Here is a snippet of an interview with Robert Biswas-Diener author of, Happiness: Unlocking the Mysteries of Psychological Wealth, from the Worcester Telegram & Gazette:
What do happy people tend to have that less-happy people don’t?
Robert Biswas-Diener: They tend to have very high-quality, trusting and intimate close social relationships. People they can count on for support in times of need, people they can share their successes with, people that they can just have fun and enjoy hobbies and recreation with. And the least-happy people are far less likely to have these types of tight social networks and close relationships.
Interviewer: But are people happy because they have friends — or do they have friends because they’re happy?
R.B.: And the short answer is both. When you put people in a good mood, they become more attractive to others. Others like to seek out and interact with people who are in a good mood. So if you’re happy, that happiness is actually going to lead you to have more friends. And just the reverse is true as well. If you have good, high-quality social relationships (even if you don’t have many of them) that sense of social security will help lead you to be more happy.