4 min read ⌚
You are probably a smart person.
But that is not the same as being a happy person.
Do not worry; you are not alone.
Who Should Read “If You’re So Smart, Why Aren’t You Happy?” and Why?
“If You’re So Smart, Why Aren’t You Happy?” is a book about making happiness your priority. It offers useful tips that you can use immediately, to create a much happier life.
We recommend it to all readers since we believe that everyone deserves and should be happy.
About Raj Raghunathan
Raj Raghunathan is a writer, editor at the Journal of Consumer Psychology and teaches marketing at McCombs School of Business at the University of Texas, Austin.
“If You’re So Smart, Why Aren’t You Happy? Summary”
Many smart people are not entirely happy.
And it all has to do with the seven deadly sins.
No, we are not talking about the deadly sins you know about from the Bible, but about the seven bad habits that are stopping you from being happy.
The first bad habit is devaluing happiness.
Yes! People like to be happy, and yet they consistently fail to give happiness the attention and priority it deserves.
If you ask people to list their wishes, they will probably ask for more money, possessions, or love.
But think about it. Why do we want all of those things?
Because we think they will make us happy, of course.
Happiness is the final goal of everything we do, but we fail to recognize it and do not make it our top priority.
If you can prioritize happiness, then everything will be much better,
But to do that, you have first to be able to define it.
Everyone’s definition of happiness is different, though, so we cannot tell you what happiness is for you. You have to do the work yourself.
You can find your definition of happiness by thinking about the feelings you associate with it.
Is it love? Is it health?
Whatever it is, it is central to your wellbeing.
So, create a journal and write down all of those little moments that bring happiness to your experience.
Once you do, you will have a more clear picture of what makes you feel happy, and you will be able to bring more similar moments and events in your life.
The second sin is chasing superiority. As we already said, money is not what makes you happy – many other things may be the source of happiness, depending on the person.
And so you have to understand that the feeling of superiority will not bring you happiness as well. In fact, it will make you miserable.
Because in order to be superior, you have to measure yourself with those that surround you.
And there will always be someone who can perform better, so you will most likely at some point in life feel like you are not enough.
Instead of comparing yourself to others, pursue your very own flow.
What is flow?
It is an activity that will allow you to completely immerse yourself in it.
The third deadly sin is the desperate need for love.
All desires are healthy up to a point, and so is the need for love. Desperation for intimacy will result in neediness and insecurity.
Neediness and desperation are far from attractive, so the more desperately you seek for love, the bigger the chance that you will end up lonely.
The fourth deadly sin is needing to have too much control.
Having control over your environment and the people that surround you is impossible. That is why wanting to control everything will always ultimately lead you to feel unhappy.
The only control you can exercise is that of yourself and your inner world, so make sure you get it in order.
The fifth deadly sin is the distrust you show to other people.
You need to stop worrying that you will be let down and betrayed by others. The only way you can survive in society is by living in a group.
Stop distrusting, it will only fill you up with worries, and will never allow you to enjoy a connection to another human being.
Instead, be understanding and forgiving, even to those who did let you down in some way. Do not let yourself draw general conclusions based on an unlucky few instances.
The sixth deadly sin is being either too passionate or too indifferent about what happens in your life.
As we already said, the key to a happy life is learning to find balance.
Finally, the last sin is mind addiction, or what you may know otherwise as overthinking.
Overthinking blocks our intuition, and does not allow us to connect with our instincts.
To prevent yourself from overthinking, practice mindfulness.
The easiest way to practice mindfulness is through a focus on your breathing.
It may sound too simple, but the focus on breath does wonders.
Key Lessons from “If You’re So Smart, Why Aren’t You Happy?”
1. Make Happiness Your Priority
2. Define Happiness
3. Too Much of Anything is a Bad Thing
Make Happiness Your Priority
Whenever you set goals, instead of striving to get material things that you think will make you happy, make happiness your top priority.
No one can define happiness for you, so think hard what emotions you connect to the feeling of happiness, and find the events that create such emotions. Then, make sure you experience such events as much as you can.
Too Much of Anything is a Bad Thing
Too much of anything is bad, and the same goes for passion. If you are too passionate, you will become inflexible. However, be careful not to be indifferent as well. Find the balance in whatever you do.
Like this summary? We’d Like to invite you to download our free 12 min app, for more amazing summaries and audiobooks.
“If You’re So Smart, Why Aren’t You Happy? Quotes”It is precisely because we tell our children what to value—money, value for money, status, beauty, power, etc.—that they learn to lose sight of what makes them truly happy. Click To Tweet It is precisely because past negative events become more positive in our memory that women agree to go through a second childbirth and authors agree to write a second book. Click To Tweet Devaluing happiness is because of medium maximization—the tendency to focus on the means to happiness, rather happiness itself. Click To Tweet
Our Critical Review
“If You’re So Smart, Why Aren’t You Happy?” is a practical guide that goes straight to the point of what makes you happy and what doesn’t. It is thoroughly enjoyable.
Learn more and more, in the speed that the world demands.