August 12, 2019 100

An Experiment in Gratitude | The Science of Happiness

An Experiment in Gratitude | The Science of Happiness

Participant 1: Shut up [laughs]
Participant 2: What? Wait, wait. Participant 3: Oh he’s gonna be so embarrassed. [title music] Julian Huguet: What makes you happy?
Having fun? Hanging out with friends?
Delicious food? Making money?
Well consider this. Psychologists have scientifically proven that one of the greatest contributing
factors to overall happiness in your life is how much gratitude you show.
Yup. Think about that. Go ahead and marinate on that for a second.
You can thank me later if you want. It will make you feel better according to
this study. You go ahead and click on it and read it if
you want. Or, you can keep watching because we read
it, we thought it might be fun to test out for ourselves.
We gathered a selection of volunteers to act as our subjects.
First we gave them a test. They didn’t know what we were looking for.
But they gave us a pretty good idea of their current level of happiness.
We asked them to close their eyes and think of somebody who was really influential in
their life. Somebody who did something really amazing
or important for them. We had them write down as much as they could
about why this person was so important. Now a lot of them thought at this point the
experiment was over until we really put them on the spot and tried to get them to call
that person and read what they wrote about them.
Thank you Jessica. We are going to have to have you call your mother.
So who was that right person for you? Participant 1: The person is my sister Erica.
JH: We’re gonna give Erica a call. Participant 1: [laughs] Okay.
JH: Who’d you end up picking? Participant 3: Friend of mine, Greg Haines.
Participant 4: Her name is Dora. Participant 5: My college accounting instructor.
JH: Really! Is this someone you’re still in touch with today?
P 5: No I’m assuming that he is passed on. JH: That’s a shame.
P5: To the great beyond. JH: You up for it?
P3: Um, uh yes. JH: What would you say if we called up Dora?
P4: We can try but she lives in Britain. JH: In Britain?
P2: I don’t know her number by heart, this is awful.
JH: That’s fine, I don’t know my mom’s phone number by heart.
P5: If it’s true that those who are gone on are looking down on us, maybe he’ll recognize
he is great. [on phone]: Hi sweetheart!
P2: Hey how you doing. Um you gotta second? Where you at, the hotel?
[phone]: I am, I’m in the hotel. You scared me when you asked if I had a second, I thought
something was wrong P2: No I’m on this little TV show and they
told me to talk about the person that influenced me the most, and I picked you and they’re
making me call, they’re making me call you. [phone]: Oh wonderful!
[phone dialing] [voicemail] [phone dialing] P1: Oh come on.
[phone]: Hello? P1: Hi! Erica, it’s me.
P2: Alright so I gotta read you this paragraph, can you hear me?
[phone]: Yes I can. Go ahead sweetheart. P2: Alright. The person that influenced me
the most would be my mother, Marlow Dawson. She is a single mother of two, she is a very
hard-worker and dedicated to her family. P3: Hey Craig, this is Lowy. Um, this is gonna
be a funny little voicemail so I hope you enjoy it.
P4: I’m so sorry for calling you at 4 o’clock in the morning!
P1: I have to read this to you okay? You can’t say anything or I don’t know. You can respond
but, I probably will just keep going [laughs] okay?
[phone]: Is everything okay? P1: Yes! But I have to read this out loud
to you. P5: The person who has had the biggest impact
on my life, outside of Jesus Christ who is responsible for my existence, was my college
accounting instructor. He had a joy and enthusiasm for his job like no other teacher I have ever
known. P2: I love her to death, and she keeps me
going with positive talk, she is a woman that knows what she wants and won’t give up until
it is achieved. [phone]: Oh pumpkin, I don’t know what to,
I’m about to cry because that’s so beautiful. I have to say that’s just wonderful.
P3: I first met Craig on an independent feature film set in Whitefish, Montana. I recently
have been sending Craig a lot of positive thoughts as he suffered a series of health
problems. Despite his medical problems, he’s continued to work and take pleasure in the
small things in life like sitting quietly with his wife Jeanine on the porch.
P1: Erica is my older sister and my best friend. Sometimes it even feels like we are twins!
She is my number one fan and my number one supporter. She makes me happy because despite
all my mistakes and my decisions, she still loves me no matter what.
P4: Your friendship is everything. And you are one of the most important person in my
life. P1: Even when she has a kid and many children
I will love her more than her kids! Okay, maybe not. I will never forget when she flew
3000 miles at the drop of a phone call to save me from a break-up.
[phone]: I’m being blessed by having a son like you. I love you.
P3: Bye! [phone]: Why did you do this to me?
P1: [laughs] I don’t know because they made me do it!
P4: Thank you for picking up, bye sweetie! P1: And then they’re like here you’re gonna
write this letter and then I wrote like this whole long-ass letter which you know I don’t
write. And then all of a sudden they’re like “hey guess what you’re gonna call her and
you’re gonna read her this letter and it was like what the [expletive] [laughs]. JH: Before we let them go we gave our subjects one more happiness test. Now we mixed up and
rephrased the questions so they didn’t know they were taking the same test twice. For
those who took the time to actually write something down but couldn’t make the phone
call for whatever reason we saw happiness increase between 2 and 4 percent. Good, but
not exactly mind-blowing. Now for those who actually picked up the phone and personally
expressed their gratitude, we saw increases between 4 and 19 percent. So either way! Expressing
your gratitude will making you a happier person. But you want to know something really interesting?
The person who experienced the biggest jump in happiness was the least happy person who
walked in the door. What does that mean? That means if you’re having a particularly tough
time, trying this out will more likely have a greater impact on you. Trust me! I’m in
a lab coat. In fact, while you’re at it, film it and upload it to us and we’ll do something
awesome with it. I’m Julian and this has been The Science of Happiness. SoulPancake

