“Nightline anchor Dan Harris embarks on an unexpected, hilarious, and deeply skeptical odyssey through the strange worlds of spirituality and self-help, and discovers a way to get happier that is truly achievable.
After having a nationally televised panic attack on Good Morning America, Dan Harris knew he had to make some changes. A lifelong nonbeliever, he found himself on a bizarre adventure, involving a disgraced pastor, a mysterious self-help guru, and a gaggle of brain scientists. Eventually, Harris realized that the source of his problems was the very thing he always thought was his greatest asset: the incessant, insatiable voice in his head, which had both propelled him through the ranks of a hyper-competitive business and also led him to make the profoundly stupid decisions that provoked his on-air freak-out.
We all have a voice in our head. It’s what has us losing our temper unnecessarily, checking our email compulsively, eating when we’re not hungry, and fixating on the past and the future at the expense of the present. Most of us would assume we’re stuck with this voice that there’s nothing we can do to rein it in but Harris stumbled upon an effective way to do just that. It’s a far cry from the miracle cures peddled by the self-help swamis he met; instead, it’s something he always assumed to be either impossible or useless: meditation. After learning about research that suggests meditation can do everything from lower your blood pressure to essentially rewire your brain, Harris took a deep dive into the underreported world of CEOs, scientists, and even marines who are now using it for increased calm, focus, and happiness.
10% Happier takes listeners on a ride from the outer reaches of neuroscience to the inner sanctum of network news to the bizarre fringes of America’s spiritual scene, and leaves them with a takeaway that could actually change their lives.” -Audible
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Synopsis: “One of the most significant books ever written by a head of State, the Meditations are a collection of philosophical thoughts by the Emperor Marcus Aurelius (121 – 180 ce). Covering issues such as duty, forgiveness, brotherhood, strength in adversity and the best way to approach life and death, the Meditations have inspired thinkers, poets, and politicians since their first publication more than 500 years ago. Today, the book stands as one of the great guides and companions – a cornerstone of Western thought.” -Audible
Synopsis: “The Tao of Seneca (volumes 1-3) is an introduction to Stoic philosophy through the words of Seneca. If you study Seneca, you’ll be in good company. He was popular with the educated elite of the Greco-Roman Empire, but Thomas Jefferson also had Seneca on his bedside table. Thought leaders in Silicon Valley tout the benefits of Stoicism, and NFL management, coaches, and players alike – from teams such as the Patriots and Seahawks – have embraced it because the principles make them better competitors. Stoicism is a no-nonsense philosophical system designed to produce dramatic real-world effects. Think of it as an ideal operating system for thriving in high-stress environments. This is your guide.” -Amazon
Opening thoughts: Recommended by Tim Ferriss on several occasions. How could I say no? This installment has been on my Audible wish list for a while now, so it was only a matter of time. Going in, I had no idea what Stoicism was. However, based on what Tim says, it’s an effective framework by which to operate in your daily life. Also per Tim’s recommendation, I would listen to these letters separately and reflect on each one. I would listen to one letter each time I got into my car and commuted to work, so I listened to two letters per day.