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Happiness: Unlocking the Mysteries of Psychological Wealth Hardcover – September 9, 2008
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“Happiness challenges the present thinking of the causes and consequences of happiness and redefines our modern notions of happiness. It shares the results of three decades of research on happiness, and covers the most important advances in our understanding of happiness.” (Adolescence, April 2009)
“Happiness is a process, not a place. That's one of the key concepts that leaps from Happiness: Unlocking The Mysteries Of Psychological Wealth by Ed Diener and Robert Biswas- Diener.” (Diana's Blog: Quirky Words and Book)
“Happiness challenges the present thinking af the causes and consequences of happiness and redefines our modern notions of happiness. It shares the results of three decades of research on happiness, and covers the most important advances in our understanding of happiness. It also offers readers access to the world's leading experts on happiness, and provides 'real world' examples that will resonate with general readers as well as scholars.” (Family Therapy)
“In their sweeping new book Diener and his son, Robert Biswas-Diener, distill the results of worldwide research into happiness and come up with an explanation, a recipe, for a sustained state of good feeling, psychological wealth, as they call it.” (Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, November 2008)
“The authors write in a that is clear and accessible to a general audience; furthermore, they frequently infuse humor into their work. I certainly respect Diener and Biswas-Diener as well as admire the amount effort they have each put into their life's work.” (Metapsychology, November 2008)
"Pioneering researchers Professor Ed and his son Robert Biswas-Diener explain ... why most things we've been told are wrong." (Psychologies, November 2008)
“Ed Diener [says], 'Happiness is not a set of desirable life circumstances. It's a way of traveling.' Diener's new book, written with his son, Robert Biswas-Diener, a life coach, offers guidance for those interested in taking a road trip. As the Dieners synthesize the latest research … they challenge the conventional party line on well-being.” (O Magazine)
"Among the recent glut of books about happiness, this one shines out. Highly readable and entertaining, its authors are perhaps the pre-eminent researchers on the subject … The advice on how to gain an appropriate level of happiness is way ahead of that offered by most self-help books." (New Scientist)
“If you’re looking for one thoughtful, comprehensive book to help you understand the science of happiness better, this is exactly what you’re looking for. It’s also a good read, accessible, concise, and even funny, which isn’t true of all such books, and there’s a lot of information I hadn’t seen elsewhere.” (Happiness Project)
"This book is absolutely a delight to read. [The authors] have made the science very accessible and practical. You will love the stories they weave into the text. The Dieners take us along on their adventures around the world. We tag along as they unlock the mysteries of happiness. As you read the book you come to understand why Diener is known as the ‘Jedi Master of Happiness’ and why Biswas-Diener has been called the ‘Indiana Jones of Psychology.’ Get the book, settle into a comfortable chair, buckle your seatbelt, and enjoy the ride." (Positive Psychology News Daily)
"This is the most authoritative and informative book about happiness ever written. That’s not surprising, given that its authors are the world’s leading happiness researcher and his psychologist-son, whose vocation is coaching people toward happier lives."
–David G. Myers, Hope College, author, The Pursuit of Happiness: Who is Happy, and Why
"A great gift from the leading professional scientist of happiness in the world and his son, the 'Indiana Jones' of positive psychology."
–Martin E. P. Seligman, University of Pennsylvania and author, Authentic Happiness
"Want the key to happiness and success in life, choose the right advisor. On the subject of happiness, students, researchers, businesses, and governments have been turning to Ed Diener. Now, in this powerful, ground-breaking book, we have the opportunity to receive the coveted advice of Dr. Diener and his son Robert Biswas-Diener. This book is a must read if you want a practical, enjoyable, and uplifting science-based guide to achieving real psychological wealth."
–David J. Pollay, B.A. Yale, M.A.P.P. University of Pennsylvania, President, The Momentum Project, Syndicated Columnist, and Author of The Law of the Garbage Truck
"The collaboration between the foremost authority on happiness research and the “Indiana Jones” of psychology makes for a great mix of interesting examples and solid research. I have never seen a book that does such a good job offering useful practical advice while basing this advice on completely sound empirical research."
–Richard E. Lucas, Michigan State University
"This is a happiness book by the world authority, the pre-eminent scholar in the field along with an in-the-trenches coach who teaches and adapts this material every day for practical use with his clients. These folks know happiness from the inside out. The authors separate the wheat from the chaff, and serve up a meal replete with tasty morsels of practical advice on how to live. A joy to read!"
