The Happiness Advantage by Shawn Achor

The Happiness Advantage

By Shawn Achor

  • Release Date: 2010-09-14
  • Genre: Self-Improvement
Score: 4.5
From 282 Ratings
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Our most commonly held formula for success is broken.
Conventional wisdom holds that if we work hard we will be more successful, and if we are more successful, then we’ll be happy. If we can 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 actually backward: Happiness fuels success, not the other way around.

When we are positive, our brains become 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 largest studies of happiness and potential at Harvard and others at companies like UBS and KPMG—to fix this broken formula. Using stories and case studies from his work with thousands of Fortune 500 executives in 42 countries, Achor explains how we can reprogram our brains to become more positive in order to gain a competitive edge at work.
Isolating seven practical, actionable principles that have been tried and tested everywhere from classrooms to boardrooms, stretching from Argentina to Zimbabwe, he shows us how we can capitalize on the Happiness Advantage to improve 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 can 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 greatest predictors of success and happiness—our social support 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 become happier at work. It’s about how to reap the benefits of a happier and more positive mind-set to achieve the extraordinary in our work and in our lives.


  • Step by step

    By yonny85
    Shawn Achor does a great job explaining "Positive Psychology" and teaching the "Happiness Advantage" step by step... A must read for anyone wanting to live life to its fullest potential!
  • Great book

    By Tyler @
    Highly recommend this book. It did confirm for me that my happiness precedes my success.
  • Interesting

    By RhythmPro
    Not only a very interesting book but it is very influential on my life which is really cool.
  • Powerful and practical

    By PDXJavaJunkie
    I've read many books on personal and professional development, and many of them were great, but the Happiness Advantage has directly impacted my life and career in a major and positive way. As Achor breaks down his findings on positive psychology into seven core principles, he doesn't just give you useful tips and ideas -- he gives you a complete framework for looking at your job, your personal relationships, your life and yourself. This book has literally helped to shift my perspective on many areas of life, reshaping notions I'd assumed to be givens. He backs up this big picture perspective with real world studies and data, and every chapter provides practical exercises to help you implement and master the principles. I supervise a team of inbound sales representatives in a call center environment, and I'm already seeing improvement in team morale and daily production since I've been utilizing the concepts in this book. If you want to help bring a team together and weed out negativity, as well as enhance your own life, this book definitely offers a path to get there.
  • A Must Read

    By jeffreyasmith
    Despite the concern that this book is focused on corporate America, I could not believe how incredibly transferable the principles are to every arena of life. I've known Shawn for many years and this is stellar work! Thanks, Shawn, for this great contribution.
  • Wonderful book

    By Jermaine Showtime Stone
    This is possibly the most inspirational book I've ever read.
  • Business Owner

    By Ughhhitsucks
    Loved this book! I have always been a positive person but now in trouble times and can continue being positive and help those around me be positive and happy too!
  • The Happiness Advantage

    By Afunfunfun
    This book should be read by anyone and everyone. The information in this book can help you transform your life and the way you look at it. READ IT!!!!!
  • I am inspired after reading this book

    By Robert Leithman
    I can't wait to try some of these ideas in my life.
  • Excellent Book

    By Frustrated Again...
    This is a straight forward, fun and easy to apply book that will make you stronger.