Solve for Happy

Engineer Your Path to Joy

Gawdat, Mo
Mo Gawdat is the Chief Business Officer at Google's [X]. In the last ten years he has made happiness his primary topic of research, diving deeply into literature and conversing on the topic with thousands of people in more than a hundred countries. He is also a serial entrepreneur who has cofounded more than twenty businesses. He speaks Arabic, English, and German. In 2014, motivated by the tragic loss of his son, Ali, Mo began pouring his findings into his first book, Solve for Happy.
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  • Solve for Happy Chapter One
    Setting Up the Equation

    It doesn't matter if you're rich or poor, tall or short, male or female, young or old. It doesn't matter where you come from, what you do for a living, what language you speak, or what tragedies you've endured. Wherever you are, whoever you are, you want to be happy. It's a human desire about as basic as the drive to take the next breath.

    Happiness is that glorious feeling when everything seems right, when all of life's twists and turns and jagged edges seem to fit together perfectly. In those often all-too-brief flickers of genuine happiness, every thought in your head is agreeable, and you wouldn't mind if time stood still and the present moment extended forever.

    Whatever we choose to do in life is ultimately an attempt to find this feeling and make it last. Some people look for it in romance, while others seek it in wealth or fame, and still others through some form of accomplishment. Yet we all know of people who are deeply loved, achieve great things, travel the world, snap up all the toys money can buy, indulge in every luxury, and still long for the elusive goal of satisfaction, contentment, and peace-also known as happiness.

    Why should something so basic be so hard to find?

    The truth is, it isn't. We're just looking for it in the wrong places.

    We think of it as a destination to reach, when in fact it's where we all began.

    Have you ever searched for your keys only to realize they were in your pocket all along? Remember how you removed everything from your desk, searched beneath the couch, and got more and more frustrated the longer they went missing? We do the same thing when we struggle to find happiness "out there," when, in fact, happiness is right where it's always been: inside us, a basic design feature of our species.
    Our Default State

    Look at your computer, smartphone, or other gadgets. They all come with preferences preset by the designers and programmers. There's a certain level of screen brightness, say, or a localized user interface language. A device fresh from the factory, set up the way its creators think best, is said to be in its "default state."

    For human beings, simply put, the default state is happiness.

    If you don't believe me, spend a little time with a human fresh from the factory, an infant or toddler. Obviously, there's a lot of crying and fussing associated with the start-up phase of little humans, but the fact is, as long as their most basic needs are met-no immediate hunger, no immediate fear, no scary isolation, no physical pain or enduring sleeplessness-they live in the moment, perfectly happy. Even in distressed parts of the world, you can see children with dirty faces using little pebbles as toys or holding a cracked plastic plate as the steering wheel of an imaginary sports car. They may live in a hovel, but as long as they have food and a modicum of safety, you'll see them run around hooting with joy. Even in news coverage of refugee camps, where thousands have been displaced by war or natural disaster, the adults in front of the camera will appear grim, but in the background you'll still hear the sounds of kids laughing as they play soccer with a knot of rags for a ball.

    But it's not only kids. This default state applies to you too.

    Look back into your own experience. Summon up a time when nothing annoyed you, nothing worried you, nothing upset you. You were happy, calm, and relaxed. The point is, you didn't need a reason to be happy. You didn't need your team to win the World Cup. You didn't need a big promotion or a hot date or a yacht with a helicopter pad. All you needed was no reason to be
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Einband Taschenbuch
Seitenzahl 368
Erscheinungsdatum 02.01.2018
Sprache Englisch
ISBN 978-1-5011-5758-5
Verlag Simon + Schuster
Maße (L/B/H) 21.3/14.2/2.7 cm
Gewicht 296 g
Buch (Taschenbuch, Englisch)
Buch (Taschenbuch, Englisch)
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Fr. 23.90
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