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Hardwiring Happiness: A Simple Way to Permanently Reset Your Brain, Stockpile Inner Strength, and Appreciate Each Day's Gifts

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Why is it easier to ruminate over hurt feelings than it is to bask in the warmth of being appreciated? Because your brain evolved to learn quickly from bad experiences but slowly from the good ones. You can change this. Hardwiring Happiness lays out a simple method that uses the hidden power of everyday experiences to build new neural structures full of happiness, love, co Why is it easier to ruminate over hurt feelings than it is to bask in the warmth of being appreciated? Because your brain evolved to learn quickly from bad experiences but slowly from the good ones. You can change this. Hardwiring Happiness lays out a simple method that uses the hidden power of everyday experiences to build new neural structures full of happiness, love, confidence, and peace. Dr. Hanson's four steps build strengths into your brain-- balancing its ancient negativity bias--making contentment and a powerful sense of resilience the new normal. In mere minutes each day, we can transform our brains into refuges and power centers of calm and happiness.

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Why is it easier to ruminate over hurt feelings than it is to bask in the warmth of being appreciated? Because your brain evolved to learn quickly from bad experiences but slowly from the good ones. You can change this. Hardwiring Happiness lays out a simple method that uses the hidden power of everyday experiences to build new neural structures full of happiness, love, co Why is it easier to ruminate over hurt feelings than it is to bask in the warmth of being appreciated? Because your brain evolved to learn quickly from bad experiences but slowly from the good ones. You can change this. Hardwiring Happiness lays out a simple method that uses the hidden power of everyday experiences to build new neural structures full of happiness, love, confidence, and peace. Dr. Hanson's four steps build strengths into your brain-- balancing its ancient negativity bias--making contentment and a powerful sense of resilience the new normal. In mere minutes each day, we can transform our brains into refuges and power centers of calm and happiness.

30 review for Hardwiring Happiness: A Simple Way to Permanently Reset Your Brain, Stockpile Inner Strength, and Appreciate Each Day's Gifts

  1. 4 out of 5

    Hanne

    Very few of us have a smooth, glorious childhood. Most of us have a slightly rocky one, sometimes perhaps a very rocky one. And even if we have plenty of good memories too, it’s the painful ones that tend to stand out the most. Rick Hanson has a powerful analogy for this: The brain is like Velcro for bad experiences but Teflon for good ones. Our human brains have been wired to remember mistakes, simply because to our Stone Age Brains it was important to remember and learn from those mistakes. It Very few of us have a smooth, glorious childhood. Most of us have a slightly rocky one, sometimes perhaps a very rocky one. And even if we have plenty of good memories too, it’s the painful ones that tend to stand out the most. Rick Hanson has a powerful analogy for this: The brain is like Velcro for bad experiences but Teflon for good ones. Our human brains have been wired to remember mistakes, simply because to our Stone Age Brains it was important to remember and learn from those mistakes. It could mean the difference between live or die. Better a false positive than a false negative when it’s a case of predators possibly sneaking up on you. Only today we could use a little less velcro… Sometimes we spend too much time dissecting all the bad things; and it's true that swirling around in negative thoughts only makes you sink deeper, but that focusing on the few good things that come your way every day, makes you stand up just that little bit taller. It can help all of us, whether you’re on top of the mountain or whether that mountain is looming in front of you. Because at the very core this book is about everyday things. About slowly trying to make the Velcro disappear and making us more confident and open to the world around us, and you can do that wherever you are. My one criticism for this book is immediately also its strength. Its scope isn’t massive, and it actually bangs home just a handful of important messages. That sometimes sounds a bit repetitive, but on the other hand it can be a huge plus too. I’ve read a lot of non-fiction lately that covered so much ground, I felt like I didn’t remember any of it afterwards. That’s unlikely to happen here. He has a few things he wants to convey, and does that very effectively. The writing is solid, the background is good, and the starting level is low enough that everyone could ease into it. There are some similarities to mindfulness, but also quite some differences. I never got the hang of mindfulness, but I did immediately start to take some things of this book with me every day. It’s more tangible than mindfulness or its equivalents which always seemed a bit fuzzy to me.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Specialk

