I hope you are all doing great! Today I want to tell you about this book you probably already heard about: ‘Solve for Happy’ from Mo Gawdat. In Dutch the name of the book is ‘De logica van geluk’, which literally means the logic of happiness. I find the dutch title more on point than the English title to be honest. In the Netherlands, people probably know the writer from RTL Late Night where he talked about his book. Mo Gawdat went viral a few times as well on Facebook (that’s where I’ve seen him), with his story about looking at a glass as if it’s half full or half empty.
Mohammed (Mo) Gawdat is the author of the book ‘Solve for Happy’. He is the Chief Business Officer of Google X. On his CV you can find way more impressive functions, as for example Head Communications of Microsoft. Besides that, he is an entrepreneur and co-founded around twenty businesses.
Most people would think with this big deal of success, you have to be happy. But Mo wasn’t and with his need for making everything explicable with formulas, he started to look for the formula for happiness. It wasn’t until his son Ali died at the age of 21, that he decided to make it his mission to share the formula to make 10 million people happy.
What I found very fascinating about this guy, is that he focuses on one subject every year and tries to read as much as possible about this particular subject. You can feel the knowledge throughout the whole book. This book has a base of philosophy and it feels like he combined a lot of knowledge of different philosophers and put everything into a formula. Sometimes I felt like he was giving the wrong example for certain things, but most of the time everything made sense and fell right in place.
Solve for Happy
The book is divided into 4 parts, the introduction and 3 parts that explain the formula. These 3 parts describe 3 different factors in the formula for happiness: the illusions, the blind spots and the ultimate truths. The 6 illusions Mo describes in his book are factors that make you suffer. The illusions he describes are thoughts, the self, knowledge, time, control and fear. They make you suffer because they put a pressure on you, a pressure which is just an illusion.
The second part is about the 7 blind spots. These blind spots are keeping you from knowing real happiness. The blind spots he describes in this book are filters, assumptions, predictions, memories, judgments, emotions and exaggerations. They keep you from seeing the real world, they make you blind for the truth as simple as the truth can be.
The third part is about how to find true happiness. He describes it as the ultimate truths. The chapters in this part are (in my opinion) mostly about acceptation. He writes about the now, change, love, death and the design (of the world and humanity).
This book has so many examples of the daily life and gives you so many ‘aha’-moments (as Oprah would call them), that the book stays in your mind during the day. It makes you aware of the ‘wrong’ assumptions, the limit of knowledge and lots of other illusions the mind puts in your head. They say to change something, you first have to be aware of it. Without awareness you can’t change anything. This book gave me the awareness of the factors that can keep you from being happy. This doesn’t mean these factors are gone after reading this book, but it gives you the opportunity to focuses on these factors and turn them into reality.
Do you feel like life is passing by way too fast and do you want to feel more at ease? Then this book is a perfect start for you to open up your mind and be aware of the factors that can change your life.