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Happiness courses are a real thing you can study

Cheering yourself up when you’re feeling down can be a real challenge. Sure, you can try to lighten the mood by doing something enjoyable like eating comfort food, but that doesn’t always work. Thankfully, it appears you can now take happiness courses to legitimately turn that frown upside down.

The science of happiness

Over at the University of Bristol, students have the opportunity to study the “science of happiness”. This course focuses on a range of science-based strategies that are designed to help people live happier lives. It was first established in 2018, and later became a permanent fixture at the university in October 2019.

Spread out over 12 weeks, the course uses psychological research and neuroscience to educate students on how to achieve happiness. That also comes with an understanding of what happiness actually is, and why it’s so important in our lives.

Mental health struggles

It’s no surprise that happiness courses like this have come about now, what with the growing concern around mental health. As the world has developed a greater understanding of mental health disorders, it’s become clearer just how much some people struggle inside their heads.

Apparently, most universities in the UK have seen a significant increase in people accessing support services over the last seven years. More and more students are looking for help, and this course could give them precisely what they need.

Things are looking up

Although it’s still a relatively new program, feedback so far has reportedly been “extremely positive”. Bruce Hood, a teacher on the course, believes his work has the capability to “empower” his students to take better care of themselves. He’s confident that by the end of the 12 weeks, most people will priortise their own happiness more, and understand how best to stay positive. He says there’s more than enough evidence to prove that the work “improves mental wellbeing”. The only question is how long the effects of this can last.

We expect that Hood will learn the answer to that in the coming years, and we hope his findings will be favorable. A future full of happier, healthier minds sounds like utopia to us. It probably does to many other people out there, too.

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