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Money really doesnt buy happiness

HAPPINESS, not money, is now viewed as the greatest measure of success by Australians.

A new survey has concluded Australians regard wellbeing and happiness as the yardsticks for success, not financial security.

And a big reason for this is Australias extended period of economic growth. Laura Demasi, research director at Ipsos, which conducted the survey for National Australia Bank, said Australias long run of prosperity meant people could look past traditional material aspirations and focus on emotional goals.

I would argue that were in an the era of post-material values and this data, this research really supports that, Ms Demasi told AAP. Were asking them to define success and its really interesting because it seems like happiness and success have become interchangeable, theyre kind of viewed as the same thing.

The survey questioned more than 2000 people aged between 16 and 70. Close to 60 per cent of those surveyed ranked being happy in their top seven markers of success, followed by good family relationships, feeling healthy and being a good person.

While those values transcended generations, Ms Demasi said they were amplified in those surveyed in Generation Z, aged 16 to 21.

All the stuff we see with everyone else just peaks with them, they have the steroid version, she said. They might be the generation where it changes but theyre still very young.

NAB chief customer officer Andrew Hagger said he believed it was time to change the definition of success in Australia. It is clear that Australians are rethinking success that they want to live a life that is shaped by the happy relationships they have with their family and friends, by the way they look after themselves physically and mentally, and by being a good person, Mr Hagger said.

The bank has used the research to inform a new white paper, titled Rethink Success.

The research also highlighted a disconnect between how people personally define success and how they think society defines it. While subjects personally rated happiness above money, they still believed society views a good paying job and being rich as the definition of success.

The products disappearing from shelves

YOGO, Chupa Chups and Gravox are rapidly falling out of fashion with Aussie shoppers.

Sales data from market research firm Euromonitor reveals changing consumer habits are taking their toll on certain items many of which may not have long left on supermarket shelves.

For example, bar soap sales have declined 18 per cent over the last five years, from $133.6 million in 2010 to $109.7 million in 2015, according to Euromonitor.

A recent survey found just 15 per cent of Australians aged 18-24 used bar soap in the previous month, compared with 30 per cent who used body wash or shower gel. According to a US survey, more than half of young Americans thought bar soap would be covered in germs.

And despite a surge in popularity which saw lollipop sales surge to $37 million in 2013, sales had plummeted by 17 per cent to $30.6 million two years later.

iMasterChef/i-loving gravy snobs could be partly responsible for the fall of gravy cubes and powders, sales of which declined 20 per cent since 2010 to $41 million. After all, how hard is it to deglaze a pan?

And shocking as it may seem, people just arent perming their hair as much as they used to. Sales of perms and relaxants, always a niche market, have plummeted by one third to $200,000 in the same period.

Melbourne University online consumer psychologist Dr Brent Coker said millennials were just the latest generation whose change in behaviour and preferences were sending once-popular items out of business.

A lot of these products just arent necessary anymore, Dr Coker told the i Herald Sun/i last month. For example, younger people might not like using serviettes because they dont like sitting down at the dinner table. Its not a formal ritual anymore. It is grab food, have it on your lap and watch Netflix on your iPad.

Another product headed for the scrap heap seems to be the battery toothbrush the crippled cousin of the electric toothbrush which saw sales decline 40 per cent from $53.1 million to $31.9 million between 2010 and 2015. In the same period, electric toothbrush sales increased 29 per cent to $37.8 million.

Deodorant cream, another niche item, apparently some sort of cross between a moisturiser and a roll-on deodorant, also seems doomed. Sales plummeted 58 per cent between 2010 and 2014 to $500,000, and Euromonitor recorded no data in 2015.

And despite almost 3.2 million Australians eating the likes of a Dairy Farmers Custard, Yoplait, YoGo or Fruche every month, sales of dairy desserts have fallen by 15 per cent since 2010, from $285.1 million to $243.4 million.

Sales of chilled noodles such as Japanese soba have halved in the same period, from $22 million to $10.9 million, while fromage frais and quark sales fell 13 per cent to $72.6 million.

It comes after Procter & Gamble warned that sales of its once-popular Downy fabric softener had fallen 26 per cent since 2007 due to millennials who simply dont know what the product is for.

P&G doesnt sell fabric softener in Australia, where the top two selling brands are Cuddly and Fluffy, both made by Colgate-Palmolive. Euromonitor data shows Aussies still love their fabric softener, with sales increasing 22 per cent since 2010 to $111.4 million.

In November, a leaked memo from McDonalds revealed internal alarm that only one in five millennials had ever tasted a Big Mac. Michael James Delligatti, the creator of the iconic burger, passed away shortly after.