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Happiness Study

Happiness Study – Happiness: The Science Behind Your Smile

Here, in one succinct but comprehensive book, is an excellent happiness study by Daniel Nettle.

“Happiness: the Science Behind Your Smile” uses the latest psychological studies to answer some questions which have been asked for centuries, plus some posed more recently. What is happiness, and what makes us happy or unhappy? Why are some people happier than others? Can we understand happiness scientifically? What happens in the minds of happy people? Can we manufacture drugs to make us happy? Will people become happier as societies
In answering these and other questions on the psychology of happiness, Nettle has succeeded in producing a gem. His book is at once scholarly, entertaining, pithy and readable.develop?

Research evidence supports the key points made by Nettle. It seems we have a good understanding of the things that make us happy, but many of us choose not to do them.

“People who work part-time, control their own lives, join community organisations, or get involved in active leisure are happier than those who do not. Yet the majority of people do not make these choices.”… “People who belong to community organizations, do voluntary work, and have rich social connections are healthier and happier than those who do not.”

Nettle explores why this is so, and offers some life-changing approaches to dealing with happiness and unhappiness.

“He concludes this pleasant, jargon-free book with some advice:

total happiness is not attainable, but you can manipulate your mind and life to reduce the impact of negative emotion, increase positive emotion and—most important—stop consciously seeking happiness at all.” (Amazon review)

This is an excellent happiness study in one book. It successfully delivers a wide range of insights into happiness, in an entertaining and manageable read.

Some Suggestions to Get the Most From This Book.

Nettle suggests that there are three levels to understanding happiness:

  • Level 1 is our momentary feeling, our sense of joy and pleasure.
  • Level 2 reflects our judgements about feeling, relating to our sense of well-being and satisfaction.
  • Level 3 is associated with quality of life, and conveys the idea of flourishing and fulfilling one’s potential.

Nettle argues that the more generally understood meaning of happiness relates to levels 1 and 2, and this is the focus of his book.

This is in contrast to Martin Seligman who published his own happiness study in: “Authentic Happiness”. In this landmark book, Seligman illustrates that happiness encompasses all three of Nettle’s levels, but he emphasises the importance of level 3. It’s worthwhile reading both books for a broader analysis of happiness theory.

Interested in other books on happiness, leadership and management?

Then look at our selection below, or click here for Books on Happiness and Management: the Happy Manager Bookshop. You’ll find many of the books on offer, with up to 30% discount off list price.

One final thought. Good-value management or self development doesn’t need to cost a fortune. If you want a new copy of our recommended books, just follow the links to Amazon and look for a bargain. Of course many charity shops also stock books like “Happiness”, so you may find an even better bargain there. Why not build up your professional library whilst contributing to some worthy causes?

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