If there’s one thing Americans are good at it’s the pursuit of happiness. The only problem is that happiness is an elusive goal. Until recently, at least. In the last year, Harvard researcher, Robert J. Waldinger has published and publicized the findings of the longest study of human development ever completed. What the researchers from Harvard medical school discovered was that the secret to happiness is found in developing and maintaining close, intimate relationships. Researchers studied a group of men for 75 years and discovered that no matter what their economic, educational or social status, the common denominator for greater health and happiness was the quality of relationship.
Why would I share that in a blog for the multifamily housing industry? For lots of reasons. First, because regardless of your stance on new year resolutions, it can’t hurt to spend some time considering if our pursuit of the good life is actually aimed in the right direction. But also because we have the unique privilege (if we choose to accept it) of creating space for community. Apartment communities are ripe for helping people connect—thereby increasing their health and happiness.
Fostering a sense of community is a common tagline for us, but I think we do a poor job of informing our residents and others of the benefits of connecting. What if we could really claim that living in our community could add years to life and increase happiness! It’s a no-brainer. Here’s to a new year of connectedness.