Skip navigation
The How of Happiness

Narrator: Are you a happy person? This is Science Today. Research indicates that fifty percent of our happiness is genetically determined; ten percent is influenced by life circumstances, such as wealth; and the remaining forty percent is within our power to control. Psychologist Sonja Lyubomirsky of the University of California, Riverside has outlined her years of research in a new book, ‘The How of Happiness: A Scientific Approach to Getting the Life You Want'.

Lyubomirsky: What I do in the book is discuss twelve happiness strategies or activities that have scientific support. It's very important to talk about happiness strategies that actually are based in empirical research.

Narrator: These happiness strategies include expressing gratitude, practicing optimism and acts of kindness and savoring events that we all soon adapt to - such as a new house or a relationship.

Lyubomirsky: In the book I have a section for every happiness strategy and in addition to mentioning all the research that supports it and how does it work and why does it work, but also have specific recommendations for how people can practice each strategy.

Narrator: For Science Today, I'm Larissa Branin.