Today I’m nerding out with Dr. Robert Waldinger, professor of psychiatry at Harvard Medical School and co-author of The Good Life: Lessons From the World’s Longest Scientific Study on Happiness. Dr. Waldinger is also a Zen master (Roshi) who teaches meditation worldwide.
In this episode, we explore Dr. Waldinger’s fascinating research on what makes a “good life” based on the longest study of adult life that has ever been done – the Harvard Study of Adult Development. He shares his insights on the power of relationships and how they affect our mental and physical health, practical tips for improving our happiness, and how to create and nurture thriving relationships. This is a pod you won’t want to miss!
01:55 What is the happiness study?
04:34 Relationships help us live longer
09:26 Impacts of life events
11:03 High-conflict relationships
12:27 Stress and the body
14:11 Attachment styles and relationship longevity
17:21 Relationships and the body
19:26 Social fitness
21:20 Be curious
24:30 Stratifying the data
27:42 Effects of the study on participants
31:39 Being in Zen
33:28 Religion and spiritual practice
36:39 Rituals and habits
38:38 Study results and expanding the research