Keys to Happiness – Taking the Secret Steps Towards Contentment

Hi! My name is John Schinnerer, Ph.D. I have spent the past 20 years seeking the best, proven tools to turn UP the volume on happiness along with ways to turn DOWN the volume on negative emotions. All this leads to greater happiness and much more success.Studies have shown that success follows happiness, NOT the other way around. People LIKE to be around folks who are happy. They flock to them. Then, happy people are provided with more opportunities – in business, in relationships, and in wealth.

It’s a simple fact – most people want to hang out with happier, upbeat people.

The best part is that happiness is a learnable skill! I’ve done it myself (despite my depression and social anxiety). I’ve taught it to thousands of people.

If you would like to be happier, I’m offering my award-winning book on happiness “Guide to Self” for FREE in pdf format. Just visit my site at In exchange for your name and email, I will grant you instant access to the eBook! No catch. No obligation.Take the plunge! You’ll be happy you did!

In friendship,


John Schinnerer, Ph.D. is in private practice teaching men anger management & the latest ways to deal with destructive negative emotions. He also helps men discover happier, more meaningful lives. His Ph.D. is from U.C. Berkeley. John is Founder of Guide To Self, a company that coaches men to happiness and success. He wrote the award-winning, “Guide To Self: The Beginner’s Guide To Managing Emotion and Thought” and his blog, Shrunken Mind, was named top 3 in positive psychology ( me on Twitter at
Check out my new video blog on Real Men, Real Happiness at
YouTube Channel at

University of Leicester produces the first-ever ‘world map of happiness’

Happiness is … being healthy, wealthy and wise

Adrian White, Analytic Social Psychologist at the University of Leicester produces first ever global projection of international differences in subjective well-being; the first ever World Map of Happiness.

UK 41st out of 178 countries for happiness.

Happiness is found to be most closely associated with health, followed by wealth and then education.

A University of Leicester psychologist has produced the first ever ‘world map of happiness.’

Adrian White, an analytic social psychologist at the University’s School of Psychology, analysed data published by UNESCO, the CIA, the New Economics Foundation, the WHO, the Veenhoven Database, the Latinbarometer, the Afrobarometer, and the UNHDR, to create a global projection of subjective well-being: the first world map of happiness.

The projection, which is to be published in a psychology journal this September, will be presented at a conference later in the year. Participants in the various studies were asked questions related to happiness and satisfaction with life. The meta-analysis is based on the findings of over 100 different studies around the world, which questioned 80,000 people worldwide. For this study data has also been analysed in relation to health, wealth and access to education.

Whilst collecting data on subjective well-being is not an exact science, the measures used are very reliable in predicting health and welfare outcomes. It can be argued that whilst these measures are not perfect they are the best we have so far, and these are the measures that politicians are talking of using to measure the relative performance of each country.

The researchers have argued that regular testing as a collaboration between academics in different countries would enable us to track changes in happiness, and what events may cause that. For example what effect would a war, or famine, or national success have on a country’s members’ happiness. .

Adrian White said: “The concept of happiness, or satisfaction with life, is currently a major area of research in economics and psychology, most closely associated with new developments in positive psychology. It has also become a feature in the current political discourse in the UK.

“There is increasing political interest in using measures of happiness as a national indicator in conjunction with measures of wealth. A recent BBC survey found that 81% of the population think the Government should focus on making us happier rather than wealthier.

“It is worth remembering that the UK is doing relatively well in this area, coming 41st out of 178 nations.

“Further analysis showed that a nation’s level of happiness was most closely associated with health levels (correlation of .62), followed by wealth (.52), and then provision of education (.51).

“The three predictor variables of health, wealth and education were also very closely associated with each other, illustrating the interdependence of these factors.

“There is a belief that capitalism leads to unhappy people. However, when people are asked if they are happy with their lives, people in countries with good healthcare, a higher GDP per captia, and access to education were much more likely to report being happy.

“We were surprised to see countries in Asia scoring so low, with China 82nd, Japan 90th and India 125th. These are countries that are thought as having a strong sense of collective identity which other researchers have associated with well-being.

“It is also notable that many of the largest countries in terms of population do quite badly. With China 82nd, India 125th and Russia 167th it is interesting to note that larger populations are not associated with happy countries.”

“The frustrations of modern life, and the anxieties of the age, seem to be much less significant compared to the health, financial and educational needs in other parts of the World. The current concern with happiness levels in the UK may well be a case of the ‘worried well’.”

The 20 happiest nations in the World are:

1. Denmark 
2. Switzerland 
3. Austria 
4. Iceland 
5. The Bahamas 
6. Finland 
7. Sweden 
8. Bhutan 
9. Brunei 
10. Canada 
11. Ireland 
12. Luxembourg 
13. Costa Rica 
14. Malta 
15. The Netherlands 
16. Antigua and Barbuda 
17. Malaysia 
18. New Zealand 
19. Norway 
20. The Seychelles

Other notable results include:

23. USA 
35. Germany 
41. UK 
62. France 
82. China 
90. Japan 
125. India 
167. Russia

The three least happy countries were:

176. Democratic Republic of the Congo 
177. Zimbabwe 
178. Burundi



To view an interactive version of the map, download a .EPS format for publication, or to view extra information visit: High Definition Formats are available from University of Leicester press office: email

Use of the map is subject to the credit line “Adrian White, Analytic Social Psychologist, University of Leicester. The data used to construct the map were extracted from a meta-analysis published by the New Economics Foundation (Marks, N. et al. (2006). The Happy Planet Index. London: New Economics Foundation).”

