Happiness set point

…each of us tends to stay put in a particular long-term disposition; we appear to have a set point for personal happiness that is not easy to change. In fact, like other personality traits, personal happiness appears to be strongly influenced by our genes.

Consumerism is like air

Consumerism surrounds us like the air we breathe, and like air, it’s invisible. We hardly even know how much we are influenced by the philosophy that we must buy, buy, buy if we are to be happy.

Happiness is not a distant reward

The most competitive people, the ones with the competitive edge, don’t look to happiness as some distant reward for their achievements, nor grind through their days on neutral or negative; they are the ones who capitalize on the positive and reap the rewards at every turn.

Backwards Happiness Thinking

If you work hard, you will become successful, and once you become successful, then you’ll be happy. This pattern of belief explains what most often motivates us in life. We think: If I just get that raise, or hit that next sales target, I’ll be happy. If I can just get that next good grade, […]

Positive Emotion and High Performance

Positive emotion is a prerequisite for high performance. And only you are in charge of your enduring emotional experience. Remember the lesson from the last chapter: You can choose your feelings (the interpretations you have about the emotions that you sense), and the more you do that the more you rewire how you experience emotions. […]

Embrace Discomfort

You and I should embrace discomfort for at least three reasons, whether we deliberately choose to or it simply happens to us. First, comfort is overrated. It doesn’t lead to happiness. It often leads to self-absorption and discontent. Second, discomfort is a catalyst for growth. It makes us yearn for something more. It forces us […]

Responsibility for Problems and Happiness

We all love to take responsibility for success and happiness. Hell, we often fight over who gets to be responsible for success and happiness. But taking responsibility for problems is far more important, because that’s where real learning comes from. That’s where the real-life improvement comes from. To simply blame others is only to hurt […]

Happiness and Problem Solving

Happiness is a constant work-in-progress, because solving problems is a constant work-in-progress — the solution to today’s problems will lay the foundation for tomorrow’s problems, and so on. True happiness occurs only when you find the problems you enjoy having and solving.

Happiness Comes from Solving Problems

Happiness comes from solving problems. The keyword here is “solving.” If you’re avoiding your problems or feeling like you don’t have any problems, then you’re going to make yourself miserable.

Happiness and Success are not Identical

My second closing thought is about happiness. Success — whether measured by who wins the National Spelling Bee, makes it through West Point, or leads the division in annual sales — is not the only thing you care about. Surely, you also want to be happy. And while happiness and success are related, they’re not […]