Is there a secret to maintaining a happy, healthy and long life? Although the answer for most people may be no, Harvard researchers seem to have a solution to this question: positive relationships.

(Also read: What is the formula for happiness, according to a Harvard study?).

After collecting health records of more than 700 people since 1938, specialists noticed that happiness, in most cases, was not linked to money, professional success or healthy habits. Positive human relationships were, in the end, the key to happiness and productivity.

The results were not limited to the personal field, but expanded to the work sphere. For Robert Waldinger, MD, professor of psychiatry at Harvard Medical School and director of the Harvard Adult Development Study, the more connected people are with others in their jobs, the greater the chances they will feel fulfilled and happy. .

“It’s a critical social need that must be met in all aspects of our lives,” Waldinger explains to ‘CNBC Make It’.

What are the jobs that generate the most unhappiness?

The investigation then revealed that the jobs that generate the most unhappiness are those that require the least human interaction.. That is, those that imply greater isolation, independent work and night shifts.

Such is the case of people who are engaged in truck driving, night security, online retail, or package and food delivery. They all have one thing in common: Lacking co-workers, their chances of building meaningful relationships are slim.

(Keep reading: Talking to strangers can make us happier, and here’s how.)

The jobs that require the least human interaction are the ones that generate the most unhappiness.

While this is generally the trend in the workplace, You cannot ignore those who, even when surrounded by co-workers, feel isolated, disconnected and unhappy.

For the Harvard psychiatry professor, there is no clearer example than those who work in customer service. In dialogue with the aforementioned television channel, he said: “We know that people in call centers are often greatly stressed by their jobs, mainly because they are on the phone all day with frustrated and impatient people.”

(Of interest: This is the key to having ‘a good life’ and being happy, according to Harvard).

Feeling unhappy at work, in addition to affecting individuals psychologically and emotionally, can also lead to physical complications. According to specialists, the feeling of disconnection can “increase the risk of death to a degree similar to smoking, obesity and physical inactivity.”

Hence, it is essential to create meaningful relationships in the work environment. How can you do it? Spending even five minutes of your day with a co-worker or finding someone with similar interests to do stress-reducing activities with. A sports tournament or book club are the options the researchers recommend.

Building relationships with colleagues will also depend on the stance the boss takes. It is different when the superior allows the workers to talk, laugh and share, than when he expects the opposite, that the person immerses himself completely and in an extended time in his work obligations.

Building meaningful bonds with coworkers can reduce dissatisfaction.

In short, for Waldinger, “positive relationships at work lead to lower levels of stress, healthier workers, and fewer days we come home upset.”

A study prepared by Gallup, in fact, suggests that having a best friend in the workplace can bring benefits in communication, commitment and organizational productivity. Along these lines, the company urges company leaders to foster meaningful relationships between colleagues.

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