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Happier: Learn the Secrets to Daily Joy and Lasting Fulfillment

3.82  ·  Rating Details ·  4,055 Ratings  ·  314 Reviews
Can we really learn to be happy? Yes, we can. Each semester, nearly 1,400 students sign up for Harvard professor Tal Ben-Shahar's life-changing class, "How to Get Happy." Currently it's the hottest course at Harvard, taken by 20 percent of its graduates.

In Happier, Professor Ben-Shahar brings the ideas of the Ivory Tower to Main Street, distilling the lessons and exercise
Audio CD, Abridged
Published June 1st 2007 by HighBridge Audio (first published 2007)
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Aug 10, 2007 Randy rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: psychology
Positive psychology is a really interesting field. And maybe if I hadn't already read superior books on the topic, I would've been more impressed with this one. But frankly, the dude's just not a very compelling writer.

Don't be fooled by the fact that this guy teaches Harvard's most popular class (which you will read about eight times before you even start the book). He seems to think of himself as more of a theorist than a researcher. A lot of times he settles for overgeneralizations (e.g., div
Feb 23, 2016 Amanda rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Dr. Tal Ben-Shahar, a professor at Harvard University who leads a positive psychology seminar, wrote Happier "to raise awareness of the general principles underlying a happy and fulfilling life." The philosophical questions surrounding happiness have interested him since the age of sixteen when he became the Israeli national squash champion. He was perplexed as to why after fulfilling his dream he didn't experience the happiness he expected. Of course, he was ecstatic after winning, but almost i ...more
Duffy Pratt
Oct 11, 2011 Duffy Pratt rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: psychology
This is a pretty thin book with about enough content to fill a magazine article. The book centers around two ideas. First, that happiness is the "ultimate currency." The use of "currency", here, I think is unfortunate. Currency is actually a means of exchange that, at least with modern floating currencies, has no intrinsic value. A twenty dollar bill is not worth much in and of itself. It's worth comes from what we can exchange for it. Happiness is not like that. We don't exchange happiness for ...more
May 29, 2009 pri rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2009
very simple but profound book. i found myself bookmarking a lot of sections and exercises to return to when i had a bit more time. certainly, reading it did not make me suddenly *happier* - but it gave me some things to reflect on more.

two quotes:

"The proper role of goals is to liberate us, so that we can enjoy the here and now. If we set off on a road trip without any identified destination, the trip itself is unlikely to be much fun. If we do not know where we are going or even where we want
The last book I'll tell you about was an airport impulse buy. It was me being afraid I might run out of things to read in Eastern Europe and knowing how hard it is here to get books in English. “Happier: Learn the Secrets to Daily Joy and Lasting Fulfillment” is by Tal Ben-Shahar, a Harvard professor whose “Happiness Class” quickly became the most popular courses on campus!

This is not your typical self-help book full of mindless platitudes. Instead it is more like a workbook for your life. It's
Great read. While some of it is obvious (find what makes you happy), he makes some great points. He poses some poignant questions on how to discover what matters to you, and how to add happiness to your life. He briefly discusses external vs. internal manifestations of happiness. Definite 5 star.

A few quotes from the book:

