The Happiness Advantage: How a Positive Brain Fuels Success in Work and Life

The Happiness Advantage: How a Positive Brain Fuels Success in Work and Life

by Shawn Achor


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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.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780307591555
Publisher: The Crown Publishing Group
Publication date: 06/05/2018
Pages: 256
Sales rank: 7,005
Product dimensions: 5.10(w) x 7.80(h) x 0.70(d)

About the Author

Shawn Achor is one of the world’s leading experts on happiness, success, and potential. His research has graced the cover of Harvard Business Review, and his TED Talk is one of the most popular of all time, with more than 15 million views. Shawn spent twelve years at Harvard before bringing this research to nearly half the Fortune 100, as well as places like the Pentagon, impoverished schools in Africa, and the White House. His research has also been published in top psychology journals and featured in the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, Forbes, and Fortune. His interview with Oprah Winfrey and his PBS program have been seen by millions. He now serves on the World Happiness Council and continues his research.

Read an Excerpt

I applied to Harvard on a dare.

Excerpted from "The Happiness Advantage"
by .
Copyright © 2018 Shawn Achor.
Excerpted by permission of The Crown Publishing Group.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

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The Happiness Advantage: The Seven Principles of Positive Psychology That Fuel Success and Performance at Work 4.1 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 45 reviews.
EnergyCoach More than 1 year ago
We all like being happy, but most of us don't realize how much we actually need to be happy. It's easy to continue to move ourselves down to the bottom of the priority list in order to take care of all the other things that matter in our lives. And yet as we continue to push our own health and happiness to the side, our performance, not to mention our sanity, often becomes an afterthought. The Happiness Advantage builds a solid case that how we take care of ourselves significantly impacts our business. It is clearly the responsibility of anyone who wants to perform at high levels to pay attention to the benefits that come to them when they not only chose to be happy, but they make "happiness a work ethic". Thank you Shawn for bringing this information to us in a way that is easy to understand and apply to our daily routine. This is truly a fun, informative and life inspiring message.
c_dubb23 More than 1 year ago
I loved this book. It was easy to follow and it made alot of sense. It was helped my looking at everything at a new outlook. High recommended!
DrakeBullet More than 1 year ago
It has feel-good psychology, but also good practices to follow. It has helped me reshape my outlook and expectations. For example, I have been writing 3 things for which I grateful each day for 4 months. It is a habit that is working. (Read some books on the brain and this book's concepts really hit home.)
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is one of the best books I have ever read! Shawn's uncanny ability to tell a story while teaching this unique "advantage" is amazing and true gift. I could not put this book down!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Loved this book
Yogjen More than 1 year ago
Loved this book. Great studies, statistics, and easy to impliment tips!
Anonymous 11 months ago
Mandatory reading prior to accepting any role where one interacts with people. As my Mother used to remark when encountering “brilliant” book-smart people who couldn’t connect positively with others, “Unfortunately, they flunked recess.”
Aaron Bowbyes More than 1 year ago
Shawn Anchor is a noteworthy author. He manages to use his psychic-like neuroscience knowledge to grip the reader page after page. This is the 21st century bible of positivity. With about 200 pages, I finished this one in 4 weeks (could have finished quicker if I hadn’t savored it). If you have any curiosity about happiness, positivity, self-improvement, organizational behaviour, or leadership, this book is worth reading. There are seven “principles” covered: The Happiness Advantage, The Fulcrum & The Lever, The Tetris Effect, Falling Up, The Zorro Circle, The 20-Second Rule, and Social Investment. I will only briefly describe these topics, so PLEASE read them for yourself. He goes much further into detail and provides evidence to back these claims in the book.
Shawn- More than 1 year ago
GShuk on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Great summary of the relevant research in happiness written in an entertaining way. While he does re-frame some ideas there is nothing really new.
mogie on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Research which documents mental attitude being very relevant to success. Practical advice on how to change your thinking. Good for managing people and also gaining an understanding of past experiences and reactiions.
jpsnow on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This is a worthy addition to the popular works about positive psychology. Achor describes 7 key concepts, all of which are straightforward, relevant and practical. The two strategies that most influenced me were the "Tetris Effect" and the "20-Second Rule." In the Tetris Effect, he describes how much our brains can develop a specific orientation or thought pattern - not just in attitude but even how we approach and see problems. In the "20-Second Rule," he provides the practical advice to make habits easy to form by putting the desired objective within easy, visible reach.
gwbranecky on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I enjoyed this book.
amimariscal on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I listened to this audiobook and it was one of the best books I've ever heard! I will definitely be listening again periodically. Shawn Achor narrates it himself and he is warm and fun to listen to.. (Check out his TED talk on Positive Psychology.) There are tons of practical tips and activities that can easily be learned and integrated into your life... If any book can be considered life changing, this is one of them! And the information is all backed up with scientific studies and funny, endearing stories.
Stan Scotsdale More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
First of all, I would have to say I agree with the reviewer who said it was too expensive.  $12.00 would have been appropriate, not $25.00.  And another reviewer mentioned too much discussion regarding 'antidotes' although I believe it was anecdotes.  The first 50 pages were him descring how happiness helps you, how he taught this at Harvard, etc.  Seeing as the book was 210 pages, I think he should have coned this down to 10 pages max.   By poage 50, I was about to toss the book until I looked over at page 51 where he was giving some practical examples.  However, meditation, exercise and spending your money on activities that are socially enjoyable rather than on things is pretty well known. During most the the rest of the book, I felt I was just sitting there at Starbucks listening to someone tell me their opinions.  There was very little practical, hands on application until page 160-170 in which he discussed the 20 second rule and other approaches to breaking bad habits or reforming good ones.  But other than that, the book was filled with observations that anyone has had ovver the  years or heard from a good friend or family member.  I would not recommend this book to any of my friends and am sorry I spent the money.
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Tuscaloosa More than 1 year ago
Great book with great practical advice!! An eye opener!!
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