    Did anyone else think this book was just adjectives matched together under categories? While I appreciated the bare bones brain science of this, it really could have just been a couple page article. Maybe with an appendix of a bullet list with tips for achieving positive connections. I did this on audio, so it's possible it doesn't come across as well when narrated...but I genuinely zoned out for minutes at a time, only to focus back on the audiobook and realize he is still just giving me a list Did anyone else think this book was just adjectives matched together under categories? While I appreciated the bare bones brain science of this, it really could have just been a couple page article. Maybe with an appendix of a bullet list with tips for achieving positive connections. I did this on audio, so it's possible it doesn't come across as well when narrated...but I genuinely zoned out for minutes at a time, only to focus back on the audiobook and realize he is still just giving me a list of adjectives. Gave up halfway through. Read the synopsis. That will get you the gist.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Sasha

    Hardwiring Happiness is a psychology/but actually mostly a self-help book. I obviously went into it with expectations that weren't met, but it's not all bad. I did get the psychological research that I wanted and more. I won't get into it here, but the ideas presented definitely went in line with what I've learned, and made a lot of sense. And it was thankfully backed up with pages and pages of legit references. The methods outlined in the book are very easy to follow and even easier to try to u Hardwiring Happiness is a psychology/but actually mostly a self-help book. I obviously went into it with expectations that weren't met, but it's not all bad. I did get the psychological research that I wanted and more. I won't get into it here, but the ideas presented definitely went in line with what I've learned, and made a lot of sense. And it was thankfully backed up with pages and pages of legit references. The methods outlined in the book are very easy to follow and even easier to try to use, even while you're reading the book. I especially liked the section that addresses the "mental blocks", a.k.a. criticisms of his method, and answered most of my questions to my satisfaction. One issue I had with the book was the repetitiveness and the unnecessary length, since the ideas were simple enough to need less elaboration. I understand why repetition was more needed in the last part, since you're not really supposed to read all the examples at the same time. But it was a problem throughout and I felt like I was being beaten over the head with the same words, over and over again. But on the other hand, I remember a lot of the book, so maybe the repetition is a necessary evil. This book has a solid foundation to teach anyone to be a little happier. And we all need that, right? -I received an ARC from the publisher in exchange for an honest review-

  4. 5 out of 5

    Rick

    While the concept for the book is very good--hardwiring your brain to focus on positivity instead of the opposite--the book's real meat could have been easily covered in the space of a magazine article. The rest was filler and repetition and after a while got boring...and annoying. And that made me UNHAPPY.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Lassie

    When you notice something positive, sit with it for a while to hardwire it into your brain. The end. Now you can spare yourself 200 pages.

  6. 4 out of 5

    William Cline

    Kudos for citing your sources, but there's some serious over-simplification of neuroscience going on here. Summary: Get in the habit of noticing and appreciating good things, especially small ones, to offset your natural inclination to focus on the negative. tl;dr: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fZUmA...

  7. 4 out of 5

    Paula Cappa

    Are there hidden powers in everyday POSITIVE experiences? Neuropsychologist Rick Hanson answers this question with brain science, psychology, and practical “how- to” advice. This is not another book that boasts how to wallpaper negative thinking with positive thinking. Hanson instructs how to enrich and absorb the positives in your life, how to create solid positive experiences, find the good inside the bad, let go of the past, let go of criticizing, reduce worry and anxiety, grow yourself to be Are there hidden powers in everyday POSITIVE experiences? Neuropsychologist Rick Hanson answers this question with brain science, psychology, and practical “how- to” advice. This is not another book that boasts how to wallpaper negative thinking with positive thinking. Hanson instructs how to enrich and absorb the positives in your life, how to create solid positive experiences, find the good inside the bad, let go of the past, let go of criticizing, reduce worry and anxiety, grow yourself to become generous, kind, and exercise more compassion. All this helps positive brain building (responsive mode of the brain). He talks a lot about ‘negativity bias,’ which we all have and which dominates most of our thinking. So, switching gears to positive perspectives takes conscious effort both in external conditioning and internal conditioning in order to build inner strengths. The basic idea here is that ‘what flows through your thinking brain changes your brain.’ What I got out of this book was that “taking in the good” and “practicing good action” helps you see the good in yourself, in the world, and other people. And it’s easier than you might think. You will learn about the quality of fulfillment in relationships and how to upgrade all of your thinking in your work, family, friends. Seems to me we all need this book. Highly recommended. I read this book from my local library.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Elaine Benavidez

