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Matilde Campodonico, Associated Press
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4 ways people are finding happiness

How are people finding happiness?

Well, it’s not through McDonald’s new mascot, named “Happy.” In fact, the mascot seems to be scaring kids.

And it’s not by playing the song “Happy” in Iran, where you can reportedly get arrested, according to CNN.

Here are a few ways people are finding happiness in our modern world.

Family time

Business Insider posted seven different ways people make choices that make them happy. The choices included exercising, spending time outside and choosing to spend time with their family.

“So, bury the hatchet with your brother-in-law and focus on your parents, children, or siblings if you want to be happier,” Business Insider reported. “Happy people might not always want to, but they find at least a few minutes every day (often much more) to do things to improve their family relationships.”

Greek life

Vox’s Libby Nelson reported on Wednesday that fraternity brothers have happier lives after their college years end, according to a Gallup poll that offered a look into what makes a happy post-college life.

Even as the study looked into race, gender and background, the results were the same for these kind of students, Nelson wrote. And the type of school — public or private — didn’t matter, either.

“Still, it's possible that the type of students who join fraternities and sororities are also more inclined to make personal connections with professors and to get involved in extracurriculars in the first place, or that students at colleges with Greek life are more likely to be happy after graduation than students at colleges without, regardless of whether they pledge,” Nelson wrote.

Rainy days

What else is making people happy? Rainy days, apparently. The Telegraph reported on Wednesday that days flooded with wet weather were just as rewarding as days with the sun shining.

In fact, Paul Dolan, a professor at the London School of Economics, told The Telegraph that people who live in sunnier climates get too familiar with their surroundings and don’t get any happier than someone in a wetter climate.

“They expected that people in California would be happier because it is more sunny, but they found that levels of happiness were exactly the same,” Dolan told The Telegraph. “If it is sunny every day, you get used to it and the sunshine doesn’t make you any happier. Most of the time the weather doesn’t affect out well-being at all. But when we think about it, and think that it does, that’s when we get miserable.”

Shopping for you

Surprisingly, materialistic people aren’t any happier than other people, The Huffington Post reported. It’s not necessarily that they are unhappy with their purchases and store-shopping manners, but rather with how society is treating them, HuffPost reported.

“Typically, when you’re congruent with your values, you’re happier,” Ryan Howell, an associate professor of psychology at San Francisco, told The Huffington Post. "But there are certain value systems that are shunned by society. When we find out someone is materialistic, we think less of them, and that drives their happiness down.”

But there’s a solution for materialistic people. It’s less about impressing people and more about buying what makes them happy, HuffPost reported.

“Our models predict that if [materialists] make more authentic purchases, rather than trying to impress others, they will be happier,” Howell told HuffPost.

Email: hscribner@deseretdigital.com, Twitter: @herbscribner