Bringing the Text to Life
It’s midwinter, and you have the seasonal doldrums. And today, you aren’t interested in the Super Bowl because your team ended the season with a 5-and-11 record. Or something. You aren’t happy.
But now you can be, thanks to Sonja Lyubomirsky’s The How of Happiness. Twenty years of psych research led Lyubomirsky to a scientific approach to our culture’s elusive pursuit of happiness. Slicing happiness up like a pie, she claims there are three major pieces to a cheerful makeup.
Fifty percent of our happiness comes from disposition in our DNA. We are Tigger or Eeyore based more on Mom and Dad than anything else. Like the thermostat on the wall, our temperament has a preset temperature.
Surprisingly, only 10 percent of happiness comes from our life circumstances. A raise at work. The kids’ good grades. Having a cute guy in the church group ask us out.
Looking at newlyweds and lottery winners, researchers have found that people almost always return to their genetic dispositional set points...