“New research has shown how positive social relationships in childhood and adolescence are key to adult well-being, while academic achievement has little effect.
“Scientists do not know much about how aspects of childhood and adolescent development – such as academic and social-emotional function – affect adult well-being.
“They define well-being as a mixture of sense of coherence, positive coping strategies, social engagement and self-perceived strengths.
“Researchers analysed data for 804 people, followed up for 32 years, who participated in the Dunedin Multidisciplinary Health and Development Study (DMHDS) in New Zealand.
“They measured the relationship between levels of family disadvantage in childhood, social connectedness in childhood, language development in childhood, social connectedness in adolescence, academic achievement in adolescence and well-being in adulthood. …
“Results showed there is a strong pathway from child and teen social connectedness to adult well-being – showing the significance of positive social relationships over the lifespan to adulthood.
“Also, the Journal of Happiness Studies research revealed the pathway from early language development – through adolescent academic achievement – to adult happiness was weak.”
Tip: Lead by example and teach a child how to build relationships with others.