The pursuit of happiness is important to us all, but it sometimes seems that those moments of joy come when we least expect them. A study by leading scientists, published in the PNAS Journal, however, suggests that momentary happiness can be predicted by a mathematical equation. Here, Open Advertising review this study and consider the impact that mathematics can have on business as well.

“Happiness can seem a fleeting emotion, but it’s more predictable than many people imagine,” said Josh Peace, director of Open Advertising. “By studying when people are most happy, scientists have been able to pinpoint the causes of happiness and work out ways that we can increase our state of happiness. Positive thinking is important for all aspects of life, especially business, so this is an exciting breakthrough.”

The study was based on the results of both brain scans and risk-reward tasks set for volunteers. The results showed participants were most happy when they performed better than expected during the task. This shows that managing expectations are important if happiness is to be achieved. 26 people took part in the tasks, but the results were also analyzed from 18,000 people who played a specially designed smartphone app called ‘The Great Brain Experiment. The combined results clearly showed that there was a consistent correlation between rewards, expectation, and happiness. These results allowed the scientists to create the world’s first, and highly accurate, happiness equation.

This equation could have a major impact on society. The government already analyses statistics on national well-being, but this equation could help them gauge how happy the country really is. It’s hoped that the findings could also be used in the treatment of mood disorders. One of the key findings of the study is that people take risks to gain rewards, and through achieving these rewards obtain happiness.

“The study shows how important clear planning and expectation management and effective risk-taking are in life,” said Josh Peace of Open Advertising. “They’re just as vital in business as well. Although the equation relates to happiness as an emotion, it could equally be adapted to measure the likelihood of success in business. It’s important to remember that business success doesn’t come along by chance, but as the result of factors over which you have direct control.”

Marketing is one of these important factors. By correctly targeting, and then acquiring new customers, you can greatly increase your chances of success. Open Advertising are happy to help you with their customer acquisition and event marketing expertise.