June 14, 2021

Happy but pessimistic


The Spaniards confess to being mostly happy, but given the future that opens in this 2020, pessimism continues to grow. Happiness can be an antidote to what is coming

Objectively, there is data to think that people can be happier today than a hundred years ago. In 1919, Europe was devastated by a bloody war and, although in peace – the Treaty of Versailles was signed in June – it began to lay the foundations that would turn the continent into a great concentration camp. Education, public health, working conditions, child labor, gender equality, civil liberties, political rights, living conditions … all those who make a better life are superior to a century ago. However, it seems not to be enough to ensure happiness. Undoubtedly, it is an ambiguous concept, each time with less content and managed by the marketing of happiness. On the other hand, an malaise persists that does not always have to do with the standard of living. Moreover, more development corresponds to greater dissatisfaction. It is true that the poorest settle for less – it cannot be much – that they even appreciate more gestures of affectivity that in opulent societies have ceased to have value. Anxiety and depression (according to the World Health Organization, in Spain there are 2.4 million people with this disease, 5.2% of the population) have become part of a society that fails to alleviate that vital anguish with progress and growth Only in France, one of the most developed countries in the world, one in four citizens ingests antidepressants and anxiolytics. According to the annual survey conducted by Gallup International coinciding with the end of the year, African countries, far removed from the usual levels of well-being developed, are more optimistic for the future. That 73% of Nigerians say they are happy is an example of this trend.

Spain, which declares itself a country (with 59% and very happy, with 13%), is, however, pessimistic about the immediate future that opens in 2020. Let’s say that the supposed joy of living acts as an antidote to What may come. The Spanish perception is much more balanced than the Italian, which paint a more black future.



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