiness and coming together as the ‘We’ generation not the ‘Me’ generation. Irish teens in particular are also pros at focusing on happiness, 21% more than their European peers.”
Experts who carried out the detailed cultural study highlighted three key ways that Generation Z is approaching happiness:
• Doing small, multiple and attainable things, rather than striving for big, singular and intimidating goals
• Allowing themselves to be spontaneously joyful and playful
• For young people, happiness is a social emotion, and being hyper-connected means happiness can be shared instantly and in real time
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Notes to editors:
About the cultural study: Why Generation Z is Choosing Happiness
Coca-Cola is one of the first global brands to spotlight what happiness means to young people today, through their eyes and the perspectives of world-leading happiness experts.
For the ‘Why Generation Z is Choosing Happiness – A Happiness Study’,
The Cultural Intelligence Practice at Flamingo London then pressure-tested the findings with a round table expert salon event in February before a panel of cultural commentators including:
Beth Reekles, Teen and YA author, named one of the world’s most influential teens by Time magazine (UK)
Tom Palmaerts, youth trendwatcher (Belgium)
Chloe Bingham, teen and employment campaigner (UK)
Dr Robert Holden, Director of The Happiness Project (UK)
Dr Tom Chatfield, technology theorist, gaming and teen expert (UK)
Dr Mark Williamson, director at Action for Happiness (UK)
Additional interviews were also conducted with:
Dr Jean-Pierre Ternaux, neuroscientist (France) Sue Jackson, fashion and beauty blogger (Ireland)
Tommie Rose, teen and entrepreneur (UK) Chinny Brown, teen (UK)
Dr Anne-Lise Goddings, paediatrician and cognitive neuroscientist, expert on the teenage brain (UK)
About Choose Happiness
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For 129 years,
About Coca Cola Ireland
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