Blue Zones of Happiness – Book Review

What are the Blue Zone of Happiness? They are the geographical locations where there are strong concentrations of something, in this case amount of Happiest people. These zones are specially interesting to study, as to understand why some people are happier than others.

Why Are Certain People Happier In Some Places As Opposed To Others

The happiness comes from within, or at least it should. Still, certain external factors facilitate happiness, which is exactly what Dan Buettner tries to find his book – The Blue Zones of Happiness – Lessons From the Worlds Happiest People.

To do so, Buettner looks at different sources of happiness information, such as World Happiness Reports, World Database of Happiness, and Gallup-Sharecoare Well Being Index, to find where experts believe these happiest people are centralized. He then proceeds to study what people do in these places, as opposite to others, to be happier.

Worlds Bluest Zones 

Buettner identifies 3 countries where there are more happiest people, such as Costa Rica, Denmark, and Singapore. Interestingly enough, these countries may not be the happiest, but they possess certain happiness characteristic, which is more prominent than in other places. Specifically:

Happiness in Costa Rica comes from developing deep connections with people around us, such as it is the case with families, friends, religion, and other people around us. This is the case of people who eat together during the launch, showing compassion to others, and living with older generations, all under the same roof. Personally, I call this a Social Pillar of Happiness.

Happiness in Denmark comes from social security and developing great social atmosphere for all people who live there. This is achieved through developing social programs, such as art projects, social equality, and relaxed lifestyles, where people don’t have to work long hours and take many vocations. It is true that for all these blessings people in Denmark pay higher taxes than most countries in the world, but this money is spent back in the communities, which are happier because of the fact. These characteristics, although not fully, fall into my Growth Pillar of Happiness.

Happiness in Singapore is more wealth based. There are many rich people in Singapore and these access to money allows people to do more things that people actually enjoy, such as it is the case of pursuit of dreams. This also give people higher access to a better education, health care, and freedom, which people may not feel that they have in different countries. This is, of course, Wealth Pillar of Happiness, in my writing.

Thus, looking at all these countries, and other counties best practices to happiness, Buettner came up with a list of things that countries can do to improve their populations happiness. These are:

  • Promote volunteering – as the more society benefits as more people volunteer
  • Measure national Happiness – To measure factors that actually make people happy rather than national GDP
  • Focus on minorities – Increase national happiness, by focusing on the least happy
  • End corruption, inequality, discrimination – Promoting love for all human beings
  • Invest in education – As better information leads to less Happiness Mistakes
  • Promote social connection – As it is once again the Social Pillars of Happiness
  • Promote health – As it is the Health pillars of Happiness 

Buettner also looks at what it takes to create healthier and happier communities, home space, better work environment, and other pillars of happiness, which are great and informative topics, which I know many people to be interested in knowing.

Still, this book review would not be a great review if I didn’t point some other things that are happiness.

What Else is Happiness

  • Happiness comes from within, or at least it should. This was already mentioned before in this review, but was not so much noted in the book. In fact, author makes more of external world case of happiness rather than internal.
  • Longevity, aka Health, is a pillar of happiness, which the topic authors first book. This is perhaps why there are so many references to relationship between health and happiness in this book, which also takes away from other pillars of happiness. Simply said, it is virtually impossible to be an expert in everything, so this book is mostly about relationship between health and happiness.
  • The biggest challenge to happiness, which I specially found in my writing is to discriminate between what’s important and not. And while I liked how the author tried to create a 10 list for every topic he covered, I also felt that a person who know less about whats more important and not could be lost.

Happiness Book Reviews

An interesting fact about Blue Zones of Happiness, which was a reason I picked up this book in the first place, is that its is currently the best selling book on happiness on Amazon. This being said, I never heard of this book or the author. I guess, he has a big circle of followers and a catchy title, which is why many people are interested in his writing.

After reading the book, I found many interesting references to research into the happiest countries in the world, which I will consider in future for my own writing. These references is exactly why I started my Happiness Book Reviews Club. I simply believe that no one has all the answers and there is always more interesting information to be learned specially about a such important topic like happiness.

Last Words

Do you like books about happiness? If you enjoyed reading this review it is very likely that you will enjoy other happiness advice I have on this website. As such subscribe to my Daily Happiness Advice newsletter and Social Media and receive updates daily reminders and techniques to make your days a little bit brighter everyday! See you soon.

Article by Roman Russo

Author, Blogger & Happiness Coach. Just published my first book called - HOW TO ACT NORMAL !!! It is about how Marketing failing to make us Happy and what we can do about it. Indeed, we are surrounded my marketing every day, but we seldom think what is an accumulative effect of all these ads does to our Psychology and Happiness. Still, happiness today and forever is possible. The only thing we need it to change the way we think! The goal is to make this world a happier place for everyone to live, as happier world will be a better place to live in. Do you agree? Please help me spread this cause!

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