What makes us happy? Is it money, a fancy car, a nice house? Or is it something less tangible, something we have no control over? Is happiness in our blood? In this fascinating look at the world's most sought-after emotion, Dr. David Lykken recounts a series of extensive studies conducted on identical twins reared miles apart. The studies reveal that, no matter where we live or what we do, we have a consistent "Happiness Set Point": our overall levels of happiness remains the same. [via]
But our quest for constant contentment doesn't necessarily end there. While there's nothing we can do to change our genetic makeup, there's a lot we can do to make the most of our Happiness Set Point. As kind and candid as a good friend, Lykken reveals aspects of our lives that allow us to overcome our genes, that bring us pleasure. Whether it's a faithful pet, an interesting career, or the perfect lemon meringue pie, being what Lykken calls "an epicure of experience" is the key. Furthermore, Lykken outlines the emotions that deprive us of happiness, such as fear, anger, and shyness, and the ways that we can counteract them.
With unfailing good humor and fascinating scientific research, Happiness explores the surprising truth behind our moods, and presents a new way of thinking, guaranteed to put a smile on even the most somber face.