 From EurekAlert!

Does Money Buy Happiness? 136,000 People Can’t Be Wrong – New Gallup Study


‘ScienceDaily (July 2, 2010) — A worldwide survey of more than 136,000 people in 132 countries included questions about happiness and income, and the results reveal that while life satisfaction usually rises with income, positive feelings don’t necessarily follow, researchers report.

The findings, from an analysis of data gathered in the first Gallup World Poll, appear this month in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology.

“The public always wonders: Does money make you happy?” said University of Illinois professor emeritus of psychology Ed Diener, a senior scientist with the Gallup Organization. “This study shows that it all depends on how you define happiness, because if you look at life satisfaction, how you evaluate your life as a whole, you see a pretty strong correlation around the world between income and happiness,” he said. “On the other hand it’s pretty shocking how small the correlation is with positive feelings and enjoying yourself.”


The countries surveyed represent about 96 percent of the world’s population, the researchers report, and reflect the diversity of cultural, economic and political realities around the globe.

This “first representative sample of planet earth,” the authors wrote, “was used to explore the reasons why ‘happiness’ is associated with higher income.” The researchers were able to look at a long list of attributes of respondents, including their income and standard of living, whether their basic needs for food and shelter were met, what kinds of conveniences they owned and whether they felt their psychological needs were satisfied.

The surveys included a global life evaluation, which asked respondents to rate their lives on a scale that ranged from zero (worst possible life) to 10 (best possible life). Participants also answered questions about positive or negative emotions experienced the previous day. And the poll asked respondents whether they felt respected, whether they had family and friends they could count on in an emergency, and how free they felt to choose their daily activities, learn new things or do “what one does best.”

Like previous studies, the new analysis found that life evaluation, or life satisfaction, rises with personal and national income. But positive feelings, which also increase somewhat as income rises, are much more strongly associated with other factors, such as feeling respected, having autonomy and social support, and working at a fulfilling job.

This is the first “happiness” study of the world to differentiate between life satisfaction, the philosophical belief that your life is going well, and the day-to-day positive or negative feelings that one experiences, Diener said.

“Everybody has been looking at just life satisfaction and income,” he said. “And while it is true that getting richer will make you more satisfied with your life, it may not have the big impact we thought on enjoying life.”

Journal Reference:
1. Ed Diener, Weiting Ng, James Harter, Raksha Arora. Wealth and happiness across the world: Material prosperity predicts life evaluation, whereas psychosocial prosperity predicts positive feeling.. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 2010; 99 (1): 52 DOI: 10.1037/a0018066′

Enjoy the long weekend!

John Schinnerer, Ph.D.

Positive Psychology Coach

Guide To Self, Inc.

P.S.   I’m kicking off the launch of my new video blog at And to make the announcement more fun and rewarding for everyone, I’m giving away a FREE copy of my book Guide To Self: The Beginner’s Guide To Managing Emotion and Thought.

It’s all about how to quiet the voices in your head, turn down the volume on negative emotions and turn up the volume on positive emotions and happiness, click here for instant access!

The Top Five Secrets To Your Well-Being and Success

By John Schinnerer, Ph.D.

Guide To Self, Inc.

Almost everyone includes happiness, well-being and success at the top when it comes to lifetime goals. Everyone wants well-being, but few know how to develop it. Recently, Deepak Chopra, a Senior Scientist at the Gallup Organization, presented results of a fantastic new study that reveals the commonalities among people who are in the top 10% of well-being, success and happiness. The study looked at individuals across the globe to eliminate any cross cultural confusion. Findings indicate that the more satisfied you are in each of these key areas, the better your life will be.

Five Secrets to Incredible Well-Being

1. Accomplishment 
Career. To what extent do you love your work? Does your job give you the
opportunity to use your strengths on a daily basis? A mere 20% of the workforce
reports being happy with their job. To increase your career well-being, identify
what your strengths are using a tool such as the Realise-2 or Gallup’s Strengths
Finder. Then, mindfully, do a task each day which relies on one of your top
strengths. Also, start to use a vocabulary of strengths (instead of weaknesses)
within your workplace.
b. Financial. While money doesn’t necessarily buy happiness, it does help. It is
particularly helpful to eliminate the chronic stress of debt. Living debt free
is helpful in increasing your financial well-being. If you are not currently
debt free, make it a goal to become so. The other piece to financial well-being
is the understanding that spending your money on experiences (e.g., movies,
skiing, amusement park) is more satisfying than spending money on material goods
(e.g., new TV, sofa, clothes, etc.).

