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Archive for 'happiness'

Kindle Daily Deals for Thurs. Jan 1 – Over 40 Books to Jump-Start New Year’s Resolutions, $2.99 or Less Each

January 1, 2015

Highlights include:

Browse the List

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new book – ‘The Good Life: Unifying the Philosophy and Psychology of Well-Being’ by Michael A. Bishop

December 19, 2014

The Good Life

The Good Life: Unifying the Philosophy and Psychology of Well-Being by Michael A. Bishop (Oxford University Press, 2014)

(amazon.co.uk)

Book description from the publisher:

Philosophers defend theories of what well-being is but ignore what psychologists have learned about it, while psychologists learn about well-being but lack a theory of what it is. In The Good Life, Michael Bishop brings together these complementary investigations and proposes a powerful, new theory for understanding well-being.

The network theory holds that to have well-being is to be “stuck” in a self-perpetuating cycle of positive emotions, attitudes, traits and accomplishments. For someone with well-being, these states — states such as joy and contentment, optimism and adventurousness, extraversion and perseverance, strong relationships, professional success and good health — build upon and foster each other. They form a kind of positive causal network (PCN), so that a person high in well-being finds herself in a positive cycle or “groove.” A person with a lesser degree of well-being might possess only fragments of such a network — some positive feelings, attitudes, traits or successes, but not enough to kick start a full-blown, self-perpetuating network.

Although recent years have seen an explosion of psychological research into well-being, this discipline, often called Positive Psychology, has no consensus definition. The network theory provides a new framework for understanding Positive Psychology. When psychologists investigate correlations and causal connections among positive emotions, attitudes, traits, and accomplishments, they are studying the structure of PCNs. And when they identify states that establish, strengthen or extinguish PCNs, they are studying the dynamics of PCNs. Positive Psychology, then, is the study of the structure and dynamics of positive causal networks.

The Good Life represents a new, inclusive approach to the study of well-being, an approach committed to the proposition that discovering the nature of well-being requires the knowledge and skills of both the philosopher in her armchair and the scientist in her lab. The resulting theory provides a powerful, unified foundation for future scientific and philosophical investigations into well-being and the good life.

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$0.99 kindle ebook on Amazon: ‘How Schopenhauer Got Me Through My Mid-Life Crisis’ by Charles Alonso

December 17, 2014

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new book – ‘How Adam Smith Can Change Your Life: An Unexpected Guide to Human Nature and Happiness’ by Russ Roberts

October 18, 2014

How Adam Smith Can Change Your Life

How Adam Smith Can Change Your Life: An Unexpected Guide to Human Nature and Happiness by Russ Roberts (Portfolio, 2014)

(kindle ed.), (amazon.co.uk), (UK kindle ed.)

Book description from the publisher:

A forgotten book by one of history’s greatest thinkers reveals the surprising connections between happiness, virtue, fame, and fortune.

Adam Smith may have become the patron saint of capitalism after he penned his most famous work, The Wealth of Nations. But few people know that when it came to the behavior of individuals—the way we perceive ourselves, the way we treat others, and the decisions we make in pursuit of happiness—the Scottish philosopher had just as much to say. He developed his ideas on human nature in an epic, sprawling work titled The Theory of Moral Sentiments.

Most economists have never read it, and for most of his life, Russ Roberts was no exception. But when he finally picked up the book by the founder of his field, he realized he’d stumbled upon what might be the greatest self-help book that almost no one has read.

In How Adam Smith Can Change Your Life, Roberts examines Smith’s forgotten masterpiece, and finds a treasure trove of timeless, practical wisdom. Smith’s insights into human nature are just as relevant today as they were three hundred years ago. What does it take to be truly happy? Should we pursue fame and fortune or the respect of our friends and family? How can we make the world a better place? Smith’s unexpected answers, framed within the rich context of current events, literature, history, and pop culture, are at once profound, counterintuitive, and highly entertaining.

By reinvigorating Smith’s neglected classic, Roberts provides us with an invaluable look at human behavior through the lens of one of history’s greatest minds.

Google Books preview:

See also: Author’s website

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new book – ‘Happiness by Design: Change What You Do, Not How You Think’ by Paul Dolan

August 28, 2014

Happiness by Design

Happiness by Design: Change What You Do, Not How You Think by Paul Dolan (Hudson Street, 2014)

(kindle ed.), (amazon.co.uk), (UK kindle ed.)

Book description from the publisher:

This is not just another happiness book. In Happiness by Design, happiness and behavior expert Paul Dolan combines the latest insights from economics and psychology to illustrate that in order to be happy we must behave happy. Our happiness is experiences of both pleasure and purpose over time and it depends on what we actually pay attention to. Using what Dolan calls deciding, designing, and doing, we can overcome the biases that make us miserable and redesign our environments to make it easier to experience happiness, fulfilment, and even health.  With uncanny wit and keen perception, Dolan reveals what we can do to find our unique optimal balance of pleasure and purpose, offering practical advice on how to organize our lives in happiness-promoting ways and fresh insights into how we feel, including why:

• Having kids reduces pleasure but gives us a massive dose of purpose
• Gaining weight won’t necessarily make us unhappier, but being too ambitious might
• A quiet neighborhood is more important than a big house

Vividly rendering intriguing research and lively anecdotal evidence, Happiness by Design offers an absorbing, thought-provoking, new paradigm for readers of Stumbling on Happiness and The How of Happiness.

Google Books preview:

See also: Book website

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