Happy Ever After: Escaping The Myth of The Perfect Life
Paul Dolan, the bestselling author of Happiness by Design, shows us how to escape the myth of perfection and find our own route to happiness.
Be ambitious; find everlasting love; look after your health ... There are countless stories about how we ought to live our lives. These narratives can make our lives easier, and they might sometimes make us happier too. But they ca...more
Dolan is a behavioral scientist and thus has, not surprisingly, a very scientific way of looking at this. However, I liked it that he made it more human and relatable by giving his own interpretations of things at times, whilst still leaving space for readers ...more
This book is a fascinating read and an excellent chance for self and societal reflection. While I found the introduction very academic (it’s been a long time since I used the word deontological), the rest of the book gave a broad overview of the societal stories we continue to tell ourselves. It doesn’t seek to be an authority on each topic or to cover the field, but force introspection and assessment of how we continue to believe and uphold those narratives.
While the arguments in the ...more
I was off to a bad start with this book when the author proclaimed that as an LSE professor he was not expected to swear. He then goes on to say that there is ...more
He asks questions at the beginning of every chapter like (totally paraphrasing from memory) 'Would you rather be highly educated but miserable most of the time, or have little education but be happy most of the time?' and the same question about a friend (ie 'would ...more
The book is broken down to simple everyday aspects of our lives, in which the "perfect" life is founded, like work success, wealth, and marriage. Backed up by actual studies and data, the chapters are both very interesting and enjoyable. Dolan provides examples, asks v ...more
Some very good points and advice made unpalatable by the heavy hand of Malthusian doom and gloom about how humans are overpopulating the planet and our grandchildren are all going to die a horrible death by global warming (or whatever the moving disaster target du jour is).
I'm happy to disagree with a number of the conclusions, I'm grateful for the opportunity to get out of my own narrative ...more
By the way, forget what you knew about class theory. Apparently class is determined by your leisure activities. This guy sure has a chip on his shoulder about being into body building.
However, he has jumped well on the bandwagon by putting 'happiness' in the title, so it will surely sell a lot in our miserable modern societies.
Allows us to question what we think is right or will bring us happiness. Allows us to consider changes in our lives that go against the grain in order to reduce misery rather than 'find happiness'. Keep the conversation out there and in public domain