The Harvard Study of Adult Development is one of the longest-running studies about adult life at nearly 80 years old.
The study, known as the Grant Study, started with 269 Harvard undergraduates and of that number, 19 are still alive today.
The study revealed a lot of things but one key idea about happiness emerged – “That the only thing that really matters in life are your relationships to other people.”
Today’s articles all focus on that idea but the first two involve children and are particularly poignant. If you have children in your life, whether your own or others you care deeply for, these articles will likely trigger a reaction.
Warning, they are NOT easy to read yet are incredibly powerful.
My 16 year old won’t say I Love You [The FI Old Guys] – OG2 shares why he’s seeking financial independence. As he puts it, he needs to retire as soon as possible. I’ve never before read a blog post with this breadth of openness, honesty, and emotion.
It’s later than you think [J.R. Storment] – “Eight years ago, during the same month, I had twin boys and co-founded Cloudability. About three months ago Cloudability was acquired. About three weeks ago we lost one of our boys […] After an hour of waiting in shock out front, I told the armed police officers guarding the doors that I couldn’t wait any longer. They allowed me to go out to the deck facing the kids room to peer through the sliding glass window. He lay in his bed, covers neatly on, looking peacefully asleep. I put my hand on the glass and lost it.” J.R. Storment shares the story of the passing of his 8-year-old son and his regrets.
The Tail End [Wait But Why] – “It turns out that when I graduated from high school, I had already used up 93% of my in-person parent time. I’m now enjoying the last 5% of that time. We’re in the tail end.” The first two pieces were about children but this one is going in the other direction.
I want to leave you with this TEDxBeaconStreet talk by Robert Waldinger titled “What makes a good life? Lessons from the longest study on happiness.” The study in question is the Grant Study I mentioned in the introduction.
Lastly, go hug someone you care about right now.