Sunday, May 1, 2011

Dan Gilbert on Deciding To Be Happy

Call to action: Choose to be happy in any context.

Gilbert explains that our prefrontal cortex is responsible for simulating possibilities. But, it also hinder us from making good decisions by making us believe that "different outcomes are more different than they really are."

He gives a lively discussion and explains that 3 months from a really bad event is enough for us to move on. He says that happiness can be synthesized and suggests that it is as enduring and real as the kind of authentic happiness when you get exactly what you aim for.

He also proves that freedom is a friend to authentic happiness, but it's an enemy to synthetic happiness. He provides an entertaining narration of the experiments they did at Harvard. He admits that some things are better than others. But, trying to get the better thing in a bad way is not good.

He concludes by saying that we don't have to chase happiness because we can be happy if we choose to be happy.

Dan Gilbert is amusing and convincing in this talk as well as in his book, Stumbling on Happiness.

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