The Science of Happiness

The Science of Happiness Podcast

Learn research-tested strategies for a happier, more meaningful life, drawing on the science of compassion, gratitude, mindfulness, and awe. Hosted by award-winning professor Dacher Keltner. Co-produced by PRI and UC Berkeley's Greater Good Science Center.

Can Margaret Cho Get Any Better?
She's one of the most accomplished comedians of her generation. But Margaret Cho wants to find a different kind of happiness....

Can Margaret Cho Get Any Better?
She's one of the most accomplished comedians of her generation. But Margaret Cho wants to find a different kind of happiness....

Can You Humanize a Zombie?
Should we try to find common ground with the villains in our lives? Comedian Zahra Noorbahksh tries to understand a "zombie" from her past....


Making Kindness Contagious
We gave our Happiness Guinea Pig a mission: Do five random acts of kindness in one day....

Facing Your Fears
Heights. Public speaking. Death. Our Happiness Guinea Pig explains how she overcomes her fears, one small step at a time....


How to Keep Love Alive
After more than a decade together, our Happiness Guinea Pig tries to bring the spark back into her marriage....

Who Makes You Feel Connected?
Our Happiness Guinea Pig, the creator of Cartoon Network's We Bare Bears, finds a way to feel close to a loved one he recently lost. Try this week’s happiness practice: Feeling Connected...

A Better Way to Talk to Yourself
Her husband has been in prison for 23 years. Our Happiness Guinea Pig tries a new approach to stay strong while working to get him released....


Happy Again: A Better Way to Say Sorry (Encore)
“I'm sorry you feel that way.” Some apologies can actually make things worse. Our Happiness Guinea Pigs, Jolenta Greenburg and Kristin Meinzer of the By the Book podcast, try a more effective way of saying sorry....

Happy Again: How To Deal With Uncertainty (Encore)
How do you respond when you feel threatened or defensive? Our Happiness Guinea Pig, writer Wajahat Ali, discovers a way to keep himself anchored amidst the challenges and chaos of life....


What to Do When You Feel Like a Failure
The loss of a job, the pain of a breakup -- it's easy to get down on ourselves when things aren't going well. Find out how our Happiness Guinea Pig tuned down the self-critic in her head....

Delight in the Unexpected
A high-five from a stranger, a hummingbird on a busy city street. Poet Ross Gay shares his own happiness practice: savoring the everyday delights in life. ~ Try one of UC Berkeley's Greater Good in Action happiness practices....

How To Let Go of Anger
Are you still mad at someone who hurt you in the past? That can eat away at your health and well-being. Our Happiness Guinea Pig tries a new approach to giving up a grudge....


Do You Know How to Eat a Raisin?
Do you have trouble slowing down enough to actually enjoy your life? Our Happiness Guinea Pig, comedian and radio host Luke Burbank, finds a way to break free from his over-scheduled lifestyle.  Try this week’s happiness practice: Raisin Meditation...

Finding Awe in Every Step
How can we feel connected to the world around us? Singer Diana Gameros tries to cultivate a sense of awe in the most unlikely of places. Try this episode’s happiness practice: Awe Walk...


Finding Your Strengths
Do you fixate on your flaws and shortcomings? Our happiness guinea pig tries the opposite: focusing on her personal strengths. ~ Try this episode’s happiness practice: Use Your Strengths...

Trying Compassion on Capitol Hill
Can you extend compassion toward a difficult person in your life? Congressman Tim Ryan tries a practice to help him reach across the aisle....

A Lesson in Thanks and Vulnerability
A junior high school teacher spent his life defying stereotypes about how men should express their emotions. Here he takes on a new challenge: getting his students to express gratitude....


Notice the Good in Your Life
Comedian Maz Jobrani tries to pay more attention to the good things in his life by writing them down -- and encourages his kids to do the same. Try this episodes happiness practice: Three Good Things...

The Power of Expressing Your Deepest Emotions
He started Afghanistan's first post-Taliban rock band when he was 18 years old. A decade later, our Happiness Guinea Pig takes on another challenge: writing about his emotions....

Who's Got Your Back?
How do you build feelings of trust and security? Our Happiness Guinea Pig learns some truths about what it takes to feel supported....


Being Kinder to Yourself
When you’re helping others cope with stress and anxiety, how do you deal with your own? Psychiatrist Elizabeth Guinto tries a practice to be kinder to herself....

Find That Inner Calm
International megastar Daniel Wu tries a practice that brings him calm amidst the chaos....


These Words Cause Happiness
Did you know that you have the power to spark happiness in someone else's brain with just a few simple words? College student Eva Dickerson shares how she spread happiness across her campus, equipped with just her iPhone and some compliments....

