Finding Happiness the Blue Zones Way
On Sale: November 2, 2010
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What makes us happy? It's not wealth, youth, beauty, or
intelligence, says Dan Buettner. In fact, most of us have
the keys within our grasp. Circling the globe to study the
world's happiest populations, Buettner has spotted several
common principles that can unlock the doors to true
contentment with our lives.
Working with leading researchers, Buettner identifies the
happiest region on each of four continents. He explores why
these populations say they are happier than anyone else, and
what they can teach the rest of us about finding
contentment. His conclusions debunk some commonly believed
myths: Are people who have children happier than those who
don't? Not necessarily—in Western societies, parenthood
actually makes the happiness level drop. Is gender equality
a factor? Are the world's happiest places to be found on
tropical islands with beautiful beaches? You may be
surprised at what Buettner's research indicates.
Unraveling the story of each "hotspot" like a good mystery,
Buettner reveals how he discovered each location and then
travels to meet folks who embody each particular brand of
happiness. He introduces content, thriving people in
Denmark, in Singapore, in northeastern Mexico, and in a
composite "happiest place in America." In addition, he
interviews economists, psychologists, sociologists,
politicians, writers, and other experts to get at what
contributes to each region's happiness.
Buettner's findings result in a credible, cross-cultural
formula and a practical plan to help us stack the deck for
happiness and get more satisfaction out of life. According
to Buettner's advisory team, the average person can control
about forty percent of his or her individual happiness by
optimizing life choices. These aren't unreasonable demands
on a person's lifestyle, and they often require only slight
changes. They fall into three categories that make up the
way we live our lives: the food we eat, the way we exercise,
and the social networks we foster. It's all about nourishing
the body and the spirit. Heeding the secrets of the world's
happiness all-stars can help us make the right choices to
find more contentment in our own lives and learn how to thrive.
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