"To live a meaningful life, we must have a self-generated purpose that possesses personal significance rather than one that is dictated by society's standards and expectations
Patrik Hallberg
May 23, 2013 Patrik Hallberg rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: business
The backbone of the most popular course at Harvard today. A lot of great exercises to complete! I liked his hamburger model to describe people
- the vegetarian burger is the rat racer - future benefit, present detriment - inability to enjoy what they are doing and their persistent belief that once they reach a certain destination they will be happy.
- the junk-food burger is the hedonist - future detriment, present benefit - seeks pleasure, avoids pain.
- the worst burger is the nihilist - future
This "self-help" book, I would recommend. It started out slow, but became more interesting and insightful as it went along. The book has you ask questions and complete sentences as exercises in the study of becoming "Happier". I actually worked through these exercises by writing down the questions/sentences and answers in a spiral. The thought patterns send you down many different paths to determine where your true happiness comes from and what you can do to feel happier in the greater part of y ...more
Oct 23, 2009 Peggy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The author taught this Happier course at Harvard and he had the largest enrollment of students in Harvard history.
The book is a somewhat dry read for a self help book however but he references lots of studies and research which is unusual in this field and very interesting.
I love his basic premise which is that the ultimate currency is not money but happiness. In any situation, we should determine how much of the most important "currency" (happiness) we are going to earn.
I saw on TV that Denma
Apr 26, 2010 Anna rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: nonfiction
1. Create meaningful rituals.
2. Daily gratitude journal.
3. Live and appreciate the present moment.
4. Enjoy the journey: "Happiness is not about making it to the peak of the mountain, nor is it about climbing aimlessly around the mountain, happiness is the experience of climbing toward the peak."
5. Struggles, hardship, and challenge are necessary components of an emotionally rich life.

"Don't ask yourself what the world needs, ask yourself what makes you come alive. And then go and do that. Be
Apr 20, 2014 Fellini rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: kindle
Читаю понемногу. Банальные вроде истины, но их тоже нужно периодически освежать в памяти.

Внедряйте не более одного-двух ритуалов за раз, и прежде чем приступать к выработке нового ритуала, про- верьте, насколько прежние ваши нововведения успели стать привычками. Как говорит Тони Шварц, «даже если перемены к лучшему происходят со скоростью улитки, это гораздо лучше, чем амбициозный провал… Успех подпитывается успехом».
Общество вознаграждает нас за результаты, а не за сам проце
♥ Ibrahim ♥

Instead of feeling despondent I am not perfectly happy as I think I ought to be, and instead of wasting my energies trying to gauge how happy I am, I am going to recognize that happiness is an unlimited resource. I am going to focus on ways in order to attain it. What I am going to do? Happiness is lifelong pursuit, anyway. To say I am going to be disciplined and leave it at that as we do with New Year's resolutions is not enough or practical. I need rituals, that is, routine, and it is useful b
May 21, 2011 Brian rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
(3.0) will try some of the exercises and possibly change rating

So I hadn't heard of this book nor the whole positive psychology trend and then I read Tony hsieh's book, delivering happiness, and he points to this book as a great resource. So I figured i'd give it a try (believe it's my first self help).

Anyway, not sire anything here is revolutionary: find things you enjoy and do them more, find meaning in your life, do a lot of introspection and make the changes you need in order to become happi
Jan 06, 2016 Nicki rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Meh. Not great, not terrible. The problem I had with this book was that it was so theoretical as to be nearly impossible to apply in any concrete way. Also, I felt like the people who can read/get something out of this book are wealthy, first world singles living in a free society with no obligations other than to themselves and the means to do whatever they want (basically, the Harvard students that the author teaches). The whole talk of 'duty' and 'sacrifice' being bad for your happiness (even ...more
Zahra Clayborne
Mar 25, 2013 Zahra Clayborne rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I recommend going through the entire Harvard course offered (it is available on Youtube, although it is 20+ hour long lectures). Positive psychology is such an interesting, innovative new field, and I appreciate Ben Shahar's aim to make this field of psychology accessible to everyone, since no one is going to read journal articles for fun (well, I do, but I'm in the minority here). I like that his tips are backed not only by his own anecdotes, but hard data as well. This isn't a get happy quick ...more
May 19, 2016 Heather rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I have read quite a few happiness books and wasn't initially impressed. However as I continued reading I thought that Ben-Shahar made some important points that other authors didn't fully cover. Essentially the book is about finding meaning in life, and he makes a strong case for why money and success aren't enough to bring happiness. There is much of the research that other books cover that he doesn't, but what he does cover he discusses clearly and thoroughly. It was worth the time to read. I ...more
Dana *
Interesting theories and observations. Alternative way to look at happiness in life. I listened to the cd version first, and am reading it to reinforce some of the ideas. Highly recommend to provoke some thought.
Elizabeth Gordon
This book was assigned for my Positive Psychology class. I found a lot of it interesting, although some of it felt a little cheesy at times.
Misericordia ❣
"Научиться быть счастливым"
Tom Oldale
Dec 18, 2016 Tom Oldale rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Happier is not going to break any new ground or blow you away anytime soon, but what it does do in a simple and concise manner is encourages you to look at life in a slightly different light.

