These books will help you understand the science, the business, the philosophy, and even the negative effects, of happiness. This is a “quick list” — a bare list of the best happiness books to read. We chose this pattern to keep this post a quick-reference resource page.
Of these, many are international bestsellers, and while others are not, but they are important books from some great, credible authors.
50 Best Motivational Books On Happiness + Positivity
You will not find most of these on any other “happiness book” lists, as of writing this. We suggest you choose a few from this list and check its review or summary by Googling (here’s a book summary of the book The How of Happiness).
1. Happiness: Unlocking the Mysteries of Psychological Wealth — Ed Diener and Robert Biswas-Diener
2. Transcend: The New Science of Self-Actualization — Scott Barry Kaufman
3. Neurodharma: New Science, Ancient Wisdom, and Seven Practices of the Highest Happiness — Rick Hanson
4. Activating Happiness: A Jump-Start Guide to Overcoming Low Motivation, Depression, or Just Feeling Stuck — Rachel Hershenberg
5. Manufacturing Happy Citizens: How the Science and Industry of Happiness Control our Lives — Edgar Cabanas and Eva Illouz
6. Stoicism And The Art of Happiness: Practical Wisdom for Everyday Life — Donald Robertson
7. Uncovering Happiness: Overcoming Depression with Mindfulness and Self-Compassion — Elisha Goldstein
8. Positivity: Discover The Upward Spiral That Will Change Your Life — Barbara Fredrickson
9. Ten Steps To Finding Happy: A Guide to Permanent Satisfaction — Selene Castrovilla and Lindsay S Weisner
10. Positive Psychology in Practice: Simple Tools to Pursue Happiness and Live Authentically — Gina Delucca and Jamie Goldstein
11. The Book of Joy: Lasting Happiness in a Changing World — Dalai Lama, Desmond Tutu, and Douglas Carlton Abrams
12. The Algebra of Happiness: Notes on the Pursuit of Success, Love, and Meaning — Scott Galloway
13. The Little Book of Hygge: Danish Secrets to Happy Living — Meik Wiking
15. NeuroWisdom: The New Brain Science of Money, Happiness, and Success – Mark Robert Waldman and Chris Manning
16. The Happiness Track: How to Apply the Science of Happiness to Accelerate Your Success – Emma Seppala
17. The Future of Happiness: 5 Modern Strategies for Balancing Productivity and Well-Being in the Digital Era — Amy Blankson
18. Thrive: Self-Coaching for Happiness & Success (Positive Psychology & The Keys to Sustainable Happiness) — Laura Delizonna and Ted Anstedt
19. Can We Be Happier?: Evidence and Ethics — Richard Layard
20. The Atlas of Happiness: The Global Secrets of How to Be Happy — Helen Russell
21. The Happiness Industry: How the Government and Big Business Sold us Well-Being – William Davies
22. Emotional Agility: Get Unstuck, Embrace Change and Thrive in Work and Life – Susan David
23. Happy Ever After: A Radical New Approach to Living Well — Paul Dolan
24. Designing Your Work Life: How to Thrive and Change and Find Happiness at Work – Bill Burnett and Dave Evans
25. Altruism: The Power of Compassion to Change Yourself and the World — Matthieu Ricard
26. StrengthsFinder 2.0: Discover Your Clifton Strengths — From Gallup and Tom Rath
27. The Science of Happiness: How Our Brains Make Us Happy And What We Can Do to Get Happier — Stefan Klein
28. The Happiness Hypothesis: Finding Modern Truth in Ancient Wisdom — Jonathan Haidt
29. Happiness Now!: Timeless Wisdom for Feeling Good Fast — Robert Holden
30. Thanks!: How Practicing Gratitude Can Make You Happier – Robert Emmons
31. Capitalism of Happiness: Introducing a New Economic World Order that Puts Happiness at Its Core — Axel Bouchon
32. A Practical Guide to Happiness: Think Deeply and Flourish — Will Buckingham
33. 10 Keys To Happier Living: A Practical Handbook For Happiness — Vanessa King
34. Happier: Learn the Secrets to Daily Joy and Lasting Fulfillment — Tal Ben-Shahar
35. The Happiness Trap: How to Stop Struggling and Start Living: A Guide to ACT — Russ Harris and Steven Hayes
36. The Myths of Happiness: What Should Make You Happy, But Doesn’t, What Shouldn’t Make You Happy, But Does — Sonja Lyubomirsky
37. Happy Brain: Where Happiness Comes From, and Why – Dean Burnett
38. Hardwiring Happiness: The New Brain Science of Contentment, Calm, and Confidence — Rick Hanson
39. The Happiness Advantage: How A Positive Brain Fuels Success in Work and Life — Shawn Achor
40. The Power of Negative Emotion: How Anger, Guilt, and Self Doubt are Essential to Success and Fulfillment – Todd Kashdan and Robert Biswas-Diener
41. Happiness for Dummies — W. Doyle Gentry
42. Man’s Search for Meaning – Viktor E. Frankl
43. The Power of Meaning: Finding Fulfillment in A World Obsessed with Happiness — Emily Esfahani Smith
44. Authentic Happiness: Using the New Positive Psychology to Realize Your Potential for Lasting Fulfillment — Martin Seligman
45. Real Happiness: A 28-Day Program to Realize the Power of Meditation – Sharon Salzberg
46. Positive Psychology: A Toolkit for Happiness, Purpose and Well-being – Bridget Grenville-Cleave
47. Oxford Handbook of Happiness — Susan David, Ilona Boniwell, Amanda Conley Ayers
48. The Human Quest for Meaning: Theories, Research, and Applications — Paul T. P. Wong (Editor)
49. The Psychology of Happiness — Michael Argyle
50. Stumbling On Happiness — Daniel Gilbert
We took time to find out and include many of the most recent books on happiness and wellbeing. The links that appear here go to the relevant paperback/hardcover page on the Amazon store.
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Success doesn’t come with a promise of happiness – many suuceesful people are unhappy.
When your reason to be happy is tied to success, you never find the happiness you seek.
Why does it happen? And how to fix it?
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Author Bio: Written and reviewed by Sandip Roy—a medical doctor, psychology writer, happiness researcher. Founder and chief editor of The Happiness Blog. Writes popular science articles on happiness, positive psychology, and related topics.
• We are Happiness Project.
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