A Simple Recipe for Happiness
Our Happiness Guinea Pig, children's author Joanne Rocklin, shares her happiness practice: bringing people together to share a meal. It took on a deeper meaning for her after a recent tragedy....

Can’t Relax? This Will Help
Why does a bath or swim feel so relaxing? Our guest shares her own happiness practice--spending time in water--which science is finding can make us happier and healthier....


How to Make a Real Apology
"I'm sorry you feel that way." Some apologies can actually make things worse. Our Happiness Guinea Pigs, Jolenta Greenburg and Kristin Meinzer of the By the Book podcast, try a more effective way of saying sorry....

How to Deal with Uncertainty
How do you respond when you feel threatened or defensive? Our Happiness Guinea Pig, writer Wajahat Ali, discovers a way to keep himself centered amidst the challenges and chaos of life....

BONUS: The Science of Happiness at Work
What would make you happier at work? Featuring some of our happiness guinea pigs, we share the latest insights and research on well-being and happiness in the workplace....


What if You Had Never Met?
Do you take your partner for granted? Our Happiness Guinea Pig, cartoonist Gene Luen Yang, imagines a life in which he never met his wife....

Creating Some Distance
Are you stuck ruminating about the past? Legendary skater Tommy Guerrero tries looking at negative events from a different perspective....

Listen Like It's Your First Date
Do you find yourself looking at your phone when you're supposed to be paying attention to a friend? Our Happiness Guinea Pig, The Takeaway's Tanzina Vega trades in her technology for some old school listening....


Why You Shouldn't Hate Small Talk
Many of us avoid chatting with strangers – isn't small talk tedious and dull? Listen as our happiness guinea pig discovers its surprising benefits....

How to Change Your Mind
Author Michael Pollan, shares his experiences on being a guinea pig for his new book, How to Change Your Mind: What the New Science of Psychedelics Teaches Us About Consciousness, Dying, Addiction, Depression, and Transcendence....

How to Find Your Purpose in Life
Did you know what you wanted when you were in high school? Our teen guinea pig takes on the challenge of figuring out her purpose in life....


What Are You Afraid Of?
Would you rather swim with sharks or give a speech before thousands of people? Discover how our happiness guinea pig tackled one of his many fears--and lived to talk about it....

How to Forgive Your Father
Holding on to a grudge? Hear how our happiness guinea pig tried to let go of deep-seated anger and resentment....

Feeling Angry? Try This
For years, Dan Harris of ABC News was plagued by anxiety, depression, and streaks of anger. Here's how he learned to tame the voices in his head and get 10 percent happier....


Let People Help You
In hard times, do you seek comfort from others or turn inwards? Find out how our Happiness Guinea Pig emerged from trauma by accepting others' support.  Thank you for your emails, calls, and letters! We think your stories will inspire others and we’ll be sharing some of them on the show. So call us at (510) 519-4903 and let us know how doing the Feeling Supported practice went for you! Support for this podcast comes from Sun Basket. We all know that every part of our life is enhanced when we eat nourishin...

Is There Someone You Need to Thank?
Is there someone important you've never properly thanked? Award-winning children's book author, Yuyi Morales, discovers the power of writing a "gratitude letter" to the librarian who changed her life....

Can You Predict What Will Make You Happy?
Do memories of your past affect your happiness today? Susannah Cahalan was young and healthy when she was stricken with a mysterious illness. Learn how writing about her “month of madness” in the bestselling book Brain on Fire helped her reclaim her life....


Find Your Best Possible Self
Does imagining your future make you more happy--or more anxious?  Our happiness guinea pig looks ahead for inspiration to improve her life now....

Krista Tippett on Being Grounded in Your Body
Are you so stressed that it wears you down physically as well as mentally? Discover how award-winning radio host Krista Tippett brought relief to her mind and body....


Why a Walk Works Wonders
Do you dwell on the negative and let moments of joy just pass you by? Discover how the Academy Award-winning director of Inside Out got out of his head and savored the good in his life....

3 Funny Things
What should you do when you thought you had it all -- but learn you've had it all wrong? Discover what our happiness guinea pig did to bring more joy and humor into his life....

How to Fall in Love with Anyone
Can 36 questions help you fall in love--and stay in love? Best-selling author Kelly Corrigan tries a research-proven technique to feel closer to her husband. Plus, we learn how the same technique can actually reduce racism and prejudice....


Quieting Your Inner Critic
Are you too hard on yourself? Our Happiness Guinea Pig spent most of his life behind bars. Discover the research-tested practice that helped him quiet his inner critic....

3 Good Things
Do you take the good things in life for granted? You’re not alone, and studies show it's very human. But here’s a way to find more joy in the everyday....

Trailer
Do you know the secrets to happiness? Learn what science has to say on The Science of Happiness, a practical and inspiring new podcast from PRI and UC Berkeley's Greater Good Science Center. Launches February 5!...