Meaning is personal to each of us. However, a new study published June 15 in the journal Social Psychological and Personality Science suggests that some people might be better at finding that meaning than others — and the difference may come down to politics.
According to the study, which compiled survey results from more than 50,000 participants in 16 countries, people who identified as political conservatives were more likely to find meaning and satisfaction in their lives than liberals were.
“Political conservatives tend to be happier than liberals, a finding that has been labeled the ‘happiness gap’ in media reporting,” a team of psychologists from the University of Southern California (USC) wrote in the new paper. “One conservative commentator even described it as ‘niftily self-reinforcing; it depresses liberals.'”