100 Replies to “An Experiment in Gratitude | The Science of Happiness”

  • museknownasmoose says:

    Came here from dr mike!! (Really hate doing this but his channel deserves it)

  • FayJ Jama says:


  • Jdbsjevsjsvdbsbsbdbeb bdbdbdhshsbshshshshs says:

    I don't have anyone important to me tho……

  • Marish Lebnan says:

    لأن شكرتم لازيدنكم

  • Alex T. says:

    I'm crying right now and i miss my coach so much and i'm so sad they moved away and i just don't talk to them anymore

  • TheHeavenPrince1 says:

    That sudden wierd sound at the end of the video "SOUL PANCAKE SUBSCCCCRIBEEE" killed all of my feelings and emotions I had after watching the video Grrrrrrr….????

  • diztiinct says:

    Good for them 🙂 but you gotta have positive persons in your life to begin with

  • Kiara says:

    good antidepressent dr

  • LoveMe,com says:

    It is such a beautiful scientific experiment of showing gratitude to the person who gave the biggest impact in your life. Seeing their reaction can boost the level of your happiness. Watching this video made me emotional. I almost teared up.

  • Plymouth Church UCC Seattle says:


  • Jasmine Libert says:

    I'm curious as to how they measured and quantified "happiness." But this was a really sweet video nonetheless. It made me think about several people in my life who have been sincerely influential

  • Read Like Never Before says:

    This is so cute. A marv! ?

  • Hlehle Finances says:

    This video made me happy??

  • Nel_HasCake says:

    I don't have anyone to express my gratitude to, I'v been kind of going through stuff on my own.

  • Abaz Basler says:

    I reach the end of the video about to cry from happiness and then all the sudden it goes “soulpancake” and made me laugh so hard

  • IceDragon56 says:

    Lol, I just wanna thank you so much. And I do trust you. Nice lab coat btw ?

  • mahima rajiv says:

    Notice the Hickey (at 0:50)

  • lisa baumann says:

    i just really want a dog.

  • lisa baumann says:

    my most important person is my uncle, he died of cancer 2 years ago.

  • Kristin Trisha Deetlefs says:

    This is beautiful… #whyyoumakemecry

  • Dilz M says:

    That old man touched my heart

  • Emilie VIGUIER says:

    Omg I cried 🙂

  • Janae The Weird One says:

    I live with my mom and my mom has always been there for me when nobody else was.

  • Islah in peaceland says:

    that's what islam said 1400 years ago

  • Brian Super says:

    Simple but effective and something I will be trying tonight when get home….even if I have to experiment with our 3 furry babies initially…I'll report back back regardless so watch this space.tee! hee!

  • Savannah jimin says:

    I don't think Markiplier would answer

  • Preet Dhami says:

    Okay, this one got me! ?

  • Ashlee Mitchell says:

    Would anyone be able to show me a link to the original study? When I click on the graphic nothing happens. Also does anyone know what questions were on the happiness test they gave the participants?

