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The Happiness Lab with Dr. Laurie Santos

by Pushkin Industries

You might think you know what it takes to lead a happier life… more money, a better job, or Instagram-worthy vacations. You’re dead wrong. Yale professor Dr. Laurie Santos has studied the science of happiness and found that many of us do the exact opposite of what will truly make our lives better. Based on the psychology course she teaches at Yale -- the most popular class in the university’s 300-year history -- Laurie will take you through the latest scientific research and share some surprising and inspiring stories that will change the way you think about happiness.

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Episodes

A Supercommunicator's Guide to Love and Dating

51m · Published 26 Feb 05:01

Some people ask searching questions and then really listen to the replies. These so-called supercommunicators make great romantic partners, so can anyone learn to be more like them?

Journalist Charles Duhigg (author of Supercommunicators: How to Unlock the Secret Language of Connection) was unhappy with how he and his wife were talking, so he studied his mistakes and adopted the habits of supercommunicators. He explains to Dr Laurie Santos how we can all make small changes that will improve our dating and romantic lives.

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Can Couples Learn to Argue Better?

34m · Published 19 Feb 05:01

No matter how much you love your partner, your relationship will never be totally free from disagreement. And nor should it be, say researchers Dr John Gottman and Dr Julie Schwartz Gottman. We actually just need to learn to argue better.

The Gottmans join Dr Laurie Santos to talk us through how to raise complaints with our partners and how to react when they complain about us.

Further reading: Fight Right: How Successful Couples Turn Conflict into Connection by Dr John Gottman and Dr Julie Schwartz Gottman.

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Love Lessons from the "Masters of Relationships"

45m · Published 12 Feb 05:01

Some people are just good at building and maintaining healthy partnerships. In their 'Love Lab", the married researchers Dr John Gottman and Dr Julie Schwartz Gottman have seen how certain couples interact in ways that mean they'll happily stick together for decades.

The Gottmans join Dr Laurie Santos to explain what we can learn from these "Masters of Relationships" - so that the stresses and strains of life don't destroy our intimate partnerships.

Further reading: Fight Right: How Successful Couples Turn Conflict into Connection by Dr John Gottman and Dr Julie Schwartz Gottman.

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The Sweet Smell of Happiness

51m · Published 05 Feb 05:01

Does happiness have a scent? Dr Laurie has been trying to remove the bad smells in her life and bring in more fragrances that enhance her wellbeing. But she's noticed that some of the smells that bring her joy can being a little weird - like musty books and rotting seaweed.

So what's going on in noses and brains? Laurie turned to neuroscientist Dr Rachel Herz (author of The Scent of Desire) to explain why we respond to certain smells and how we can use scent to reduce stress, boost our happiness, make us perform better and even to find the perfect mate.

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How Getting Active Can Make You Happier

20m · Published 15 Jan 05:01

Busy scientist Adam Aron had too much on his plate to think deeply about climate change - until he read a scary report about what lay in store for the planet if no one acted to cut greenhouse gases.

So Adam did more and more to fight climate change, until activism became his full time occupation. And the move made him happier and more content. We can't all give up our normal lives to stop global heating - but even making small contributions to the cause can make us feel more connected, more fulfilled and happier.

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Being Green Doesn't Mean Sacrificing Fun... or Cutting Out Meat

27m · Published 08 Jan 05:01

We often think of fighting climate change as a drain on our happiness - it'll mean sacrificing the things we love, like air travel or eating hamburgers. But researchers Jiaying Zhao and Liz Dunn have pioneered the idea of "Happy Climate" that shows us ways in which doing good for the planet can make us feel great.

Changing how we fly, drive, shop and eat in very small ways can make us enjoy our travel, our friends, our wardrobes and, yes, even our steaks, more than ever before.

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Why our Brains Don't Fear Climate Change Enough

37m · Published 02 Jan 05:01

Humans are great at reacting to mortal danger... but only sometimes. Unfortunately, some risks to our safety and wellbeing don't set off alarm bells in our brains. Climate change falls into that category. Why is that?

Harvard psychologist Dan Gilbert explains how some dangers trigger us, and some don't. In discussion with Dr Laurie Santos, he also outlines ways in which we can be made to care more about threats to the planet and maybe react to them in more positive, happiness-inducing ways.

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When Stalin Killed the Weekend - A Happiness Lab/Cautionary Tales Crossover

36m · Published 18 Dec 05:01

Time off work is vital for your happiness. So what would you do if you couldn't take the same rest day as your family and friends? Would you quit your job? What if it was the murderous dictator Stalin giving you the order?

The Soviet Union wanted its factories to run every day, so workers were stopped from taking the same day off - killing the weekend as we know it. In a crossover between The Happiness Lab and Cautionary Tales, Dr Laurie Santos and Tim Harford discuss the pros and cons of everyone downing tools together and why holidays matter so very much.

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Build The Life You Want from Oprah's Super Soul

54m · Published 15 Dec 05:01

Enjoy this episode of another show you might like: the Build the Life You Want Super Soul Podcast. Oprah and Arthur Brooks offer listeners a better understanding of the science behind happiness and why Arthur says, “Happiness is not a destination, happiness is a direction.” Together, they take questions from people across the country who have read Build the Life You Want and are curious how to apply topics from the book to their own lives. They discuss the “The Four Pillars of Happiness: Faith, Family, Friends and Work that Serves” as well as the power of metacognition which Oprah calls “one of the biggest contributions to people getting happier.” Arthur Brooks explains how using “emotional caffeine” can lead to greater happiness and how having “a better storage of emotions” can block anxiety and depression.

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Is There a Gen Z Happiness Crisis? Dr Laurie Meets the US Surgeon General

35m · Published 11 Dec 05:01

Have we created a culture where young people prioritize good grades, social media likes and constant hustling over the important wellbeing pillars of sleep, friendships and free time?

Dr Laurie Santos joins the US Surgeon General on his podcastHouse Calls with Dr. Vivek Murthy to ask how we got here and what Gen Z can do to get out of this happiness crisis.

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The Happiness Lab with Dr. Laurie Santos has 151 episodes in total of non- explicit content. Total playtime is 81:06:24. The language of the podcast is English. This podcast has been added on February 22nd 2023. It might contain more episodes than the ones shown here. It was last updated on February 28th, 2024 18:42.

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