    The science behind brain plasticity is one of the foundations of this book. It not merely a "think positive" book as it actually speaks to the issue of ongoing brain neuron development and processes that actually impact hardwiring.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Imibroccoli

    The first thing I did when I finish this book was writing an email recommending it to all my students. Personally, I would not have been attracted to anything with the word 'Happiness' in it or as 'positive'.., if it were not for how impressed I was with his previous book 'Buddha's Brain'. I have been using mindfulness for some years, and this book is just what I needed whilst I felt I was hitting a bottle-neck in my own spiritual/ mindfulness practise. I instantly fell in love with Hanson's '' The first thing I did when I finish this book was writing an email recommending it to all my students. Personally, I would not have been attracted to anything with the word 'Happiness' in it or as 'positive'.., if it were not for how impressed I was with his previous book 'Buddha's Brain'. I have been using mindfulness for some years, and this book is just what I needed whilst I felt I was hitting a bottle-neck in my own spiritual/ mindfulness practise. I instantly fell in love with Hanson's '' Let Be, Let Go, Let In'' model. He eloquently captures how modern psychotherapy has dealt with 'Let Be' (via Mindfulness's 'sitting with', 'being with' attitude) , and the all- American, problem solving 'Let Go' element (CBT, Change Strategies). He adds the much neglected aspect of 'Let In'- how to increase and reinforce positive experiences in life, and how that can lead to long lasting changes. Hanson has really brought together ideas in modalities like NLP, Mindfulness, positive psychology and humanistic therapy into something that offers hope but also acknowledge the depth of human sufferings. I would recommend it to anyone who has some interest in extending their mindfulness practise- it would also tackle the anxiety many therapists hold towards the untapped field of neuroplasticity!

  10. 4 out of 5

    Frank Pacosa

    Loved this book. Mindfulness has been a life changer for me, but I found a lot of chaff with the wheat. I am skeptical that regular mediation past a point and long retreats make a difference. I wanted a way to bring mindfulness to life and not something left on the sit or at the retreat. I knew current research on our minds and learning theory would be key. Small repetitive behaviors are the most reinforcing for continuation of that behavior has been long know and Rick Hanson has amply demonstrated Loved this book. Mindfulness has been a life changer for me, but I found a lot of chaff with the wheat. I am skeptical that regular mediation past a point and long retreats make a difference. I wanted a way to bring mindfulness to life and not something left on the sit or at the retreat. I knew current research on our minds and learning theory would be key. Small repetitive behaviors are the most reinforcing for continuation of that behavior has been long know and Rick Hanson has amply demonstrated how mindfulness can be brought to everyday life. We are so hungry for healing, love, etc. that many often give far too much power to religious leaders (eastern spirituality included). Hasn't anyone read Luther's condemnation of a central font of spirituality? This method along with other neuro scientific breakthroughs can free us from the often selfish grasp of "spiritual leaders" and lead us to personal freedom and wise decision making in life.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Stephanie Thoma

    The takeaway from this book: when good things happen, don't brush 'em off your shoulder, but rather, let them marinate into your being. Having a stronger reaction to the positive is called "approach orientation" and lends itself to setting and reaching goals. For those who experience depression, anxiety, etc. it's often due to letting what we attribute bad feelings to marinate, allowing the good stuff to be brushed off. Rick champions developing inner strengths (common sense, integrity, positivity The takeaway from this book: when good things happen, don't brush 'em off your shoulder, but rather, let them marinate into your being. Having a stronger reaction to the positive is called "approach orientation" and lends itself to setting and reaching goals. For those who experience depression, anxiety, etc. it's often due to letting what we attribute bad feelings to marinate, allowing the good stuff to be brushed off. Rick champions developing inner strengths (common sense, integrity, positivity, inner peace, determination and a warm heart) to combat what we can attribute negativity to in life. An orientation of liking and wanting, with an emphasis on liking w/o wanting is suggested as the path to feeling happiest. I would agree at first glance, but lacking desire entirely can be a few steps away from developing a learned apathy, rather than the zen quality Hanson likely intended. Perhaps the idea is to want something, but not become attached to the outcome after trying for it, and to like and appreciate what is already accessible and within reach. He also says to enjoy low hanging fruit. Any ambitious individual would be put off by this idea, but it makes sense to strive for more, while enjoying what's less, but enough. Other stuff: - Combine compassion and assertiveness to become most open to the depths of intimacy - "The hole does not get rid of the donut" - Activity: make a list of emotions you'd like to "take in" and ways to experience this more often, and actively engage in acting out these activities once per day for at least 2 weeks.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Yvonne

