Our most commonly held formula for success is broken.
Conventional wisdom holds that if we work hard we will be more successful, and if we are more successful, then we’ll be happy. If we can just find that great job, win that next promotion, lose those five pounds, happiness will follow. But recent discoveries in the field of positive psychology have shown that this formula is actually backward: Happiness fuels success, not the other way around.
When we are positive, our brains become more engaged, creative, motivated, energetic, resilient, and productive at work. This isn’t just an empty mantra. This discovery has been repeatedly borne out by rigorous research in psychology and neuroscience, management studies, and the bottom lines of organizations around the globe.
In The Happiness Advantage, Shawn Achor, who spent over a decade living, researching, and lecturing at Harvard University, draws on his own research—including one of the largest studies of happiness and potential at Harvard and others at companies like UBS and KPMG—to fix this broken formula. Using stories and case studies from his work with thousands of Fortune 500 executives in 42 countries, Achor explains how we can reprogram our brains to become more positive in order to gain a competitive edge at work.
Isolating seven practical, actionable principles that have been tried and tested everywhere from classrooms to boardrooms, stretching from Argentina to Zimbabwe, he shows us how we can capitalize on the Happiness Advantage to improve our performance and maximize our potential. Among the principles he outlines:
• The Tetris Effect: how to retrain our brains to spot patterns of possibility, so we can see—and seize—opportunities wherever we look.
• The Zorro Circle: how to channel our efforts on small, manageable goals, to gain the leverage to gradually conquer bigger and bigger ones.
• Social Investment: how to reap the dividends of investing in one of the greatest predictors of success and happiness—our social support network
A must-read for everyone trying to excel in a world of increasing workloads, stress, and negativity, The Happiness Advantage isn’t only about how to become happier at work. It’s about how to reap the benefits of a happier and more positive mind-set to achieve the extraordinary in our work and in our lives.
APPLE BOOKS REVIEW
What if the common idea that success leads to happiness is entirely backward? Harvard lecturer Shawn Achor reviews decades of research on positive psychology—much of it his own—in The Happiness Advantage. His upbeat narration explores how positive thinking can be a key to being more productive and engaged with the people around us, which makes us work harder and become more successful. Rather than treating happiness as a feeling that can be flipped on like a light switch, Achor provides practical tips and exercises that teach us how to search for positive patterns of thought, view our failures as stepping stones to eventual success, and break big problems into smaller, achievable goals. Retraining our brains toward positivity won’t make us happier overnight, but it does remind us that we’re the gatekeepers of our own mindset.
Customer ReviewsSee All
You need friends.
It really explain you really need people. To be happy.
I have read this book twice and am perusing for the third time. I didn't listen to the audio version. The above one star reviewer was way off base. It was very easy to understand and very relatable. It was very motivating for me and has already made a difference in my attitude. I felt like the stories and examples were entertaining. Absolutely lived it.
Excellent! Get a copy for those unhappy people in your life!
Well presented, well researched. Convincing. And most importantly, it is consistent with reality and experience.
It was also pretty cool that the author read his own book.
Get a copy for your unhappy friends and unhappy family members. They will thank you.