The Myths of Happiness by Sonja Lyubomirsky

The Myths of Happiness

Happiness expert Sonja Lyubomirsky’s research-based lessons in how to find opportunity in life’s thorniest moments In The Myths of Happiness, Sonja Lyubomirsky isolates the major turning points of adult life, looking to both achievements (marriage, children, professional satisfaction, wealth) and failures (singlehood, divorce, financial ruin, illness) to reveal that our misconceptions about the impact of such events is perhaps the greatest th...

Details The Myths of Happiness

TitleThe Myths of Happiness
Release DateJan 3rd, 2013
PublisherThe Penguin Press HC
GenreNonfiction, Psychology, Self Help, Personal Development, Science, Health, Social Science, Philosophy, Spirituality, The United States Of America

Reviews The Myths of Happiness

  • Lucille Zimmerman
    I'm about to have my first book published. The idea of seeing boxes of books on my front doorstep feels both surreal and monumental. It's a huge accomplishment that I will celebrate with a party, in a red barn, with twinkly lights. There will be music, friends, food, and revelry. But I know that a published book won't bring me happiness.A few days ago I was talking to a friend who has authored over 40 books. I told her I knew that having a publis...
  • Apricity
    NOTE: Although I am not familiar with the author's finances, I am relatively sure that she is rather wealthy judging from the examples taken from her own life (e.g. moving to a new house where the shower has six shower heads, husband is a securities lawyer, etc.). To her credit, she does acknowledge the limitations that wealth (or a relative lack thereof) places on her research. 1. Pursue an appropriate goal The crisis point at the heart of this ...
  • Cara
    I found this book's topic refreshing. The author takes a series of "I can't be happy if/when... (fill in the blank)" fallacies and lays them to rest. Using the theory of hedonic adaptation - our tendency to get used to almost anything positive that happens to us - she argues that certain adult achievements (marriage, kids, job, wealth), while initially satisfying, will not make us intensely happy (or for as long) as we expect they will.Conversely...
  • Nabilah Firdaus
    The underlying message of this book: We adapt.Human beings have a tremendous capacity to adapt to new things or circumstances. This phenomenon is called hedonic adaptation. Therefore, ruminating about bad stuffs and being scared of an absence of good stuffs in our life don't make sense. Because human beings adapt.This book was just okay. I thought it was more of the science or theories behind happiness but turned out, it was just a set of self-he...
  • Graeme Newell
    This book provides a refreshing new vantage point on the major turning points of adult life: marriage, children, career, wealth. It also shows new strategies for dealing with life’s failures: singlehood, divorce, financial problems, illness, etc. The author reveals some major misconceptions about the impact good and bad events will have on long-term well-being.Lyubomirsky argues that the path-of-life narrative we all learned is simply not reali...
  • Crystal Starr Light
    Bullet Review:DNFing at page 50.I was thinking this book would be a bit more generic, more about how the mind reacted to happiness and unhappiness. Instead, this looks at specific events (I'll be happy when I meet Mr. Right, I can't be happy now that I have cancer, etc.) and how we react and can counteract.Problem is - I don't need any of that. I love my life. I'm not in a many years long committed relationship, bored and repetitive. I'm not sing...
  • Heidi The Reader
    In The Myths of Happiness, Lyubomirsky gives excellent advice for coping with different situations that can occur in life. Most of it didn't apply to me.I wish she had come right out and said something like: it doesn't matter what happens to you externally in life, it's what goes on internally that counts. People come and go, situations come and go, time passes, the world turns, the rain's all just life. But, she's never that straight ...
  • Mike Walker
    “Nothing in life is as important as you think it is while you are thinking about it.”This was a quote that Sonja Lyubomirsky mentioned in the Introduction. She credited it to a fortune-cookie, but for me this quote set the tone for the whole book. Sonja makes well thought out points about happiness. How we see, comprehend and relate to it. Unlike most of the self-help books I have read, "The Myth of Happiness" has a very simple process - Chan...
  • Laila (BigReadingLife)
    The basic message is this: Humans adapt. We get used to really good things in time (and take them for granted) and we get used to really bad things in time too. So fearing the really bad stuff doesn't really help anything, and fearing a life without the really good stuff doesn't make sense either. I came away from this book with the reassuring notion that one's life experience, once basic needs are met, is mostly in what you think about it.
  • Smitha Murthy
    There’s something about reading Sonja Lyubomirsky - you know that she makes a lot of sense and that you ought to really read this with intent and purpose but the mind wanders. I wonder why? Is it just me? Lyubomirsky, if at all you are interested in the science of happiness, is the foremost scientist on happiness. I had read her earlier book and while this book breaks down several of the myths, I felt that the reading of it might be a tad diffi...
  • Rubina
    I have always enjoyed Sonja Lyunomirsky’s books on positive psychology and happiness. This book does not disappoint. Many of us are waiting for happiness, believing that we cannot be happy in the present. I liked Lyubomirsky’s approach of debunking the myths of happiness, that we can’t be happy or can only be happy when we have the right job, meet the right partner, have lots of money, achieve our goals. By exploring and acknowledging these...
  • Jen
    This book was my book club's April pick. The title intrigued me, particularly after reading pieces by Tim Kreider:, I don't think that I'm the right audience for this book, first and foremost because philosophically, I don't look at life as a search for happiness, but rather a journey for meaning and contentedness with "now." That, in itself, is a lifetime's worth of work. Nevertheless, I could see ...
  • Deb (Readerbuzz) Nance
    I read children’s picture books and travel narratives and creative nonfiction and literary fiction and Books About Happiness.Yes, Books About Happiness. It’s one of my favorite genres.I’ve read Learned Optimism by Martin Seligman and Happiness: Lessons from a New Science by Richard Leyman and Gretchen Rubin’s Happiness Project and Happier at Home and the Dalai Lama’s The Art of Happiness and Sonja Lyubomirsky’s earlier book, The How o...