    Here is a book that finally explains in detail how the evolutional development of the human mind kept us safe, but hasn't really kept up with our social evolution. In a word, our emotional biases toward danger, scarcity or hostile others once kept us ahead of saber-toothed tigers, quicksand and enemy tribes. In the 21st century, our automatic responses may make us one of the Fortune 500, but get us there at the risk of heart attack, adrenal overload and nervous depression. The human brain has de Here is a book that finally explains in detail how the evolutional development of the human mind kept us safe, but hasn't really kept up with our social evolution. In a word, our emotional biases toward danger, scarcity or hostile others once kept us ahead of saber-toothed tigers, quicksand and enemy tribes. In the 21st century, our automatic responses may make us one of the Fortune 500, but get us there at the risk of heart attack, adrenal overload and nervous depression. The human brain has developed a tendency to stay focused on perceived dangers and risks. Basically, it responds to taking out a mortgage the same way it would have responded to one's being attacked by a woolly mammoth. The good news? Rick Hanson writes exercises that each individual can do to ease our natural tendencies to focus on the bad. Based on research that shows the beneficial effects of meditation and self-directed thought, Dr. Hanson encourages us to "take in the good" and absorb the many pleasant aspects of our lives. Unlike "positive thinking," Dr. Hanson doesn't advocate forgetting about distressing experiences. He challenges his readers to not take the good for granted and let the effects of positive feelings (safety, comfort, satisfaction, inclusion) drive our response to life's vagaries. In the end, he states, reducing the impact of negative emotion leads to a better emotional life, healthy security, and increased ability to relate others.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Caidyn (SEMI-HIATUS; BW Reviews; he/him/his)

    This is basically Buddhism without saying it's Buddhism. Hanson gives little meditations and affirmations to hold in your mind. Exercises to imagine. He talks about desire, suffering, and impermanence. He talks about holding others in your mind and extending good will onto them. Seriously, this is just Buddhism and if you like that, great. I generally like that myself, but this wasn't what I wanted to go for. I thought this was going to be about neuroscience. Looking at neuroscience, the way thin This is basically Buddhism without saying it's Buddhism. Hanson gives little meditations and affirmations to hold in your mind. Exercises to imagine. He talks about desire, suffering, and impermanence. He talks about holding others in your mind and extending good will onto them. Seriously, this is just Buddhism and if you like that, great. I generally like that myself, but this wasn't what I wanted to go for. I thought this was going to be about neuroscience. Looking at neuroscience, the way things fire and wire together, neuropsychology. Hear a lot about MRIs and fMRIs. That sort of stuff. Which this is not. This is all about meditation and holding the best you in your mind. Which isn't a bad thing at all. It's very helpful, but if I had known that, I wouldn't have read this book. I was basically raised practicing the same things that Hanson talks about in his book so I know how it works and everything he's trying to convince readers of throughout the book. This is going to be one I want in my future office, but probably one I would only re-read to highlight meditations I like or expound further with annotations in the margin for myself with counseling in mind.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Jason Fella

