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Hardwiring happiness

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Hardwiring happiness

Happiness is not something ready made. It comes from your own actions. — Dalai Lama

  • Lifetime
  • Hard



A science-backed book to rewire your brain to be happy.

Neuropsychologist Dr Rick Hanson shows how we can rewire our brain to be happy. Using the hidden power of everyday experiences, this book offers a simple method to cultivate happiness, love, confidence, and peace. It builds on a four-step process called HEAL, which strengthens your brain to spend more time in responsive mode (e.g. calm and happy), rather than in reactive mode (e.g. distressed and worried). Below you find a summary of the HEAL process, but please consider reading the book to receive a step-by-step guide and a series of practices to rewire your brain.

Watch Rick Hansons’s TEDx talk on “Hardwiring Happiness”.



H = Have a positive experience

The first step of the HEAL process is to have a positive experience. You can focus on a positive experience that is already present in your awareness, or create a positive experience for your self. It is important that you do your best to turn these ideas into emotionally rewarding experiences.


E = Enrich it

The second step of the HEAL process is to enrich the positive experience. Try to stay with the positive experience for at least 5-10 seconds. Sense it through your body, as well as your mind. Enjoy being in this positive experience. Increase its intensity so that the neurons in your brain can fire and wire together.


A = Absorb it

The third step of the HEAL process is to absorb the positive experience. Let the positive experience sink in your body as you sink in the experience itself. Feel the experience becoming part of you, a powerful resource you carry within yourself.


L = Link it

The fourth (optional) step of the HEAL process is to link the positive experience to a negative one. Whilst maintaining the positive experience in the foreground of your awareness, slowly become aware of something negative in the background. Whenever the negative experience tries to take over, drop it and focus back on the positive experience. Slowly start uprooting the negative material by focusing on positive or neutral material.

Greta Rossi

Chief Empathy Officer at Akasha Innovation. Co-founder of ImpactAimers and Recipes for Wellbeing. Regional Coordinator for Ashoka's ChangemakerXchange. Youth coach and FRSA.

Unlimited empathy
A welcome thought