  • Agnieszka Kozieł says:

    I instantly thought about my teacher, damn, I need to call him

  • Marcie Salkowski says:


  • Jignesh Dholka says:

    Hope Craig is doing better now.

  • Juan Roca says:

    I did not understand the experiment.

  • Rosa Lora says:

    “Trust me, I’m in a lab coat” ACTUALLY made me laugh. This was great, thank you.

  • Kelly Chen says:

    This made my day

  • Pau C says:

    2:04 how did her mother knew it was him from the very beginning??

  • Ada Jones fan says:


  • Marquis Jackson says:

    Who else saw this at school?

  • Ahahx X says:

    I’d write to kang Daniel and if u can help me call him, i will be so grateful

  • Peter Piper says:

    Gratitude doesn't come before happiness; gratitude comes AFTER the thing that makes you happy. And sometimes that thing that makes you happy is the SAME thing. Sometimes it comes from knowing that you are not going to starve to death. Sometimes it comes from knowing that you are not going to be living on the street. There are a number of things that make you happy when you THINK about them. But if you never THINK about them, you will not have gratitude for them… the things that have caused the gratitude.

  • sasha moll says:

    I cried 4:22 @lucyrose this is us. ..but u r younger…. ❤

  • Abufaza3_Gam3r says:

    Try when you help others in need( making them happier) and see how much the percentage will go

  • Monse says:

    I wish they would’ve shown more of the older gentlemen’s letter , his intro made me emotional

  • Rediscovering The Earth with Sara Hamza says:

    This video made me in tears.. Thank you so much for sharing the knowledge.
    I recently have been writing gratitude memos before I go to sleep and I have seen the impact they made! Wonderful science.

  • 538_Galaxy says:

    I was told to do the same in my high school English class last year. All of us were chicken to go up to the front of the class and call them on the spot except for this one guy. He called his first tutor, and it was touching as heck. Well, until the part in which the tutor ended the call cause she couldn't hear everything.
    I kinda wish to do it again, but more honestly and openly. I would have picked a different person. Someone emotionally, not physically closer.
    Honestly, maybe people should do this regularly. There is mutual appreciation, if nothing else, that comes out from this activity.

  • Amanda Lewis says:

    "outside of jesus christ". awe lol. what a guyyy

  • snowonder024 says:

    This is amazing!

  • Mojyo Bel says:

    watching this video made me more human ?❤❤

  • Bernard III Angga says:

    Subjects? I would call them participants if I were. If I were. Ive just been to my class and heard my teacher say we're not calling our subjects subjects but participants because they're not lab rats.
    But the video is really cute. I almost cried. Almost.

  • The Proud Asshole MGTOW says:

    This video just made me subscribe

  • zilan s says:

    wow this is so emotional I’m gonna do it to my aunt because really I wouldn’t be the person I am today if it wasn’t for her.

  • Leo Zendo says:

    18th birthday. The one possible substitution to anime.

  • Jenna Magoon says:

    This is like the try not to cry challenge

  • Raycie Layne says:

    Bawling my eyes out. Gosh, this is so amazing ❤❤❤❤❤

  • forachange says:

    Julian come back with more of these experiments!! Ccoooommmeee BBAaaacccckkk!!!!

  • Mel Boon says:

    Thank you so much, by you making this video, you have changed my life, I didn't realise how important gratitude was!

  • Joonmakesmeuwu says:

    Hopefully one day ill have friends that im grateful for, good things take time to come, ill keep waiting

  • Ella kozyarsky says:

    Jesus is who I would pick

  • Amber Fuller says:

    Thanks this is so helpful.

  • Emily Is lame says:

    I’m crying. I was thinking about my love and aaah I just have so much love in my heart for him. My eyes are sweating

  • amy cicchillo says:

    I was wondering if you had a child friendly version of this video. I love the message and would like to show it to my class?

