Summary of Being Happy

You Don't Have to Be Perfect to Lead a Richer, Happier Life

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Being Happy book summary
Find true happiness through accepting your failures and savoring your successes.


7 Overall

8 Applicability

6 Innovation

7 Style


You can lead a more fulfilling life if you understand that you don’t have to be perfect to be happy. Tal Ben-Shahar, the best-selling author of Happier and an expert on positive psychology, explains how to achieve happiness while being less than perfect, that is, human. His tone is positive and encouraging as he walks you through setting challenging yet realistic goals, acknowledging the importance of failure in achieving success, and managing expectations in work, parenthood and love. Ben-Shahar draws on the teachings of great philosophers and the lives of notable individuals who conquered professional failure prior to great success. He addresses educating children, managing employees and being a good partner, and offers exercises and meditations you can practice to fulfill his central theme: accepting yourself and others. Though many other self-help books cover similar topics, Ben-Shahar’s approach is fresh and his information is meaningful. getAbstract suggests this clear, helpful handbook to managers, parents and anyone seeking a better work-life balance.

In this summary, you will learn

  • How a perfectionist differs from an “optimalist,”
  • How to achieve work-life balance
  • How to accept failure and lead a successful, happy life


The Perfectionist
Do you pride yourself on being meticulous and hard working? Do you define yourself as a perfectionist who sets high standards. If so, beware: your quest for perfection in all things may be causing you great unhappiness.

Perfectionism is self-limiting because...
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About the Author

Consultant Tal Ben-Shahar, PhD, an expert on positive psychology, also wrote Happier.

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    Paul Misner 4 years ago
    Potent summary for those who do too much and then burn out and derail. You can get better, quickly, by following the lessons that this summary teaches.

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