    I've read many books on mindfulness and re-training your brain, so I wasn't sure this would really have anything unique to offer. Surprisingly it did. It really approaches things from a different angle, and if what the author says is true, this could offer some real relief for a lot of people (including myself) who have depression, anxiety, and similar issues. The techniques he teaches are extremely simple and can be done quickly and conveniently and in so many different situations, a person wou I've read many books on mindfulness and re-training your brain, so I wasn't sure this would really have anything unique to offer. Surprisingly it did. It really approaches things from a different angle, and if what the author says is true, this could offer some real relief for a lot of people (including myself) who have depression, anxiety, and similar issues. The techniques he teaches are extremely simple and can be done quickly and conveniently and in so many different situations, a person would be hard-pressed to not find time or opportunity to do them. He specifically mentions the only people who wouldn't be able to apply the techniques are people with severe depression or people who are in extreme physical pain and can't focus on something other than that. I can't give the book five stars yet, but if it does end up helping me I will certainly come back and change that =)

  15. 5 out of 5

    Emaan

    This book is a balm. The audiobook is a balm with the fairy dust of Rick Hanson's soothing voice mixed in. I have become a de fact Rick Hanson fangirl. Whenever I encounter difficulty or find myself struggling to take in the good, I think, WWRHD (What Would Rick Hanson Do?) Lots of people prefer the meditations of Thich nhat hanh and Jon Kabat Zinn and while they are wonderful too, let me tell you, Rick Hanson, with his friendly old man ways and dashing charm, will change your life. I would reco This book is a balm. The audiobook is a balm with the fairy dust of Rick Hanson's soothing voice mixed in. I have become a de fact Rick Hanson fangirl. Whenever I encounter difficulty or find myself struggling to take in the good, I think, WWRHD (What Would Rick Hanson Do?) Lots of people prefer the meditations of Thich nhat hanh and Jon Kabat Zinn and while they are wonderful too, let me tell you, Rick Hanson, with his friendly old man ways and dashing charm, will change your life. I would recommend this book to everyone in the world so that they can lessen self imposed suffering and learn to marvel in the daily joys we are given. But I would not recommend it to Dick Cheney because he does not deserve it.

  16. 4 out of 5

    ريحانة

    This book is part neuropsychology, part self-help. I appreciated the scientific parts a lot more than where the four-step technique came in. Perhaps this book would be better consumed in audio format given all the practical exercises. An interesting read overall.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Lucinda

    This fascinating, illuminating read is truly genius! This scientifically based book presents an informative insight into achieving happiness in everyday life, instilling a sense of peace and calm contentment within our minds. Rick Hanson {author of bestselling ‘Buddha’s Brain’} is a masterful writer, who makes everything so clear and comprehendible so that anyone can gain a great deal from reading this book. Using simple methods can in practise change our brain so that we do not dwell on the neg This fascinating, illuminating read is truly genius! This scientifically based book presents an informative insight into achieving happiness in everyday life, instilling a sense of peace and calm contentment within our minds. Rick Hanson {author of bestselling ‘Buddha’s Brain’} is a masterful writer, who makes everything so clear and comprehendible so that anyone can gain a great deal from reading this book. Using simple methods can in practise change our brain so that we do not dwell on the negative; therefore by focusing on the positive aspects of life we are in essence gaining maximum fulfilment and enjoyment everyday. At first, being a rather pessimistic and often negative {somewhat doubting} person I was unsure of this book being of any help. I was however absolutely delighted by how this book didn’t just exceed all expectations but that it actually works! It is targeted towards anyone who is curious and seeks something impacting and interesting to read, hence I would highly recommend it to all. I have learnt so much about positive psychology and how it makes such a difference to our well being, in life and in everything that we do and aim to do for the future. This new brain science of contentment, calm and confidence is ultimately satisfying, uplifting and practical {as you can apply it in your own personal lifestyle}. Thought provoking and profoundly meaningful this is a book that certainly makes you think by altering your perception upon life and the way you regard things/ situations etc. Including examples and helpful hints and tips this brainy book is not to be missed! I won a copy of Rick Hanson’s book ‘Hardwiring Happiness’ through a book giveaway…and I am so eternally grateful.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Karen

