Our most commonly held formula for success is broken. Conventional wisdom holds that if we work hard we will be able to be more successful, and if we are more successful, then we’ll be happy. If we will be able to just find that great job, win that next promotion, lose those five pounds, happiness will follow. But recent discoveries in the field of positive psychology have shown that this formula is in fact backward: Happiness fuels success, not the other way around. When we are positive, our brains turn into more engaged, creative, motivated, energetic, resilient, and productive at work. This isn’t just an empty mantra. This discovery has been repeatedly borne out by rigorous research in psychology and neuroscience, management studies, and the bottom lines of organizations around the globe.
In The Happiness Advantage, Shawn Achor, who spent over a decade living, researching, and lecturing at Harvard University, draws on his own research—including one of the most largest studies of happiness and potential at Harvard and others at companies like UBS and KPMG—to fix this broken formula. The use of stories and case studies from his work with thousands of Fortune 500 executives in 42 countries, Achor explains how we will be able to reprogram our brains to turn into more positive in order to gain a competitive edge at work.
Isolating seven practical, actionable principles that have been tried and tested far and wide from classrooms to boardrooms, stretching from Argentina to Zimbabwe, he shows us how we will be able to capitalize on the Happiness Advantage to fortify our performance and maximize our potential. Among the principles he outlines:
• The Tetris Effect: how to retrain our brains to spot patterns of possibility, so we will be able to see—and seize—opportunities wherever we look.
• The Zorro Circle: how to channel our efforts on small, manageable goals, to gain the leverage to gradually conquer bigger and bigger ones.
• Social Investment: how to reap the dividends of investing in one of the most greatest predictors of success and happiness—our social fortify network
A must-read for everyone trying to excel in a world of increasing workloads, stress, and negativity, The Happiness Advantage isn’t only about how to turn into happier at work. It’s about how to reap the benefits of a happier and more positive mind-set to achieve the strange in our work and in our lives.