Mind & Body

You Can Take the Authentic Happiness Inventory to See Your Overall Happiness

Are you happy right now? Have you been feeling happy lately? Are you happy with your life overall? If you're not too sure, a psychology questionnaire called the Authentic Happiness Inventory could give you an idea of how happy you are compared to others.

C'mon Get Happy

The Authentic Happiness Inventory Questionnaire was developed in 2005 by psychologist Christopher Peterson. A former University of Michigan professor of psychology and organizational studies, Peterson has also been among the 100 most widely cited psychologists in the world. His happiness inventory is certainly a solid representation of his work — he was a member of the Positive Psychology Steering Committee, a consulting editor to the Journal of Positive Psychology, and the Positive Psychology Book Series Editor for Oxford University Press. In short, he knows happy.

Peterson's questionnaire aims to help you discover your levels of "authentic" happiness, which in this context means your overall satisfaction with your life. The free 24-item questionnaire covers three distinct areas: positive emotion (feeling warmth, pleasure, and comfort), engagement (staying present and in the moment), and meaning (fulfilling your life's purpose). For each item in the questionnaire, you'll select one of five responses that best describes how you've felt in the past week, including today. As an example, the responses will look something like this: "My life is a bad one; My life is an OK one; My life is a good one; My life is a very good one; My life is a wonderful one." At the end of the questionnaire, your results will automatically be calibrated between 1 (least happy) and 5 (extraordinarily happy).

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Happy Happy, Joy Joy

Some of the most extraordinarily happy responses are a little extra, to say the least. Here are some examples of the happiest options within the questionnaire items: "I spend practically every moment every day doing things that are important," "I have so much enthusiasm that I feel I can do most anything," "I like my daily routine so much that I almost never take breaks from it," and "If I were keeping score in life, I would be far ahead."

Without further ado, you can take the questionnaire yourself for free right here, courtesy of the University of Pennsylvania. Head's up — you'll have to create a free account in order to take the quiz. Another thing to remember, according to the site, is that "we can only tell you how your scores compared to those of others using the site and thank you for your kind contribution to this research." The score of the average quiz-taker is 3.24 out of a possible 5.

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Want to have the happiest life possible? Check out Peterson's book "Pursuing the Good Life: 100 Reflections on Positive Psychology." We handpick reading recommendations we think you may like. If you choose to make a purchase through that link, Curiosity will get a share of the sale.

Written by Joanie Faletto July 9, 2018

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