  • Arminzerella
    Sonja Lyubomirsky compiles and summarizes some important research and information concerning our happiness – what really makes us happy as opposed to what we think will make us happy. There are all kinds of things that we believe (or are taught, or have absorbed through our culture) about happiness. For instance, that it can be found in the perfect relationship/marriage, through having children, by being rich. Similarly, we believe that being s...
  • Laura
    This book was such a waste of time. I expected an interesting evaluation of what happiness means to people, and got a preachy self-help book that read like a textbook. The bland writing made it easy to skim over what did not apply to me, which was the first hundred pages as well as the last hundred. I'll admit, the middle section was interesting. It dealt primarily with money and job insecurities, which was the closest thing to anything relatable...
  • Wanda (The Watered Soul)
    For me this book was a slow read but I like the concept of the book and I believe that society as a whole would do better, if we had more people teaching these truths. Perhaps if people knew it was normal to have these ebbs and flows of happiness in their relationships, there would be lower rates of divorce. The key things I took away from the book was the importance of gratitude and remembering (how things use to be) plays into us having fulfill...
  • Jacob
    Although I was already aware of many of the ideas in this book, in terms of what really makes people happy and strategies for maximizing happiness and minimizing unhappiness, I imagine that this might be a really good book for someone who is not as aware. I did find it helpful myself, particularly the second to last chapter on coping with large life disappointments and failed pursuits. In addition to this one, there are chapters on almost all maj...
  • Betsy Hover
    I was so excited to received this book in a Giveaway. This book was absolutely awesome. The author has completely nailed it, in reference to taking the crisis points in our life and looking at them in a completely different way."Instead of being frightening or depressing, your crisis points can be opportunities for renewal, growth, or meaningful change. However, how you greet then really matters."I always tell my children:**It's not the trail in ...
  • Bryn
    This title was at best misleading and at worst totally deceptive. I thought it was more of the science/data behind happiness; turns out, it was self-help tips for ways to achieve happiness in certain situations: when your marriage isn't the best; when you're single; when you're older; when you can't have kids; when you do have kids, etc. By its design, even if you enjoy this type of book, at least part of it won't be relevant to you: if your kids...
  • Zoe
    This book far exceeded my expectations on every level: appealing writing style, amount of scientific research, and degree of direct helpfulness to my own life. Now that I've said that, it may not exceed your own expectations, which are now quite high, but read it and find out why not (it's called hedonic adaptation)!
  • Laurie Thurston
    Absolutely affirming....Always knew I was a glass-half-full kind of gal, but now I see the research behind it. VERY needed during a decidedly 'unhappy' time of my life, reminding me that I'm in far more control than I sometimes think. Hope for me yet :)
  • GB Noriega
    I listened to this during commute. It was an enjoyable listen, and it gave great applicable exercises. Not sure if it was what I was looking for.
  • Sarah
    i don't generally read self help books...but this one was actually...helpful! i needed a pick-me-up and this was it. really liked it.
  • Deb
    **Happiness within**Reading Sonja’s first book _The How of Happiness_ made me very happy. [ ☺] And, her current gem of _The Myths of Happiness_ made me very, very happy. [☺ ☺ ]Beautifully weaving together scores of scientific research (we’re talking over 700 journal articles!) into blissfully readable prose, Sonja dispels the myths related to what does—and doesn’t—make us happy. As she describes: “The goal of _The Myths of Happ...
  • Timo
    I like to read one of these Positive Psychology books every year or so just to remind me that we have actual science that can help guide our lives. Most of us follow mythologies, instead; be it religious or secular mythologies. And the vast majority of our mythologies have not been squared with the latest in social science (a problem I'm working on: But one of the troubling aspects of much of these books, though they use re...
  • Carlos
    While I was worried to find Lyubomirsky describe the book as a self-help book in the introduction, given my distaste for them, I was happy to find that she does not fall into the same clichés that plague that genre. Lyubomirsky manages to make the book be both a lay-friendly introduction to the psychology of happiness and a wonderful tool to help the reader find his or her own happiness. By studiously basing her advice on multiple psychological ...
  • Taylor Caruso - Bucher
    The Myths of Happiness was not what I expected as a psychology student moving toward a doctorate. I was actually let down with what I thought was a lack of educational resources and appropriate references, studies, and applicable examples. The given examples were more for the middle class and upper-class people and did not touch base on the world outside of the United States. The author could have acknowledged traditions and expectation of other ...
  • Gauchoholandes
    Explains in a pragmatic and structured way, backed by ample scientific research, why the good stuff doesn’t last (hedonic adaptation) and why the bad stuff doesn’t have to (practical coping strategies), indeed counterintuitively busting some myths along the way. Includes a useful bad news response model (flow chart), explains very clearly why it’s better to regret what we’ve done than what we haven’t done, the pros and cons of decision-...
  • Jenna Spencer
    Listened to the audio book and was left wondering if the layout of the physical book made it better. I felt lost at times and felt like the inflections of the person that was reading opposed what they book was saying. Most of it was common sense if you have ever been in therapy or taken psychology 101 but if you are lost this is full of great reminders and helpful things you can do to get back on track.