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The Happiness Equation

Want Nothing + Do Anything = Have Everything

By Neil Pasricha
13-minute read
Audio available
The Happiness Equation: Want Nothing + Do Anything = Have Everything by Neil Pasricha

The Happiness Equation (2016) unlocks nine essential secrets to living a happy life. These are guidelines that can help anyone reap the rewards that come with having a positive outlook on life. Happiness isn’t just about reducing stress and anxiety; it’s about paving the way to great work and success.

  • Unhappy people
  • Employees who dread their job
  • Readers looking for guidance in life

Neil Pasricha, a New York Times best-selling author, is an entrepreneur, public speaker and advisor. He is also the creator of the popular blog 1,000 Awesome Things and its accompanying publication, The Book of Awesome.

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The Happiness Equation

Want Nothing + Do Anything = Have Everything

By Neil Pasricha
  • Read in 13 minutes
  • Audio & text available
  • Contains 8 key ideas
The Happiness Equation: Want Nothing + Do Anything = Have Everything by Neil Pasricha
Synopsis

The Happiness Equation (2016) unlocks nine essential secrets to living a happy life. These are guidelines that can help anyone reap the rewards that come with having a positive outlook on life. Happiness isn’t just about reducing stress and anxiety; it’s about paving the way to great work and success.

Key idea 1 of 8

You need to start from a place of happiness and do things because you enjoy doing them.

Early on in life, you may have been taught that happiness comes only after you’ve done a considerable amount of great work and become a huge success. But it’s this exact lesson that’s responsible for many people’s unhappiness, because the equation actually works the other way around.

Which leads us to the first secret of happiness: success and great work come from people who are already happy.

Happiness shouldn’t be something you chase. External circumstances, such as getting a raise at work, account for only 10 percent of personal happiness. The rest comes from within and is based on seeing the world in a positive light.

To help you recognize everyday happiness, use the 20 minute replay before going to bed. This simple practice involves keeping a daily journal to write down at least one thing that made you happy during the day. Not only will this help you recognize future moments of happiness; it will allow you to relive that happiness at the end of the day.

Another important contributor to happiness is motivation, which brings us to the second secret of happiness: do things because you love doing them, not because of external goals and rewards, or what other people think.

When your motivation is money or admiration, you’re entering a never-ending cycle of unhappiness. Even if you reach your goal, it will only result in a fleeting moment of happiness before you feel the compulsion to set another goal.

The author started his blog, 1000 Awesome Things, because writing brought him joy and he liked the idea of posting one happy detail for a thousand workdays.

However, when the site became popular, he began setting goals. At first he wanted to reach one million visitors. Once he’d done that, he wanted to reach ten million. Then he set his sights on publishing a book. And then the book had to become a bestseller. There was simply no end.

He was chasing a happiness that didn’t – and couldn’t – last. So he resolved to only do things for the sheer joy of doing them.

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