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The Science of Happiness

Page history last edited by PBworks 13 years, 10 months ago

Summary From Publishers Weekly

A leading German science journalist explores the nature of happiness through the latest research in brain science in this instructive study. Positive and negative feelings, he says, are generated by different mental systems; thus, people whose right frontal lobe dominates tend to be more pessimistic, while those with a stronger left lobe are predisposed to optimism and self-confidence. Despite genetic programming, the author says, the brain is "malleable," and anyone with a desire for happiness is able to perceive and experience more pleasurable emotions. Drawing on complex experiments with animals, he suggests specific strategies to overcome depression, including engaging in activities, especially physical activities or simple tasks that easily offer a sense of success; and writing down negative thoughts, then marshaling the evidence against them. Klein looks at the complex relationship between income and satisfaction and the importance of self-determination and social connections. The surest path to happiness, Klein is convinced, is to know oneself.

 

Chapter by Chapter Summary

1: The Secret of Smiling

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