Hardwiring Happiness FAQs

What is the book about?

Hardwiring Happiness

Hardwiring Happiness: The New Brain Science of Contentment, Calm, and Confidence is about the hidden power of everyday positive experiences to change your brain for the better. Recent scientific breakthroughs have shown that we can deliberately improve brain structure, a process known as self-directed neuroplasticity. Whatever we repeatedly sense, feel, and believe makes real changes in our neural networks. In my book, you’ll learn a simple, 4-step program that blends neuroscience and practical psychology to rewire the brain, using the HEAL steps – Have, Enrich, Absorb, and Link – to grow greater well-being, relaxation, mindfulness, emotional balance, and feeling appreciated in your brain and your life.

You’ll learn:

  • The HEAL Method, which gets “the good” to stick!
  • Why even on the worst days, there are many micro-moments that can tilt the brain toward the positive, and how to absorb them.
  • Why positive thinking is generally wasted on the brain.
  • How to strengthen your relationships, appreciating and internalizing what is good in them.

The process of taking in the good through the four HEAL steps is at the center of Rick Hanson’s “Taking in the Good” course. In a recent study with collaborators from the University of California, preliminary findings indicate that people who took the course experienced significantly less anxiety and depression, and significantly greater self-control, savoring, love, gratitude, compassion, contentment, joy, self-compassion, and happiness. To view the public summary of the study, go to //www.rickhanson.net/tgc-public-summary.

What makes this book different to your previous books?


My previous books, Buddha’s Brain and Just One Thing, had a few pages each on the practice of “taking in the good.” Hardwiring Happiness has 250 pages of discussion and guided practices about the core steps of the HEAL method (based on taking in the good), which shows how to turn passing experiences into lasting inner strengths and peace. This book also includes special applications for children, relationships, therapy, motivation, and mindfulness.

Can you give an example of the HEAL steps?


I recorded a 10 minute practice – Feeling Cared About – that goes through the HEAL steps in detail. (Also, if you’re interested in the audiobook version that I narrated, this practice will give you a sense of the audiobook experience.) You can listen to the audio here.


Where can I view an excerpt or table of contents?


We’ve made excerpts of the book and the table of contents available on my website. View sample contents here.


What versions are available?


Hardwiring Happiness is available in hardcover, paperback (outside US only), audiobook (CD or download), and numerous eBook formats, including Kindle, iBook, Nook, Google Play, and Books a Million. You can view more information here.


Ordering from abroad


Can I order outside the US?

Yes. We’ve put together a list of links to order online if outside the US. You can view that information here.

Ready to Order?

Great! Just go to the book page to view your ordering options.


Sample audio practices

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