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074: How to Solve The Happiness Equation with Mo Gawdat

My guest today was tested in the way no parent every wants to be or thinks they will.

Mo Gawdat is the Chief Business Officer at Google’s [X]. At Google, his team is responsible for exploring “moonshot” dreams like the much-lauded self-driving car and providing global internet access by using sub-orbital balloons. For being at the top of a “dream team” though, Mo realized in 2001 that he was miserably unhappy and spirits were far from sailing above the clouds. So he did the one thing he knew how to do better than anything: he put his engineering experience to work and, by using data and research, he created an algorithm and “solved” happiness.

Thirteen years later, Mo’s algorithm would be put to the ultimate test. After the sudden, senseless death of his son Ali, Mo and his family turned to his equation which saved them from depths of despair. With a new sense of purpose and a drive to honor his son’s memory, he began the #10MillionHappy Mission designed to make at least that many people realize that happiness is within their control.

Today we’ll dive into the framework behind Solve for Happy and so much more.

We dive into topics like

  • Mo’s “modern day warrior” journey that led him to Solve for Happy
  • The 6 Grand Illusions, the 7 Blind Spots, and the 5 Ultimate Truths
  • Understanding the true meaning of happiness in the modern world
  • Happiness as your default setting
  • How happiness is truly the absence of unhappiness
  • The passing of Mo’s son and how Mo dealt with the loss
  • Reframing happiness as a state of peace
  • How the modern world has confused happiness with what Mo calls “weapons of mass distraction
  • How to identify when you are engaging in distraction instead of true happiness
  • It’s not the events of life that make you unhappy, it’s the way you think about the events of life that make you unhappy
  • Our brain is constantly weighing our surroundings and seeing if it matches our expectations
  • Conquering the grand illusion of thought
  • How to train your brain to search for the truth of a situation
  • How to see where we are over-controlling and how to let go
  • How do you react when life seems out of control?
  • Needless suffering
  • Our brain’s ability to filter information and how that affects our perception
  • The one question to ask yourself to get to the truth of any situation
  • How to take advantage of the brain’s inherent negativity bias
  • Using your awareness to trace an emotion back to a thought
  • The difference between conditional love and true love

Click to Tweet Mo’s quote

“The gravity of the battle means nothing to those at peace.

Connect with Mo on social media

Twitter | Facebook | YouTube | Website


You may also like these episodes

  • Cultivating Self-Love, Finding Happiness, and Training The Bliss Habit with Lori Harder

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