Tag: positive psychology

The Hedonic Treadmill

By Christian Staal

Most people assume that getting what we want (promotions, romance, world domination) will bring us happiness. But in most cases the effect is short-lived. This is because of The Hedonic Treadmill: Humans rapidly adapt to new circumstances, and therefore take things for granted, once we have them. The bright side is, that this same mechanism protects us, when something bad happens.

Hedonic treadmill (Wikipedia)
Reprieve (essay) by Tim Kreider
For a different perspective: read the chapter on happiness in Enlightenment Now by Steven Pinker

Replacing Negativity With Gratitude

By Christian Staal

When something annoys you, find something to be grateful for. If you have an argument with your partner, be grateful for the relationship itself. If something frustrates you at work, be grateful that you have a job. Too often, we get upset by small things. Gratitude gives us perspective.


James Altucher on CreativeLive (interview) by Chase Jarvis

The Power of Gratitude (puzzle.blog post) 

The Power of Gratitude

By Christian Staal

It often feels like happiness is waiting right around the corner (“If only I get that promotion”). However, if you can’t be happy with what you have, you won’t be happy with what you get. Gratitude can boost your happiness. Here’s a scientifically proven exercise you might enjoy: The next few weeks, pick a day, and write down three things you’re grateful for (aim for new things every week).


The How of Happiness (book) Sonja Lyubomirsky, p. 88-91.

Academic articles:

  • R.A. Emmons og M.E. McCullough, “Counting Blessings Versus Burdens: An Experimental Investigation of Gratitude and Subjective Well- Being,” Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 2003, 84, 377–389.
  • M.E. McCullough, S.D. Kilpatrick, R.A. Emmons, og D.B. Larson, “Is Gratitude a Moral Affect?” Psychological Bulletin, 2001, 127, 249–266
  • R.A. Emmons og C.A. Crumpler, “Gratitude as a Human Strength: Appraising the Evi- dence,” Journal of Social and Clinical Psychology, 2000, 19, 56–69

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