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Archive for 'happiness'

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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Kindle Daily Deal (4/16) – $1.99 for ‘The Secrets of Happy Families’ by Bruce Feiler

April 16, 2014

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$0.99 kindle ebook – ‘The Dalai Lama on What Matters Most: Conversations on Anger, Compassion & Action’

April 6, 2014

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new book – ‘Hacking Happiness: Why Your Personal Data Counts and How Tracking it Can Change the World’ by John Havens

March 20, 2014

Hacking Happiness

Hacking Happiness: Why Your Personal Data Counts and How Tracking it Can Change the World by John Havens (Tarcher, 2014)

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

Book description from the publisher:

In Hacking Happiness, futurist and contributing Mashable writer John C. Havens introduces you to your “quantified self”—your digital identity represented by gigabytes of data produced from tracking your activities on your smartphone and computer.  Harvested by megacorporations such as Google, Facebook, and Amazon, Havens argues that companies gather this data because of its immense economic value, encouraging a culture of “sharing” as they hoard the information based on our lives for private monetary gain.

But there’s an alternative to this digital dystopia. Emerging technologies will help us reclaim this valuable data for ourselves, so we can directly profit from the insights linked to our quantified selves. At the same time, sensors in smartphones and wearable devices will help us track our emotions to improve our well-being based on the science of positive psychology. Havens proposes that these trends will lead to new economic policies that redefine the meaning of “wealth,” allowing governments to create policy focused on purpose rather than productivity.

An issues book highlighting the benefits of an examined life in the digital world, this timely work takes the trepidation out of the technological renaissance and illustrates how the fruits of the Information Age can improve our lives for a happier humanity.

See also: Excerpt (Introduction, pdf), Author’s website

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