What's the key to our happiness? It's all in the genes
The key to our happiness is strongly affected by the genes we inherit, according to new research.
A study comparing identical and non-identical twins indicates that genes could control half the personality characteristics that keep us happy. Our lifestyle, career and relationships are linked to the other half.
The study compared 900 pairs of identical and fraternal twins and looked for people who tended not to worry, and those who were conscientious and sociable.
Identical twins share exactly the same genes, whereas fraternal twins differ genetically. The difference in results between the two groups suggested that personality traits were 50% influenced by people’s genes.
Lead researcher, Dr Alexander Weiss commented: ‘Although happiness is subject to a wide range of external influences we have found there is a heritable component of happiness which can be entirely explained by genetic architecture of personality.’
However, if you appear not to have inherited the happy gene, all is not lost. According to another medical expert, we can still train ourselves to be happier version of ourselves. That’s a relief.