10/01/2011 05:44 GMT | Updated 22/05/2015 06:12 BST

Jobs - Not High Salaries - Are Key To Happiness

Having a job not a high salary is essential for happiness Getting to work during rush hour may not be such a happy experience. Photo: Flickr, fabbio

Prime Minister David Cameron famously claimed he wants to know what makes us happy. And the first official survey to uncover the truth about happiness in Britain since Mr Cameron became the leader of the government suggests job security, personal health and family relationships are the most important things where our wellbeing is concerned. And when it comes to work, having a job is more important than being paid a top salary.

It's hardly surprising, given the number of people who may face losing their jobs in the coming year, owing to the government's spending cuts. After all, what good is a high salary if you're not going to have a job for very long?

The survey, which was carried out by the Office for National Statistics (ONS), looked at completed questionnaires provided by more than 2,000 people. Having a job was rated more important than having a high salary, while nine out of ten of those quizzed claimed job security, good health and being with family made them most content.

But that's not all. Many other respondents cited religious and spiritual beliefs and living in a free society as the things that made them happy, while many of those who had children claimed the knowledge that their kids would have a good life and a nice place to live was necessary for their wellbeing too.

It's all food for thought for Mr Cameron and his government. Future surveys, however, will hopefully ask people what makes them unhappy too - crime, unemployment and ill health, for instance.

If David Cameron were to ask you what makes you happy, what would you tell him?

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