2. Physical. You only have one body in this lifetime. Are you taking good care
of yours? Studies show that individuals who exercise more than 20 minutes per
day, sleep at least 7 hours per night, and eat healthy foods that are naturally
colorful have higher levels of well-being.

3. Manage Your Mind. This topic is a book unto itself. However, in a nutshell,
you must learn the advanced training techniques for your mind. There are over
70,000 studies that have been released in the past 10 years demonstrating
scientifically proven methods to manage the mind. For example, mental well-being
is a result of learning to turn down the volume on negative emotions (e.g.,
anxiety, sadness, anger) and turning up the volume on positive emotions (e.g.,
awe, curiosity, amusement, pride, interest, etc.). There is also the critical
matter of learning to identify and challenge destructive thoughts (e.g.,
disputing catastrophic thinking) as well as ways to cultivate more frequent
constructive thoughts (e.g., realistic optimism a la Martin Seligman).

4. Relationships.   Think about the friends with whom you hang out. How many of
them would you describe as happy and optimistic? How many of them would you
describe as pessimistic, irritable or anxious? Recent studies have shown that
emotions are contagious so you can ‘catch’ emotions from other people around
you. What’s more, those individuals with a social network of happy folks tend to
be happier themselves. Look for individuals that tend to radiate contentment and
curiosity to grow your group of friends. This will improve your relational

5. Community. Who around you shares passions similar to yours? Sharing strengths
and passions are a tremendously powerful way to ramp up your community
well-being. This may be as simple as volunteering to clean up a beach, joining a
running group, training with a team for a marathon, attending a book club or a
knitting class. Spending time with people who share your passions amplify your
well-being and send you into an upward spiral of positive emotions and thoughts.

The benefits of being aware of and increasing the level of your well-being are
tremendous: longer life span, more success at work, improved quality of
relationships at home, increased productivity and more. Take a chance. You’ll be
happy you did!

To book Dr. John for a speaking engagement, coaching or training, call now.
(925) 944-3440. Or visit the website at

About the Author

Dr. John Schinnerer holds a Ph.D. in educational psychology from U.C. Berkeley.
Dr. Schinnerer has been an executive, speaker and psychologist for over 12
years. Dr. John Schinnerer is Founder of Guide To Self, a company that coaches
executives to well-being and success. Dr. John Schinnerer hosted over 200
episodes of Guide To Self Radio, a daily prime time radio show, in the SF Bay
Area. Dr. Schinnerer wrote the award-winning, “Guide To Self: The Beginner’s
Guide To Managing Emotion and Thought,” which is available at His
blog, Shrunken Mind, was recently recognized as #1 in positive psychology on the
web by PostRank ( and as one of the Top 100
blogs on the web by The Daily Reviewer. Dr. Schinnerer’s areas of expertise
range from positive psychology, to emotional awareness, to anger management, to
executive coaching. His offices are in Danville, California.

The Four Pillars of Positive Psychology per Martin Seligman and Dalai Lama

This is an small cut from a conversation between Martin Seligman and the Dalai Lama. It took place in Sydney, Australia in December 2009…

‘So people said to me you want to work on happiness? And I said ‘no, not exactly’—happiness has become over the centuries something that has very different meanings for different people and was scientifically unwieldy. And so we break into four different disciplines in positive psychology.

So the first is about happiness, it’s the study of positive emotion and so for example people interested in this look at the most catastrophic thoughts that people say when bad events happen, and how to find a realistic perspective on catastrophic thoughts. So we teach people to argue against the catastrophic and to see good possibilities; so one field is positive emotion.

The second field is meaning. Human beings ineluctably want to be part of something bigger than they are, to belong to and serve something bigger than they are. So we asked people to identify their highest strengths, their highest virtues… humour, fairness, kindness and to learn to use them more particularly in difficult tasks and to use them to be part of something larger than they are.

The third discipline that people in positive psychology work on is positive relationships, how to get along better with people. And so for example there have actually been discoveries that I didn’t know ten years ago in this area in which, if you tell me something in traditional marital therapy, what you do is you teach people to argue better with each other. So you’re trying to change insufferable marriages into being barely tolerable! But in positive psychology we teach people to celebrate together rather when something good happens. If you tell me something enormously good that happened to you the technique not of being destructive about it but of getting you to relive it and to elaborate it. So, the third discipline is positive relationships.

And the fourth discipline is positive accomplishment—mastery, competence, achievement—and so we look for example of high grit, people who never give up, people with high self control and we ask ‘how do you build that?’

So those are the four things that positive psychologists do and work on. If you teach people early in life techniques of positive emotion, of engagement, of meaning, of good relationships, of accomplishment, can you prevent many of the ills of life; depression, anxiety, anger.’

       Martin Seligman

If you want more on this topic, visit this link: 

Have a wonderful week!

John Schinnerer Ph.D.

Guide To Self, Inc.

Danville CA

If you interested in a twelve week course on the latest in cultivating positive emotions, please send me an email at I am looking at developing a weekly, web-based coaching course where you can view hour long presentations inthe convenience of your own home for $47 per week. Compared to the rate clients pay me hourly, this is a huge savings.