Sonja Lyubomirsky (A.B., summa cum laude, Harvard; PhD, social psychology, Stanford) is Distinguished Professor and Vice Chair of Psychology at the University of California, Riverside and author of The How of Happiness and The Myths of Happiness, translated in 36 countries. Lyubomirsky’s teaching has been recognized with the Faculty of the Year (twice) and Faculty Mentor of the Year Awards. Her research – on the possibility of lastingly increasing happiness via gratitude, kindness, and connection interventions — has received many honors, including the Diener Award for Outstanding Midcareer Contributions in Personality Psychology, the Christopher J. Peterson Gold Medal, the Distinguished Research Lecturer Award, and a Positive Psychology Prize. Lyubomirsky lives in Santa Monica, California, with her family.
April 23rd, 2020 | 31 mins 55 secs
9-11, barbara fredrickson, coronavirus, counting blessings, covid-19, culture, depression, ed diener, effort, emotions, eudaimonic happiness, face-to-face connection, global pandemic, gratitude, happiness, happiness intervention dosage, happiness intervention fit, hedonic happiness, immunity, indebtedness, life satisfaction, lockdown, meaning, mother teresa, motivation, optimism, personal connection, philanthropy, philosophy, positive emotions, psychology, purpose, reasoning, resilience, social science, sonja lyubomirsky, south korea, well being, wisdom
Is happiness research even relevant in such times of crisis, or is focusing on our happiness simply a luxury we can no longer afford? And, while effective for many people, why does the cultivation of gratitude sometimes result in unexpectedly negative consequences? Sonja Lyubomirsky joins Igor and Charles to discuss the key components of happiness, lessons from 9-11, ‘happiness-intervention fit’, Mother Teresa’s dark side, and the unexpected psychological impact of the global pandemic to date. Igor reflects on life-under-lockdown vs life in the downfall of the Soviet Union, Sonja discusses the subtle art of balancing optimism with positive action, and Charles learns that when it comes to counting one’s blessings, it pays not to count too high.