Shawn Achor & The Science of Happiness



Chances are the work of Shawn Achor is not new to you. Shawn is one of the leading researches and academics in the field of Positive Psychology and the Science of Happiness. 

I was lucky enough to spend the last few days at the Work Human conference in Austin, Texas and was re-inspired by Shawn and his work on this all too important topic.
Shawn defines happiness as 'The joy one feels moving towards their potential'. Let that sink in for a minute. Happiness is not a singular act or a fleeting moment, yet more so an on going state we create internally where life can come at us (as it does) and we can use the tools available to us (gratitude practice, exercise, social connections, meditation) to build deep resilience and continue to move towards our deepest human potential. 

My take aways from Shawn's talk this week:

1. Potential - when we light up together (ie: shared success) it raises the success rate of everyone (don't go it alone - together is better).
2. Social Connection - is the ONLY predictor of long term happiness - NOT education, skills, traits etc - SOCIAL CONNECTION. This one made me pause, if workplaces of the future are trying to create happier people, why are we still looking at old school resumes to screen potential candidates? If social connection & togetherness are the predictors of happier people, how do we start paying more attention to a person's social ecosystem? And more so, how do we create an environment in the workplace that fosters true connection. 
3. The opposite of happiness is APATHY, when we feel that what we do doesn't matter. This one is a doozy, but it is important to digest and understand. 

I will leave you with one of Shawn's earlier Ted Talks which is a great introduction to his work and research. 
And remember, YOUR happiness, your meaning & your purpose is connected to others. 

Forward by Tess Sloane, Talent Lab

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