Guide A Unified Approach to Achieving Fulfillment and Happiness

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Take an authentic journey with Dr. Andrea Polard on the path to true happiness. I have read this insightful, inspirational and life rewarding book and have come out the better and happier for it. Jun 21, Ian rated it liked it. I only managed to get half way through this - for some reason I just couldn't engage with it. That isn't to say that there aren't some nuggets of wisdom in it: Unfocused we live below capacity, without choice fulfilment.


Leaving our consciousness to its own devices saps vitality. Once I let go of becoming "everything", I could become "something" Looking at the way we think without judgement, brings us clarity I think she tried to cover all the bases, but it really wasn't a home run. I'm certain that many people with a different background and perspective from mine could gain from reading this book, but I'm cutting my losses and stopping at page of Apr 13, Christina Miskey rated it liked it.

It wasn't what I was expecting, and I wasn't a big fan. But I did find the concept interesting, and it may appeal more to others. Dec 24, Maria rated it it was ok Shelves: Daraus entsteht ein praktischer Leitfaden, der direkt auf das eigene Leben anwendbar ist. Ich hatte mir mit diesem Buch einen interessanten und lehrreichen Ratgeber von Dr. Apr 02, Scott Phipps rated it really liked it Shelves: Overall, this was a very insightful book with a significant amount of information and ideas regarding happiness.

Personally, it was very intriguing to learn about the Basic and Supreme Modes to life and happiness, and the struggles with balancing the two modes. I did find the Supreme Mode portion of the book slightly cumbersome to read and think about due to the heavily Eastern philosophy.

Oct 28, Jennifer Roth rated it liked it Shelves: I really didn't read the whole thing. I don't know about buddhism and often it seems like riddles to me. I jumped around through the book. Parts of the book were noteworthy enough to make me take photos of the pages with my phone though. Jan 30, Mollyritterbeck rated it liked it. I like how at the end of each chapter it gives you things to think about and ponder - how to really put some practical steps to use! The first section of the book challenges you to make an honest assessment of your life through a unique systematic approach while the second section of the book addresses societal issues, building on this construct.

This approach provides a framework for evaluating the relative state of well being of individuals and societies alike. It is possible to more clearly discern those factors that are under our control, and those factors that we can do little about. With this understanding, our energies can be directed towards the most beneficial endeavors.

Evaluating Quality of Life: You are invited to read the following synopsis of the two books to gain a sense of what they're all about. In this self-help guidebook, a unique conceptual framework is provided that enables the reader to increase awareness and progress toward realizing his or her personal aspirations, ultimately enhancing the quality of life. While sharing ideas formulated during extensive discussions with Dr.

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Margie Skeer, an expert in social sciences, Dr. Lyubomirsky shares in plain English no New Age speak or Tony Robbins pep talks what we know about happiness, and how other people are achieving it. Then she lays out twelve simple happiness activities that scientific research has shown to be effective in improving happiness.

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A simple You need this book. A simple exercise helps you determine the one or two activities that are most likely to be successful. Yes, the tone is stripped down almost clinical and can be repetitive, but I found that refreshing. This is interesting, because people spend most of their time obsessing over their current life circumstances - assuming a change will bring happiness - but they quickly become conditioned to them and go back to the baseline.

A more effective way to change one's happiness is to change the way one sees the world. There are a handful of brief, simple activities you can do to dramatically improve your happiness. The key is to select the ones that you feel naturally interested in, not the ones you feel pressured or guilted into doing. I decided to start hitting the gym a few times a week and spend a few minutes at a time envisioning the kind of life I want a year from now.

The How of Happiness: A Scientific Approach to Getting the Life You Want by Sonja Lyubomirsky

Both of these have helped me tremendously, but your list will probably be different. The author closes with some interesting findings on depression. Certain people are genetically predisposed to depression, but the gene doesn't turn on until it is triggered by trauma - often in youth. If you can learn coping skills at a young age, you may be able to prevent depression, but for the large number of us who aren't so fortunate, the coping mechanisms can help. Oct 29, Eva added it. They are comfortable expressing gratitude for all they have.

They are often the first to offer helping hands to coworkers and passersby. They practice optimism when imagining their futures. They make Notes from Kindle: They make physical exercise a weekly and even daily habit. They are deeply committed to lifelong goals and ambitions e. Expressing Gratitude Interestingly, this effect was observed only for those who expressed gratitude every Sunday night. Can anything good come from it?

