While the global pandemic coronavirus outbreak has brought the world into a standstill, it gave the people plenty of time and opportunities to bring some positive changes in their lives, as per the experts who were involved in the eighth annual World Happiness Report which was published on today.
The report, where the countries get their ranks according to happiness, will give the clues to wellbeing that will help in the coming weeks and months amid this situation of coronavirus crisis, says the co-director of the Wellbeing Programme at the LSE’s Centre for Economic Performance Prof Richard Layard.
UK in the list of 20?
Finland remains at the number one place for the third year on a successive way, while the UK has jumped from 15th place to 13th. The report which was compiled by a group of independent experts and produced by the UN Sustainable Development Solutions Network used six variables – GDP per capita, social support, healthy life expectancy, freedom, generosity and absence of corruption in more than 150 countries around the world to prepare their report as well.
Research has said that co-operation and social support are the main things to happiness; Layard said, “To get through this we’re going to have to develop a much higher level of social responsibility. Some people are going to have to stay in quarantine, and others are going to have to support them to do that. My hope is that it will encourage a move from an atomised society to a much more caring one.”
Vanessa King who is the head psychologist for Action for Happiness which is the UK partner organisation to the World Happiness Report shared that social factors and trust are as important as income and being healthy now. Amid this situation, the more there will be social trust and support from others, despite being isolated, the better we will be and also the future.
However, looking out for others now can be helpful for not only for others but also for us as well. Even creat a neighbourhood WhatsApp group to make sure isolated people don’t feel lonely can be great psychologically too as the coronavirus, has brought something essential like there is no “us” and “them” in the world before this, but now it’s there. In fact, it has become all of us against this virus and not against them.
King further added, “People are finding it hard to focus and that’s entirely understandable. What I’d suggest is that you try to be really clear about your intentions. Don’t get sucked into a continual stream of news: decide at what points in the day you’re going to update yourself. Think about who you need to in touch with, who you need to support – both in your immediate family, and the community around you.”