  • سبحان الله وبحمده says:

    things is happiness only come from the inside , from your heart , the feeling of happiness and peacefulness is what most of us are missing , its why we are depressed

    its the reason why 11.5 million American adults with depression , on whom the U.S spends about $150 billion annually on direct medical costs

    so you may ask , what originate happiness ? its simple . but its something that you most likley have wrong information about , and it have been showed by media as if its the true evil of this world

    its islam , by following allah's orders and avoiding what he told us to avoid , your heart become pure over time and you will feel happinies when you worship him and when you read his book (holy quran ) and doing good deeds (helping the poor , being nice to everyone , forgive those who did bad to you no matter who and what they did , respecting people , and listening to your parents , etc )

    you might say that im lying because you find muslims depressed , and my answer to that is , its Because they dont do these they arent happy , genrallisim is BAD , saying that for example a country is bad because you found some people of that country doing many unlawful and horrbile things does NOT make the entire country horrible

    you see you might find christians or jews not doing what their religion tell them to do , or they would be doing horrbile things , does that mean their religion is horrible ? (while their religion isnt the religion people should follow , its up to them they decidied the wrong religion , when they go to hell they will wish they would come back so they become muslims . but their wish will never happen )

    the proofs that islam IS the true religion and that its what you Must be following and that you must be muslim is all over the internet and in the books , like here

    if you read them and discover that are they the truth but you are still arent muslim , its because you decided to not be a muslim not because its not true , not because you dont believe that allah is the one and only god and he is the only one that must be worshipped , its because YOU dont want to be a muslim , its because you dont want it maybe because of reasons (and no matter how many these reasons are , you are the one that will lose everything when the day of resseruction comes , when the believers of allah and muslims the ones who did good deeds enter eternal heaven , and the one who ignored , or rejected , or remained ignorant , enter eternal hell )

    think of it , why im wasting my time writing this if im lying or if this is bullshit ??? im doing this for allah first and for you , and so that you dont enter eternal hell , so hopefully allah guide you and you may start to think like 'what if this is true , and there is heaven and hell , and that islam is the only true religion and its the only way to enter heaven and avoid hell ' ,

    THIS life , isnt meant for enjoyment , im not saying dont enjoy , im just saying dont try too hard and end up finding that truly money dosent bring happinies , today i sold my ps4 even tho i love it , but because of the money and time i waste on it , i decide to sell it so that a portion of this money i can spend it on charity and doing good deeds so that ill find these good deeds in the after life as a reward from allah and to help the poor (although i prefered NOT to say this and keep it a secret (the charity), as im not doing this so people call me a 'good' person , im doing this for allah the mighty , and i hope it pleases him , im happy when is pleased with me , but i said it to show you to what level have islam changed my life

    its the orders of our creator , the one who is watching us ever since we were born , the one who created us to grant us his mercy (Except whom your Lord has given mercy, and for that He created them) from surah hud [@9] from holy Quran

    people are comparing ISIS and alqaeda and terrorisim to islam , which is one of the biggest problems , its like comparing heaven and hell , or like your most favorite food or piss , islam is Innocent of those devils

    or they might talk with no evidence backing them up about a 'flaw' in islam or the holy quran it self which is the words of allah the mighty him self , and the problem ? its that many people follow them without even thinking by them selves , when ever islam comes up , they say like 'why did the prophet peace be upon him marry 11 women if islam said you can only have up to 4 ' which the answer for in detail is found here @t , or other debates with literaly 0 INFO to back them up

    if you think islam isnt the religion of allah and its not what you should follow to enter heaven (other wise you would enter hell) then show me what YOU have to say to these evidence

    or tell me , how come the prophet know about things and facts that people 1400 years ago had no idea of and only now in our modern technology manage to discover , there is ALOT of these that prove that he is a prophet ,

    and answer me how did holy quran had in detail how people are born from semen turning into all the stages of human birth , 1400 years ago they had no knowledge of that and no way to tell

    and there is many more , the problem here isnt that islam cant prove it self that its the ultimate truth and that allah IS here and he is the one and only god and he is the one who created you and gave you all the good things you have , the problem is that PEOPLE them selve are ignoring or they just dont want to follow allah's (SWT) orders

    islam is also THE only religion that told us alot of details about heaven and hell , which makes sense because that is where you live your eternal life and thats the place where you spend your life on earth as a price for , so if you belived and became a muslim and did good deeds you enter heaven , if you werent a muslim , you didnt belive in allah and in islam , you didnt pray , you will still enter eternal hell

    want to learn more about islam ,

  • Roses are red says:


  • 4EverXLover says:

    Sad when I cant think of one person tht impacted my life or is a role model to me………

  • Cookie Monster says:

    Thank you!!!!!!!!!!!!!!….
    (now i feel better indeed)

  • Tauney Elysia says:

    I've been doing a gratitude challenge for 2 months. Write 3 things you are grateful for. Even if your upset. Everyday. Even small things. It has made me more aware of this short life and seriously more grateful than I have ever been. It takes less than 5 minutes and gives you more perspective. And made me around 70-80% better mood, wiser, it is awesome. And thank you ♡

  • Jack Shennan says:

    Also, gratitude to oneself. Find a mirror, smile at yourself until you think you're stupid, then thank that you for smiling at yourself. This process hacked for the solo flier.