The exercises and "Time Ins" it contains are a perfect way of getting you to actively change some habits and create new ones for the greater good of your happiness. They allow you to slowly make small changes in your everyday routine that will inevitably help you to analyse what really makes you happy so yo
Oct 05, 2016 Julia rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Ironically, after reading this book I felt less happy. It's not that there isn't valuable information here, although much of it I'd learned myself in one of my college classes at the far less prestigious San Francisco State than the author's Harvard workplace. That was, actually, what drew me to the book. The author is a professor at Harvard, and this book is like the workbook companion to one of the classes he teaches, touted as the most popular class at Harvard. It is taught, and sought after ...more
Vu Chi
Splendid read!

I was totally engaged from the very first page to the end. This was my second book from the same author. This book is an excellent reminder for all of us, no matter who we are or what our station in life is, to enjoy the presence. Would highly recommend as a gift to all the special people in your life.
Mar 09, 2017 Daniel rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I feel the value in self-help books is in guiding you through a reflection on your own life using a framework particular to the book. He pulls together a range of ideas from positive psychology, so that framework is less clear but it means it covers more ground. Enjoyable read.
Naska O'Liri
Mar 07, 2017 Naska O'Liri rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
і більше можете не шукати психологічних книг❤ ...more
Feb 24, 2017 Cleym rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Grâce à la psychologie positive Tal Ben-Shahar nous explique comment être heureux au quotidien.
En étant attentif à notre environnement, grâce à la pleine conscience.
Megan Mcewen
Nov 01, 2016 Megan Mcewen rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A surprisingly specific and actionable book to increase healthy behavior at home and at work.
Pavel Annenkov
Jan 16, 2017 Pavel Annenkov rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Про счастье в одной книге. Основано на курсе который автор читал в Гарварде.
Dec 31, 2016 Matt rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Highly impactful book. Worth your time, could be life changing.
I've had this book on my to-read list for a loooonnng time; I couldn't find it at our local library in Hawaii, and I finally put borrowed it here. I hate to admit it, but after such a long wait I think I expected more from it.

It was a fairly simple discussion about happiness in general; what it means, the importance of having it and how to get it. Tal Ben-Shahar provides personal anecdotes, exercises and opportunities for reflection.

If followed carefully and taken to heart, I am sure that his
Steven Colborne
May 27, 2013 Steven Colborne rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I have recently finished reading the book Happier by Harvard lecturer and psychologist Tal Ben-Shahar. The book was of interest to me as it discusses the nature of happiness, and how we can achieve greater levels of happiness in our lives. This is a subject to which I have dedicated a great deal of thought in recent weeks, as I have attempted to adjust the happiness balance in my own life.

One might well approach the reading of such a book with a sceptical attitude. The self help market is floode
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Tal Ben-Shahar (Hebrew: טל בן-שחר, also known as Tal David Ben-Shachar) is an Israeli teacher and writer in the areas of positive psychology and leadership.

Tal Ben-Shahar taught at Harvard, where his classes on Positive Psychology and The Psychology of Leadership were among the most popular courses in the University's history. Today Tal teaches at the Interdisciplinary Center, Herzliya.

Tal receive
More about Tal Ben-Shahar...

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“the best moments usually occur when a person’s body or mind is stretched to its limits in a voluntary effort to accomplish something difficult and worthwhile” 14 likes
“Ralph Waldo Emerson explains, "It is one of the most beautiful compensations of this life that no man can sincerely try to help another without helping himself.” 12 likes
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