    In "Hardwiring Happiness," Rick Hanson, Ph.D. provides an easy and actionable "recipe" for giving positive experiences greater weight to enable an ongoing sense of peace and contentment. I'd learned of Dr. Hanson's books based on my interest in meditation and his articles about the benefits of using meditation in his psychology practice. I chose to listen to this book when I realized I'd become so focused on worries about loved ones' health issues that I wasn't appreciating happy events as much In "Hardwiring Happiness," Rick Hanson, Ph.D. provides an easy and actionable "recipe" for giving positive experiences greater weight to enable an ongoing sense of peace and contentment. I'd learned of Dr. Hanson's books based on my interest in meditation and his articles about the benefits of using meditation in his psychology practice. I chose to listen to this book when I realized I'd become so focused on worries about loved ones' health issues that I wasn't appreciating happy events as much as I would normally. Dr. Hanson's approach focuses on identifying (or creating) positive experiences and then extending and reinforcing the good feelings those experiences evoke. Wait, isn't this just taking the time to smell the roses? Absolutely, but it's all too easy to overlook stopping to savor positive experiences when one is feeling especially busy or preoccupied with day to day concerns... and not taking the time to savor positive experiences actually reduces one's ability to cope with stresses as they arise. I listened to the audio version in order to benefit from the guided meditations included within, and also picked up the kindle ebook as a handy reference. The author narrated the audio version and I found listening to his observations helpful in reinforcing the concepts he shared. I recommend "Hardwiring Happiness" to anyone who feels they aren't appreciating life's gifts as much as they'd like, and wants to take effective steps to more fully savor the good.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Eric Stamper

    Interesting book... This book was basically about mindfulness and awareness, in particular of the good things in life. It discusses how our brains evolved to notice the negative things in our environments as a survival mechanism, and how our brains have become naturally biased towards the negative. The primary aim of the book was to present the idea that through certain practices, in particular the having of good experiences and the strengthening of them in our daily lives, we can re-wire our br Interesting book... This book was basically about mindfulness and awareness, in particular of the good things in life. It discusses how our brains evolved to notice the negative things in our environments as a survival mechanism, and how our brains have become naturally biased towards the negative. The primary aim of the book was to present the idea that through certain practices, in particular the having of good experiences and the strengthening of them in our daily lives, we can re-wire our brains to become less biased towards the negative, and more positive and happy in our lives. Those positives will include a greater sense in achieving what are referred to as "core needs" - a sense of security and safety, a sense of contentment and accomplishment, and a sense of connection and love. This book is a good introduction to mindfulness of the good, and offers plenty of practices to apply in various situations of life, as well as a decent bibliography of other books and articles for further study.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Jeremy

    This is a practical, helpful book. The big idea is that neurologically we are programmed (or at least tend) to focus on the negative. Such negativity is harmful for a variety of reasons, but we can work on focusing on the positive. The method for doing so is Hanson's acronym HEAL: Have a positive experience. Big or small. Enrich that experience. Focus on it, think about different aspects of it. Absorb the experience. Imagine it enveloping you, sinking into you, or otherwise becoming part of you, ph This is a practical, helpful book. The big idea is that neurologically we are programmed (or at least tend) to focus on the negative. Such negativity is harmful for a variety of reasons, but we can work on focusing on the positive. The method for doing so is Hanson's acronym HEAL: Have a positive experience. Big or small. Enrich that experience. Focus on it, think about different aspects of it. Absorb the experience. Imagine it enveloping you, sinking into you, or otherwise becoming part of you, physically and emotionally. Link the experience to negative experiences. Be able to step back and contemplate negative experiences (big or small) but then have a positive experience to switch to in order to overcome the negative. The book is somewhat repetitive (especially the last chapter), but the big idea and HEAL method are definitely helpful. As a Christian, I see how this ties in to some deeper spiritual practices (cf. Proverbs 3:5ff and Philippians 4:6-7) that have clear physical and emotional benefits as well.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Lisa

    I can just imagine giving this book to my clients. It seems too simple to be true. People want to think it's more complicated than this. But it really is this simple. The way you allow yourself to think really does change your life. Think differently and your life will change. We have an incredible lack of discipline over our thoughts. This book will teach you some really simple ways to think differently and change your brain structure. Over time, this will create more happiness, more peace, mor I can just imagine giving this book to my clients. It seems too simple to be true. People want to think it's more complicated than this. But it really is this simple. The way you allow yourself to think really does change your life. Think differently and your life will change. We have an incredible lack of discipline over our thoughts. This book will teach you some really simple ways to think differently and change your brain structure. Over time, this will create more happiness, more peace, more contentment. It really does work. But it really IS work; it is so easy to be lazy with our thoughts.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Marsmannix