  • Atiquah Quah says:

    Just because someone says I'm a doctor, or trust me or scientists have proven- it doesn't make it prove a point until there's evidence for it.

  • Dakota Moon says:

    This is the best part about Gratitude

  • Kirsten Allen says:

    Watching this made me happy

  • Sarah S says:

    I thought of a boy I was in class with. Then he said they should call this person… Well I would not be able to do it bc he's already dead..?

  • MemesOrSomething says:

    thank you Julian, very cool

  • Loria Raiola says:

    I loved that video #heartwarming

  • Ramon Davi says:

    It would be amazing to listen what the man would say to the accounting teacher.

  • Chaos Seeker says:

    Who else thinks that scientist looks like a human version of Wheatley from Portal 2?

  • Kristin Blomert says:

    I love this video….however because of the two cusses near the end….I can't show it to my students which makes me really sad….if they covered her mouth for both and not just the sound of one I would…. things to consider SoulPancake ! Great video.

  • Marquis de Hoto says:

    I hope they know how lucky they are to have that person still around!

  • em11111 says:

    I tried to click on the study and there is no link. Please provide the link!

  • cheristar says:

    I'm so thankful for my family.

  • Lori Walker says:

    IS there any chance there is a version of this video without the 2 curse words? I would like to show this to my students, but I need it to not have the curse words.

  • MeeshaKeena K says:

    It's great for adults. I wanted to share it in my classroom but they don't bleep out the word "ass" at 5:19 which is a shame =( It could be useful in grade level classrooms. If you remake this please let me know….. sorry it can't be on my list.

  • Gabriel Porras says:

    Which is the study? The CLICK HERE to read the study doesn't work.

  • nicole says:

    wow i love this channel

  • Hillary Bakulu says:


  • fish wale says:

    Thank you soul pancake you have be my beng each you for about 2 miners now and love you

  • studybug2010 says:

    2:05….she says hey sweetheart right after the she know it was him?

  • Johnny English, PhD says:

    So how did you record and analyse the biochemical activity of the brain's reward system?

  • Mica Ellis says:

    I truly enjoyed watching this video, and plan to share with my department. I think this would be a great exercise for us all! Thank you for sharing!

  • AustinDoggie says:

    I'll trust anyone in a lab coat

  • Ethan Josh Logronio says:

    i sucked someone's toe and they were really happy. from 2% to 100%

  • Inspired Life says:

    Gratitude is a key recipe for happiness. Find something simple everyday to be thankful for.

  • Brew Edits says:

    Who else’s teacher played this in class smh ?

  • Rosanna Polo says:

    One day I Tried to do this exercise on a workshop about happiness at work and nobody wanted to do it. Nobody wanted to make the call. It was very disappointed to me as relator. Could you recommend me a way to ask people do this without they feel uncomfortable?

  • Himal_ayas says:

    This made me happy :))

  • Nebuchadnezzar says:

    History's subject makes me the happiest person ever alive!

  • Nebuchadnezzar says:

    Can I like it thrice?

  • Jacob Heath says:

    'Hey Sweetheart' … wow so this was not staged at all…

  • 名誉 ために日本人天の祖先天 says:

    I am grateful that I am a kid

  • Deekshith Juvvadi says:

    Julian.. you're awesome buddy 🙂 This video is just too beautiful!

    Whenever I'm having a hard time starting my daily gratitude practice.. I watch this video.. and I have tears of joy every single time after watching it.. and it makes it easier to go ahead with my gratitude practice.. 🙂

    You guys are doing great! 🙂 Keep rocking! 🙂

  • Pati Carr says:

    Wow – tears are flowing. i dont know why but they are – I love to see people experience happiness i guess. Love this

  • Sober Jabel says:

    Makes me stop and think about who not what I am grateful for in my life. I find it easy to find gratitude in life when I am in a good mood but have a difficult time finding it when I am feeling frustrated or angry.

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