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The Science of Well-Being

Coursera · Yale University · 5 HN comments

HN Academy has aggregated all Hacker News stories and comments that mention Coursera's "The Science of Well-Being" from Yale University.
Course Description
In this course you will engage in a series of challenges designed to increase your own happiness and build more productive habits. As preparation for these tasks, Professor Laurie Santos ...
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This course is offered by Yale University on the Coursera platform.
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I'm currently in week 4 of the most popular course in Yale [0], but was made available online on Coursera[1].

I think for the most part I've learnt I've learnt that much of what we think about happiness is consistently shown not to work. And that many of our expectations of what we think will make us happy, simply won't. If we want genuine happiness, it takes an honest self-assessment of what we're doing, what's stopping us from being happy and what would be the best way to map the parts of our life we can control to actually make us happy.

Anyway, the course seems well respected and highly recommended [2]. But I hope you're doing ok, and whatever you choose to do next, you find what you're looking for. Best of luck.

[0] https://www.inc.com/betsy-mikel/yale-let-anyone-take-its-mos...

[1] https://www.coursera.org/learn/the-science-of-well-being

[2] https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=19903628

mettamage
I wish I had the time to watch this. What are the biggest ideas that you've learned?
Highly reccomend this course. Free on coursera

The Science of Well-Being https://www.coursera.org/learn/the-science-of-well-being

In this course you will engage in a series of challenges designed to increase your own happiness and build more productive habits. As preparation for these tasks, Professor Laurie Santos reveals misconceptions about happiness, annoying features of the mind that lead us to think the way we do, and the research that can help us change. You will ultimately be prepared to successfully incorporate a specific wellness activity into your life.

The class starts today if anyone is interested in enrolling: https://www.coursera.org/learn/the-science-of-well-being
Going to recommend the most widely taken course at Yale at the moment, which fortunately is now available as a MOOC on coursera, "The Science of Well Being": https://www.coursera.org/learn/the-science-of-well-being

This is a positive psychology course based on work by Seligman et al.

flexie
https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2017/feb/07/positi...
mattnewport
Would this be Seligman of "none of my positive psychology results replicate" fame?
Dowwie
Does this mean you're not signing up for the course? :D
colechristensen
Could you provide more information or sources about that?
barry-cotter
Do Positive Psychology Exercises Work? A Replication of Seligman et al. (2005)

Results: Repeated measures analyses showed that the PPEs led to lasting increases in happiness, as did the positive placebo. The PPEs did not exceed the control condition in producing changes in depression over time.

Conclusions: Brief, positive psychology interventions may boost happiness through a common factor involving the activation of positive, self-relevant information rather than through other specific mechanisms. Finally, the effects of PPEs on depression may be more modest than previously assumed.

https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Myriam_Mongrain/publica...

mattnewport
My point exactly.
None
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edraferi
Thanks for the link. The four treatment conditions look REALLY similar to me (see pages 384-285). They're all exercises that make you think about good things in your life:

Expectancy control (early memories): “[...]Every night over the next week, set aside about 10 minutes before bed [...] to log on to this website to write about an early memory.”

Positive placebo (positive early memories, in addition to rationale above): “[...] Every night over the next week, set aside about 10 minutes before bed [...] to log on to this website to write about an early positive memory.”

Three good things (Seligman et al., 2005): “[...] log on to the website daily for seven days to list three things that went well on that day and why they happened.”

Using signature strengths in a new way (Seligman et al., 2005): “This exercise consists of two parts. You will take a questionnaire that gives you feedback about your strengths. This will take about 45 minutes. The next day you will be asked to use these strengths in new ways every day for one week [...]”

So regardless of whether the specific exercises are uniquely useful, it seems like it's valuable to make yourself focus on the positive stuff.

I just listened to a podcast with Laurie Santos, all about her course on happiness research, which quickly became the most popular course ever taught at Yale. https://verybadwizards.fireside.fm/136

A shortened version of the course is available on Coursera: https://www.coursera.org/learn/the-science-of-well-being

It's surprising how much the research validates things we all intuitively know or suspect about happiness, but routinely fail to put into practice. Exercise. Sleep. Mindfulness. Human interactions. Have some free time. "Avoid news" seems like it might fit too.

ragequitta
Thanks for this. Watched the course intro and I'm definitely enrolling for April 9th.
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