Happiness: Unlocking the Mysteries of Psychological Wealth

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In 2007 I really enjoyed the book Stumbling on Happiness, which explains why this book was recommended to me.

Happiness: Unlocking the Mysteries of Psychological Wealth
Happiness: Unlocking the Mysteries of Psychological Wealth by Ed Diener and Robert Biswas-Diener was good. A lot of the material I already understood. However, three things stood out to me in this book.

  1. An explanation of how chronic stress affects us at the cellular level by shortening something called telomeres. These are the caps of the DNA that protect our chromosomes. Stress leads to shorter telomeres and greater health risk. Learning how to alleviate stress could keep your telomeres longer and allow your body to replicate cells with “fidelity”.
  2. A mathematical formula on wealth happiness that I discovered years ago, only I never wrote it down. 😉 Happiness = attainments / aspirations. In other words, keep your desires less than your income to increase your happiness.
  3. Chapter 11 was excellent. If you can’t find time to read the entire book, read this chapter on Attention, Interpretation and Memory. “Upbeat folks tend to look for positives (attention), often think of neutral events as being positive and find growth in adversity (interpretation), and recall more rewarding memories (memory).”

Despite the lengthy introduction, this was a good book. (you can start reading on page 29)