Does it present any opportunities for me? What lessons can I learn and apply to the future? Did I develop any strengths as a result? A for adversity, B for belief, C for consequence, D for disputation, and E for energize. Increasing Flow Experiences Savor and reminisce Create a savoring album.

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  • Feb 06, Jessica rated it liked it. The scientific approach to happiness is getting a lot of grant funding and media exposure lately, and this is the latest offering. As with most self-help books because that's what this is, scientific or not , it could have been a fraction of the length and still gotten the point across.

    I began resenting the author's insistence on the "science" behind her strategies because let's face it, we've been instructed to exercise and eat right for quite some time. However, for some people, maybe seeing The scientific approach to happiness is getting a lot of grant funding and media exposure lately, and this is the latest offering. However, for some people, maybe seeing the actual "proof" that these habits can concretely help people achieve happiness will be extra kick in the pants they need.

    And its true that her 12 prescriptions, including the aforemntioned under "take care of your body," are quite likely the recipe needed to overcome malaise and get focused on what matters to you personally. I especially gravitated to the chapters on gratitude, building social relationships, and clarifying your goals, and less so to the chapters on forgiveness and "coping" skills. Not to worry, Lyubomirsky notes you need only find a few of these activities that work for you individually to launch yourself into the path of happiness.

    And she thoughtfully provides a self-diagnostic tool. Aug 03, Mohammad Ali Abedi rated it did not like it. The scientific angle is merely a ploy to make it more legitimate. Usually, the studies are never explained or mentioned, and if they are mentioned, there is a only a brief explanation of how it was conducted. Scientific research is usually only interesting to me if the study proves something which seem to be contrary to current common sense belief. Everyone knows all that. Oct 09, Intplibrarian rated it did not like it Shelves: I followed the Nancy Pearl rule, though not intentionally.

    It was near page 50 that I decided this book was, well, ridiculous. No discussion of how that might in itself be relative? That and the author's declaration, as thought it would be true of all people, that cuddling one's own child is the epitome of happiness. Uhm, I'm pretty sure those parents out there that didn't want to be parents wouldn't ALL agree with that. I do believe that one can do things to change o I followed the Nancy Pearl rule, though not intentionally.

    I do believe that one can do things to change one's own level of happiness. This book, though, presents scientific studies the way that a lot of the popular media does I have the urge to pick apart lots of stuff that I read in those first 50 pages, but it's not really necessary. If anyone who's reading this review disagrees, though, I'd love to discuss it.

    What makes a good life? Lessons from the longest study on happiness

    View all 3 comments. Oct 27, J rated it it was amazing. This was a great good detailing academic research on what makes people happy in a lasting way. Interestingly, a lot of the research coincides with religious teaching - not just Christian, but Jewish, Buddhist, Hindu, etc. What makes this different from just a simplified reduction of academic research in a fairly easy to ready format is that it contains exercises to become more happy. It's these activities that the author a psychologist at UC Riverside focuses on, giving easy to follow examples to put into exercise in your own life.

    Nov 01, Holly rated it really liked it Shelves: I already consider myself a happy person, so I went into this book after seeing the researcher give a presentation assuming that it would give me a smug sense of satisfaction that I was already doing everything right. I wasn't totally wrong, but it still was a delightful and illuminating read. Having benchmarks of happiness levels is sort of strange, but also completely reassuring given how much power it turns out we have over our own happiness. Jun 01, Heidi Kyhl rated it liked it. This is a very useful book. The author has a scientific approach to therapeutical ways of changing your life.

    It is easy to read and has many good easy to use ways of helping you. I especially like the chapter on rumination which has helped me a lot. Jul 12, Christina rated it really liked it. This is a great handbook for positive thinking based on real life studies. She helps you figure out what little things you can do and narrows it down to help you find the ones you WILL do so that you can actually stick with it!

    Jan 08, Ellee rated it liked it. Only made it half way through the book. While interesting, nothing stood out as a new fact or idea, all seemed to be common sense. Sep 13, Stacy rated it really liked it. This book gives concrete, scientifically proven ways to increase your happiness no matter your current happiness level. I'm finding it very interesting thus far.

