Today we at Daastan are feeling generous. Therefore, we will be talking about books that will help you boost your serotonin levels. Aristotle believed the purpose of literature is to provide catharsis and purge the soul. However, no one needs catharsis or purging all the time through invoking fear and pity. Sometimes, we just need to tap into the lighter side of life and reach for little happy moments. To do that, we are introducing you to Meik Wiking, the happiness researcher and author.
Meet Meik Wiking
The year is 2012 and Meik is sitting at home thinking about why the government researches always show Denmark to be the happiest place in the world over and over again. He thought, “Somebody should look into that”. Little did he know at the time, it would be him who would end up becoming world’s most influential happiness researcher. After long sleepless nights of brainstorming, Meik started working on his ideas.
“I started out with what I thought was a good idea and a bad laptop.”
Today famous as The Indiana Jones of Smiles, Meik is not only a successful author but a motivational speaker and CEO of the Happiness Research Institute. His books have translated in more than 30 languages across the world. Moreover, he is Research Associate for Denmark at the World Database of Happiness, and also a member of the policy advisory group for the Global Happiness Policy Report.
The Art of Making Memories
Everyone wants to remember their happiest days. For some it’s the first step their child takes, a hug after a long period of distance, a cup of coffee after a tiring day, celebrating birthdays or any other moment that holds significance for them. However, some of us struggle with remembering. Sometimes, we are only able to recall a fragment of our happy days and all else feels like a smoke screen. Is it because we don’t truly live in the moment? Or are we simply bad at keeping score of all the good that happens in our lives. Either way, we all wish for beautiful vivid memories to sustain us on the darkest of days. Meik Wiking knows the answer to all these questions. It is because he asks all the right questions himself.
“What ingredients produce happy memories? Why is it that a piece of music, a smell, a taste can take us back to something we had forgotten? And can we learn to create happy memories and be better at holding on to them?”
The Little Book of Hygge
After hitting upon the idea of researching on ‘happiness’, Meik compiled his book on ‘hygge’. He believes it’s not how you spell or pronounce it that makes a difference but it’s about feeling it. Meik is determined to make us all do the inner work and help us embark on the journey of happiness. We all may try and explain what hygge is. But it is best to leave it to Meik Wiking himself to describe that to us. Afterall he is the happiness scientist.
“Hygge has been described as everything from “the art of creating intimacy”, “cosines of the soul”, “the absence of annoyance” to “taking pleasure from the presence of soothing things”, “cosy togetherness” and “the pursuit of everyday pleasures”.
“Happiness consists more in small conveniences or pleasures that occur every day, than in great pieces of good fortune that happen but seldom.”
The Little Book of Lykke
Continuing our journey of exploring Danish secrets to happiness, we have another book by Meik Wiking. The Little Book of Lykke takes one on the journey of inner fulfilment. In addition, Meik also shares stories and habits of the happiest people from the world to show us what they are doing right in order stay happy. While Meik agrees that Danish people are the happiest, he also tells his readers that happiness is not limited to a certain region or nation. Infact, it can be found in every corner of the world. And so he begins his search and documents it in his book.
“From how we spend our precious time, to how we relate to our neighbours and cook dinner, he gathers evidence, stories and tips from the very happiest corners of the planet. This is the ultimate guide to how we can all find a little more lykke in our lives.”
We hope you enjoyed this little journey of happiness with us. For more literary goodness, stay tuned!