Neil Pasricha – The Journey to Finding Happiness in Life.

Episode: 049

What are the secrets to achieving happiness?

Neil Pasricha is a New York Times bestselling author of The Book of Awesome and The Happiness Equation. Neil has spent the last decade of his life as the Director of Leadership Development at Walmart, which he left this year to pursue his writing projects. He is also the writer and creator of the 1000 Awesome Things blog, which has won Best Blog in the World two years in a row. Connor sits down with Neil to discuss some of the secrets to happiness and why it is so hard to find.



Key Takeaways:
[2:25] Grab a pen and paper for this episode!
[3:10] What was Neil’s defining moment?
[6:00] What was it like giving a TED Talk?
[8:35] Beautiful things come out of darkness.
[9:15] Are you building a business on the side? Neil says don’t quit your day job.
[10:05] Neil was not a confident person, but when he started his side business, he gained more confidence. This lead him to being promoted at his full-time job.
[11:25] Despite Neil’s success, he didn’t leave his full-time job at Walmart until this year.
[11:55] Connor completely understands as he just left his corporate job 6 months ago.
[12:30] Let’s talk happiness! What are some of the secrets of happiness?
[13:40] We want happiness, but we can’t seem to get it.
[15:00] How can we give our children happiness if we ourselves aren’t even happy?
[15:25] The Happiness Equation is a personal letter to Neil’s child.
[16:25] You have to be happy first in order to find success. It’s not the other way around.
[17:35] You live 10 years longer if you’re happy.
[19:15] When Connor was experiencing a dark time in his life, what really pulled him out of it was gratitude journaling.
[20:35] Never retire!
[22:00] Find a reason to get out of bed every morning.
[22:40] Retirement is dangerous and it creates loss of purpose.
[23:55] Neil talks about the four S – Social, Structure, Stimulation, and Story.
[25:35] What are the biggest misconceptions about happiness?
[28:25] How do you overcome criticism? Do it for you.
[30:45] Would you do this task for free? If the answer is no, you’re on the wrong track.
[32:20] What happens if you’re ‘too busy’? How can you not be ‘too busy’?
[40:40] Let’s talk about mindset and why it’s so important.
[43:15] When your day is going south, remember that you’ve already won the lottery. You have it good.
[48:00] All you have to do is write down 5 gratitudes a week and you’ll see an improvement in your happiness.
[50:25] Recognize you’re in a bad mood, recognize that it will end, and recognize that those two things are okay and you will feel good again.
[53:15] Who is the most authentically happy person Neil has ever met?
[54:00] What is the one experience Neil recommends to anyone?
[54:25] What is the most underrated trait in modern day life?
[54:40] What is one book Neil would take when stranded on an island?
[55:00] What was the single biggest lesson Neil learned at Harvard?
[56:25] Who is the most influential person on happiness?

Mentioned in This Episode:
The Book of Awesome by Neil Pasricha
The Happiness Equation by Neil Pasricha
Neil’s TED Talk – The 3 A’s of Awesome
The Nun Study
 by Julia Cameron
On the Shortness of Life by Seneca

Music Credit:
Parlange & Latenite Automatic (


“That side project is important on the side as long as possible.”

“My parents’ advice as a child was totally backwards. If you do great work, have a big success, you’ll be happy.”

“Create a life that you just want to carry on until the end.”


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