    Aug 21, Alfred Baudisch rated it it was amazing Shelves: This is definitely not a self help book. It is indeed based on science and a lot of research. Almost every paragraph in this book has a linked research or study. There are math and spreadsheets for happiness. With everything I learned from it in hand, I decided to compare with my activities and future plans.

    The How of Happiness: A Scientific Approach to Getting the Life You Want

    From everything that I put down on paper and onto the spreadsheets, the most critical part is that it helped me visualize that games are completely bad for my mental health, while everything This is definitely not a self help book. From everything that I put down on paper and onto the spreadsheets, the most critical part is that it helped me visualize that games are completely bad for my mental health, while everything else that I do is still the correct path for me and my well being.

    Following the exercises and spreadsheets suggested in this book, I could visualize that games go against everything else that actually make me feel good and against my future plans. Not just because I wasn't able to play fully, but because when I play I always feel guilty of something. The few game sessions I had in the past few years, always left me in bad mood, depressed for some hours and guilty. Also even small sessions and the future plan that I had of going on a years vacation just to play games, block my path for plans and activities that make more sense for me and that are more fulfilling in both present and future.

    Of course this is not all, but just a part of how it helped me.

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    I changed a lot of small issues on a daily basis, loaded with the mathematical knowledge from this book. My wife gave me this book as a gift, and I accepted and read it with a really open mind and I am glad that I did it. I'm completely skeptical of cliche phrases and self help around happiness, and this book is the opposite of those. This one is indeed based on science, with real numbers and math. Feb 18, Mandy Yard rated it it was amazing Shelves: It is much less cliche and preachy than a lot of self help books and uses scientific data to back up simple and manageable steps to increase life enjoyment.

    I found it extremely interesting how such a large portion of your life's satisfaction is based on genetics but there is also a very large percentage that you can control based on your behaviors. If you are unhappy in your job that unhappiness can prompt you to pursue one that is a better fit though of course there are constraints to this depending on your life and needs.

    If you want to have a relationship there has to be a bit of unhappiness being single to motivate you to go out and meet people and go on dates. Though the book DOES explain it is important to savor and continuously appreciate these things once you get them which I can see is important. The tactics given are pretty simple and nothing we don't already know- exercise, meditation, goal setting, savoring the moment, social connections, etc. No matter how much time you have or where you're at in your life there is something you can do that is PROVEN to increase happiness.

    I think this is crucial. The book has an in-depth chapter on medications realizing that many readers of this book might either be on or want to be on medications for depression, anxiety, etc. I think this book is a great "back to the basics" approach and by laying out the importance and attainability of all of its strategies can be really inspiring to readers. Oct 24, Maya Smart rated it really liked it. If you only read one happiness book, let this be the one.

    Happiness, as she defines it, is no shallow pursuit. Happy people are more energetic, sociable, charitable and healthy. They live longer, work smarter and lead better. Major depression is the leading cause of disability for to year-olds in this country, according to the CDC. And Lyubormirsky compiles extensive research to show that increasing feelings of well-being is within our grasp.

    Intentional daily activity—happiness work, if you will—can make a difference. They pursue new understandings, seek new achievements, and control their thoughts and feelings. It offers powerful assessment tools: Together, they help readers assess their current happiness level and fashion individualized happiness programs. Thus equipped, committed glee seekers can animate the science and create their own personal stories of joyful living. This customization is key. While most self-help books throw out a slew of one-size-fits-all suggestions, Lyubomirsky cites research revealing that individuals benefit from some strategies more than others based on their own unique needs, interests, values, resources and inclinations.

    The raise, the bigger house, the new car quickly become a new normal and no longer boost happiness. Happiness, I learned, is like everything else in life built on selectivity. Choose carefully, and then give your all to what you choose. But the book stands out for its systematic process to select which will work for you, explanation of why they work and nitty gritty descriptions of exactly how and how often to implement the practices.

    For example, she explains that expressing gratitude boosts happiness by promoting the savoring of positive life experiences, building self-worth and self-esteem, helping people cope with stress, encouraging moral behavior, building social bonds and more. Then she offers several ideas for practicing gratitude and urges readers who resonate with the practice to select just one — say, writing in a gratitude journal — and then vary how they implement it.

    So, rather than journaling daily about what you are grateful for, which could become a chore and minimize the benefits, she suggests expressing gratitude after particular triggers, such as enduring a hardship.