When Pixar was dreaming up the idea for Inside Out, a film that would explore the roiling emotions inside the head of a young girl, they needed guidance from an expert. So they called Dacher Keltner.
Dacher is a psychologist at UC Berkeley who has dedicated his career to understanding how human emotion shapes the way we interact with the world, how we properly manage difficult or stressful situations, and ultimately, how we treat one another.
In fact, he refers to emotions as the “language of social living.” The more fluent we are in this language, the happier and more meaningful our lives can be.
We tackle a wide variety of topics in this conversation that I think you’ll really enjoy.
Here are a few highlights from our conversation:
- The three main drivers that determine your personal happiness and life satisfaction
- Simple things you can do everyday to jumpstart the “feel good” reward center of your brain
- The principle of “jen” and how we can use “high-jen behaviors” to bootstrap our own happiness
- How to have more positive influence in our homes, at work and in our communities.
- How to teach your kids to be more kind and empathetic in an increasingly self-centered world
- What you can do to stay grounded and humble if you are in a position of power or authority
- How to catch our own biases when we’re overly critical of another’s ideas (or overconfident in our own)
And much more. We could have spent an hour discussing any one of these points alone, but there was so much I wanted to cover. I’m certain you’ll find this episode well worth your time.