Got Facebook? Say cheese!
September 4, 2012 by
Categories: Individual, Research

Not to report too much on Facebook, but an interesting study was published over the summer about how Facebook photos predict later happiness. It was a small study, but in it, researchers coded a single Facebook picture for both men and women at their first semester of college and then compared that to their ratings of life satisfaction 3 1/2 years later at graduation.

Image by atsoram

They found that smile intensity was related to relationship satisfaction. They also found that smile intensity predicted changes in life satisfaction over time: the more intense the smile, the higher reports of life satisfaction.

As with all research, we can’t read too much into this. Faking your next profile pic isn’t going to make your life better and happy 3 1/2 years down the road. This could, however, be a good way to take a self inventory and even get feedback from friends and family. Are you happy now? How are your relationships? Do they make you happy?

If not, now may be the time to make some changes. Here on CollectiveInquiry, we have written about happiness. You can also consider visiting with a therapist or even talking to a good friend. Addressing these things now, and making that smile real, could have an impact on your life 3 1/2 years later.

(Thumbnail image by greyman.)

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