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The Happiness Advantage: The Seven Principles of Positive Psychology That Fuel Success and Performance at Work

Unabridged Audiobook

Written By: Shawn Achor

Narrated By: Shawn Achor

Publisher: Random House (Audio)

Date: September 2010

Duration: 7 hours 20 minutes


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.


  • Lily Valley

    This book was Incredible! Please write another book!

  • Andrew Schwarz

    Felt repetitive and redundant. Couldn't help but think the whole time that an article or listicle on the subject would have sufficed. Many of the items the author brings up are described as powerful, revolutionary, or shocking. However, they all seemed pretty feasible to me. Had he just told me the 7 principles without the onslaught of obvious supporting evidence, I would have believed him just the same.

  • Philippe Augustin

    I really wanted to like and enjoy this book. Alas. it suffers from the same ailment that so many business books suffer from; turning what should be a short book (100 pages max) into a 200+ page dilution. Enough with the overused mention of the saber tooth tiger, Roger Banister, Richard Branson, the countless name drops and the studies attached to them. Can an author be a little bit more "authentic" (buzzword that's all the rage now), and present to us his actual thoughts on his subject matter. Damn it I really wanted to like this one, but the irritation of perpetual namedrop was overwhelming and I had to stop listening. The author could have just expounded on the three elements of happiness that he brought up at the beginning of the book, and he would have been on point. Happiness = Pleasure + Engagement + Meaning. I was on the short side of that equation listening to that book unfortunately.

Happiness Advantage: The Seven Principles of Positive Psychology That Fuel Success and Performance at Work

by Shawn Achor

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Happiness Advantage: The Seven Principles of Positive Psychology That Fuel Success and Performance at Work, Shawn Achor