Those who are married, rather than simply in a relationship, are happier with their personal levels of success than anyone else, a poll has found.
For most of us, success is not about fame or fortune but rather about such things as having good friends and enjoying good health.
A Happiness Poll of 2,000 adults, by healthcare to energy giant GE, found more than half – 52 per cent – were either happy or very happy with their level of success. But for those who were married or in a civil partnership, the figure rose to 60 per cent.
Happiness with personal levels of success also rises as people get older, perhaps because they can look back on what they have achieved.
Success does not merely depend on money in the bank. The happiest people appear to be those with the best work-life balance, who can spend time with friends or family. Three-quarters of those aged 55-plus say they have the balance right, compared with just over half of 16 to 24-year-olds.
GE, whose businesses include energy, finance, transport, health and aerospace, commissioned the study to launch a schools educational programme called Build My Future.
Its UK chief executive Mark Elborne said: “Success is not just about fame and fortune, it is about achieving what you set out to achieve.
“Having family, security, skills that make you stand out or a good network of friends, family and workmates are seen by individuals as the measure of personal success.
“It is interesting to note the importance of balance to ensure people feel happy and successful in life.”