–Michael B. Frisch, Baylor University, author, Quality of Life Therapy
"Finally the definitive book on happiness from the world’s leading expert, Ed Diener, and his son, Robert Biswas-Diener, known as the “Indiana Jones” of Positive Psychology. The authors bring over thirty years of research and practice into this engaging book that reveals the secrets of psychological wealth – your true net work -- which includes your attitudes toward life, social support, spiritual development, material resources, and health. This is a landmark book that should be read not only by laypersons but also scholars, educators, business leaders and decision-makers interested in global well-being and human happiness. "
–Jim Clifton, Chairman & CEO, The Gallup Organization
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“The former justice of the US Supreme Court Benjamin Cordozo expressed this well: “In the end the great truth will have been learned: that the quest is greater than what is sought, the effort finer than the prize (or, rather, that the effort *is* the prize), the victory cheap and hollow were it not for the rigor of the game.”
~ Ed Diener & Robert Biswas-Diener from Happiness
Ed Diener is the world’s leading researcher on the science of happiness and his son, Robert Biswas-Diener is know as the “Indiana Jones of psychology” because of his data collection adventures around the world. (Love that. :)
Together, they present a detailed and rigorous look at the science of happiness in their great book, Happiness.
Although the book is packed with practical wisdom and far from a textbook, it’s less warm and fuzzy than some of the other titles we cover as they explore the nuances of the sophisticated research into what makes us truly happy. If you enjoy the Note I think you’ll dig the book!
Let’s take a quick look at some of my favorite Big Ideas:
1. Psychological Wealth - Become a billionaire!
2. Giving Support - vs. Receiving support.
3. Affect Balance - How’s yours?
4. Loving & Caring Angels - We all need them!
5. Money - & It's subtle effects.
That’s a REALLY quick look at a great book *packed* with scientific wisdom on how we can live with more happiness and develop psychological wealth. Hope you enjoyed and here’s to becoming billionaires in what matters most! :)
More goodness— including PhilosophersNotes on 300+ books in our *OPTIMIZE* membership program. Find out more at brianjohnson . me.
Have you lost your happiness? Did you feel happy for months at a time and then feel completely depressed? I have always been a fairly happy person but I've also encountered debilitating depression. So I know the difference between the two extremes. I've also figured out what makes me unhappy and what makes me the happiest I've ever been. Being loved unconditionally is the happiest feeling for me.
I'm sure you have studied your life in a similar way. Perhaps when people are overly critical of you, you feel angry and that turns into depression. Or maybe like me this year, you remembered everyone on Feb 14 and no one sent you a card. I admit that I never really tried to remember "everyone" before so it was probably a surprise to most people when they got a card from me. Being forgotten can however be a little unnerving especially when the people I remembered do a good job of saying they love me at other times of the year.
But the real question is: "Will reading THIS book make you happy?" To be honest, there is a lot of analysis of pertinent data. There is however somewhat of a lack of practical suggestions that you might expect at the end of each chapter. Instead there is a summary of the points or at least a paragraph or two about conclusions reached after the analysis is presented. At the end of the book there is another section that summarizes the entire book.
Do you wish you felt less anger, sadness, guilt, fear, anxiety or jealousy? The authors of "Happiness" say that these feelings are normal even if you are a happy person. They claim they have a purpose. I personally feel that most people would rather be rid of them so they can feel the freedom of happiness. And yet, maybe we would all become bored if our life was too easy or happiness wasn't so elusive. The authors of this book claim that most people in the world are "mildly" happy. They also seriously caution against being hyper happy or euphoric. Apparently that has some dangers of its own that could cause you an earlier death.
If you think money can't bring you happiness then you may be surprised by some of the excellent research revealed in "Happiness." I had always thought that people in poor countries were actually happier but that has been disproved by the authors.
So should you buy yourself a pair of rose-colored glasses (as I did a few days ago) and think yourself into a state of happiness or is there some practical suggestion that will lead you to a much more pleasing life? Some of the ideas given in this book might help if you are willing to write down goals, improve intimate relationships, work on your spirituality and focus on wise choices.
Ed Diener and Robert Biswas-Diener believe that real wealth is being happy so it is a very worthy goal. Together they have written a pleasantly creative work with a few moments of humor. They encourage the reader to try to feel love, compassion and gratitude. And if you still can't get happy they suggest you change your attitude slightly.
Well since happier people have stronger immune systems and depressed people are more likely to have a heart attack, this book may save your life. Of all the books I've recently read on happiness, I think I like this one the best.
~The Rebecca Review
A life full of love--with others, friends and colleagues; with work, being engaged in what you love to do every day; and, with experiences, activities, and life in general.
Happiness: Unlocking the Mysteries of Psychological Wealth by Ed Diener and Robert Biswas-Diener (Blackwell, 2008). Reviewed by Steve Gladis, Ph.D., July 2012 on Survival Leadership blog.