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Daily Mirror
Daily Mirror
Andrew Young

Adults aged 50 and over are best at being 'happy with what they have', study finds

Adults aged 50 and over are most content with their lives, according to research.

A poll of 2,000 adults found those in this decade and beyond are best at being ‘happy with what they have’ - and also report stronger relationships.

Holidays and time to spend on hobbies and interests featured in the top 10 things the over 50s are satisfied with, along with being debt free, having good health and knowing the children are happy.

A fifth of adults this age with kids still living at home also admit they are more than ready to get them moved out - and move on to the next stage of their life.

It also emerged more than one in 10 have a more active sex life than they ever had before.

Holidays and time to spend on hobbies and interests featured in the top 10 (Gary Burchell/Getty)

Three quarters of adults said having time to relax is what really makes them feel content, with those 50 and older likely to take four or more minibreaks or weekend getaways in an average year.

Simon Thompson, managing director of Warner Leisure Hotels, which operates 15 adult-only hotels across the UK and commissioned the research, said: “It’s no surprise that the results found a huge part of what makes people happy is simply having time to enjoy life.

“Our guests love unwinding in whatever way suits them - from dancing the night away to live entertainment, to relaxing in our spas, learning something new like archery, or indulging in delicious three-course meals.

“By the time they reach their 50s, people are more open to simply doing what they love when they want.”

Things that make adults over 50 feel serene also include learning to be happy with what they’ve got (54 per cent), and enjoying a leisurely tea or coffee in the morning (35 per cent).

Simple pleasures such as sunny days with clear skies, a good night’s sleep - and seeing old friends also featured in the list.

But the research found those under the age of 30 describe themselves as least content with life overall, stressing most about their finances and work/life balance.

Older Brits are most likely to consider themselves a ‘glass half full’ person, compared to other age groups, with 40 per cent of over-50s feeling this way.

This compares to just 24 per cent of under-30s, and only 28 per cent of those in their forties.

Simple pleasures like a good night's sleep also feature on the list (Getty)

Across all age groups, finances are the main thing that keeps Brits from feeling truly content with their lot (39 per cent), and 38 per cent worry about their fitness levels.

The research also explored the happiest moments of Brits’ lives to date, with the birth of children (32 per cent) at the top of the list.

This knocked most people’s wedding day into a distant second place (21 per cent), while 17 per cent said their happiest memory was the day they met their partner.

For 12 per cent, their happiest ever event was finally getting to go on the ‘dream holiday’ they’d always wanted, according to the data.

Simon Thompson added: “It’s nice to think that the older you get, the better it gets.

“It seems the 50s are the age when people start to appreciate what they have – and have more time to enjoy it.”


  1. Being happy with what you have
  2. Being happily married/in a relationship
  3. Being debt-free
  4. Having good health
  5. Knowing your children are happy
  6. Being mortgage-free
  7. Having time to spend on hobbies and interests
  8. Being comfortable financially
  9. Holidays with family
  10. Having a leisurely cup of tea or coffee in the morning
  11. Time with friends
  12. Time to perfect the garden
  13. Having a job you enjoy
  14. A nice view out of the kitchen window / from your house
  15. Walking the dog
  16. Knowing your pension is set up
  17. Having freedom to travel
  18. Being happy with the way you look
  19. Having a nice car
  20. Cuddling the cat
  21. Having a good social life
  22. Going to the pub regularly
  23. Having time to spend on crosswords or puzzles
  24. Holidays with friends
  25. A great sex life
  26. Having grandchildren
  27. Having your ‘forever home’
  28. Having savings for all the kids
  29. Being retired
  30. Having your will/after life care sorted

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