The Art of Happiness with Arthur Brooks

Past Episodes

The Art of Happiness with Arthur Brooks

Meaning and Purpose in Life and Work

Although this graduation season looks much different than years past, 2020 graduates are still faced with the same question that we’ve all had to answer (or for some of us, are still trying to answer): what vocation will add value and meaning to my life? In this episode, Arthur talks with Stanford Business School professor and behavioral scientist Jennifer Aaker about distinguishing between meaning and happiness in life and work. They also discuss the psychology of humor and how AI just might help improve our well-being.

References and further reading:

Some key differences between a meaningful life and a happy life | Jennifer Aaker

It’s Not Going to Be That Fun: Negative Experiences Can Add Meaning to Life | Jennifer Aaker

The Shifting Meaning Of Happiness | Jennifer Aaker

Unhappiness and Age | David G. Blanchflower

Cracking a Joke at Work Can Make You Seem More Competent | Alison Wood Brooks

The Dragonfly Effect: Quick, Effective, and Powerful Ways To Use Social Media to Drive Social Change | Jennifer Aaker

Humor, Seriously: Why Humor Is a Secret Weapon in Business and Life (and How Anyone Can Harness It. Even You.) | Jennifer Aaker

4 Rules for Identifying Your Life’s Work | Arthur Brooks

The Art of Happiness with Arthur Brooks

Building a Lifetime of Happiness

How does happiness change over a lifetime? What common mistakes do successful people make when faced with professional decline? In this episode, Arthur and Ceci discuss how our lives tend to follow the trajectory of the legendary monomyth, the hero’s journey, and Arthur shares how to conquer the oft-forgotten last stage, when our successes and triumphs are behind us and we find ourselves grappling with feelings of irrelevance and misery.

References and further reading:

Our Narrative of Success Leads to Unhappy Retirements | Arthur Brooks

Your Professional Decline Is Coming (Much) Sooner Than You Think | Arthur Brooks

The Art of Happiness with Arthur Brooks

Three Equations for a Happy Life

What better time to contemplate our lives more deeply and reflect on the true sources of happiness than in the midst of global pandemic? In this episode, Arthur and show co-producer Ceci Gallogly discuss his “three equations for happiness” and share how you can develop the habits for living a better life, even in a pandemic. Arthur also shares some practical advice on coping with the growing uncertainty and disappointment caused by the ongoing Coronavirus lockdown.

References and further reading:

The Three Equations for a Happy Life, EvenDuring a Pandemic | Arthur Brooks

Two Errors Our Minds Make When Trying to Grasp the Pandemic | Arthur Brooks

The Art of Happiness with Arthur Brooks

Love In The Time of Corona

Amid the outbreak of the coronavirus and weeks of social isolation, many people are feeling anxious and grappling with loneliness. In the inaugural episode of The Art of Happiness, Arthur talks with Claremont Graduate University professor Paul Zak, the pioneer of the field of neuroeconomics and leading expert on oxytocin, the “love molecule.” They discuss the brain science of human connection, social distancing, and the power of hugs, and share three steps to take today to be less lonely in quarantine.


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