Happiness: Yes There’s an App for That.

Photo by skippyjon via flickr.

I’ve got an app to track my spending, an app to book restaurant reservations, an app that makes my Facebook mobile uploads look like they were taken by a professional photog, and even an app that reminds me just how many laps I swam last week. Now there’s an app to track happiness.

The site Track Your Happiness and its corresponding iPhone app tracks your happiness based on factors you personally find associated with it.

How it works:

1. You’ll be asked a series of questions for statistical purposes—the founders are putting the results toward their own scientific research study.

2. You’ll receive email or text messages throughout the day asking you to report how you are feeling and what you are doing. You’ll decide when and how often you’ll be asked.

3. The app then prepares a happiness report for you, which will change according to what you’re doing, who you’re with, where you are, what time of day it is and other factors.

The project was founded as part of Matt Killingsworth’s doctoral research at Harvard University. The research has some serious cred, too– it’s approved by the Harvard University Committee for the Use of Human Subjects. Matt works in the lab of Daniel Gilbert.

So far, the app has found some interesting results:

A main cause of people’s unhappiness is how often their minds wander: 46.9 percent of people’s time is spent thinking on something other than what they’re doing. The app founders say mind-wandering accounts for about 5 percent of a person’s happiness. The more it’s wandering, the less happy you are.

So what are you waiting for? Go ahead and find out what makes you happy!

Follow the Happiness team on Twitter @trackhappiness

 

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