    Maybe it's because i've labored under the burder of a "grumpy amygdala" all my life, but it was a relief to read an explanation of my journey with the "black dog" that didn't resort to Oprah-esque platitudes. Hanson provides data to demonstrate that those of us who walk in darkness do not suffer from a character flaw, but rather entered the world several yards behind the start line. He also offers explicit techniques to wrench your amygdala into a better direction. thank you for such an enlightenin Maybe it's because i've labored under the burder of a "grumpy amygdala" all my life, but it was a relief to read an explanation of my journey with the "black dog" that didn't resort to Oprah-esque platitudes. Hanson provides data to demonstrate that those of us who walk in darkness do not suffer from a character flaw, but rather entered the world several yards behind the start line. He also offers explicit techniques to wrench your amygdala into a better direction. thank you for such an enlightening work.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Pedro Ribeiro

    It's a original book. The ideia is very simple: our brain is like velcro for bad things, and like teflon for good ones. The reason is that our brain evolved to be like this to increase our chance to survive. But we can chance this by pratice and still be a very realistic person. We can be happier and still keep our feet on the ground. I highly recommend this book.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Frank

    The book's technique for changing our baseline attitude/happiness seems plausible. I will try it. Why only 2 stars? The book is guilty of a crime I cannot tolerate: too much filler. This book could have been just 10 pages, and single-sided at that!

  25. 4 out of 5

    Aram Kokoy

    As you get closer to the end chapters it becomes repetitive

  26. 5 out of 5

    Ashley Corbett

    I really struggled with this book. On one hand it teaches you what I do believe could be some very useful and efficient ways to notice the good facts in your life and dwell less frequently on the negative ones, but it's written in a really overtechnical and honestly boring way. The metaphors and comparisons helped me understand but there was no need for the number of examples in each situation. When you finally think you're through with all the science-y talk, it pops up again and again througho I really struggled with this book. On one hand it teaches you what I do believe could be some very useful and efficient ways to notice the good facts in your life and dwell less frequently on the negative ones, but it's written in a really overtechnical and honestly boring way. The metaphors and comparisons helped me understand but there was no need for the number of examples in each situation. When you finally think you're through with all the science-y talk, it pops up again and again throughout. It was very interesting and there's at least one tactic that I'm forcing myself to follow but this could have been more of a mini-manual than a full 220 pages.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Katherine

    In the beginning and middle sections of the book, I found a lot of tools quite useful, even if some areas were repetitive. Towards the end, I started to lose focus because the guided tools I thought weren't meant to be read, but practiced. I borrowed this book from the library, so admittedly I skipped a few sections because I was feeling restless reading the same pattern over and over, even if the author gives you a head's up. Overall, this book is great for someone who has been coping with anxi In the beginning and middle sections of the book, I found a lot of tools quite useful, even if some areas were repetitive. Towards the end, I started to lose focus because the guided tools I thought weren't meant to be read, but practiced. I borrowed this book from the library, so admittedly I skipped a few sections because I was feeling restless reading the same pattern over and over, even if the author gives you a head's up. Overall, this book is great for someone who has been coping with anxiety or depression for long bouts of time and is really looking to reshape their brain. I'm fascinated with neuroscience, and loved the clinical parts of this book.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Michael Harris

    Accessible (as self-help often is), scientifically accurate (as self-help often is not), and genuinely helpful. I liked the detail and larger scope of his previous book, Buddha's Brain, a bit more. But I'm a psych student, so Hardwiring Happiness might be a better fit for those less interested in the neurology/clinical applications of Hanson's work, and more interested in just building positive emotion into their brain... which he really does lay out how to do.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Jason Wong

    A very powerful positive psychology method that can be used to rewire your brain to notice positive experiences more often as well as get more enjoyment out of them. However, honestly the method could be explained within a couple pages, most of the book is filler.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Sotiris Makrygiannis

    Easy and simple, very practical and sometimes hypnotic. A rather good book.

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