The War for Kindness

Book Notes

This book is referenced many times in The Happiness Lab podcast. Lori Santos mentions it also in her class, The Science of Happiness. When a scientist is recommending a book, and refers to it many times, might be time to go to the source and read it yourself.

Which I strongly recommend with this book.

Actually, I recommend this book for anyone with a polarized viewpoint of the world, because the book shows, if you're willing to read and ponder, how alike we are, how divided we are, and how we can walk a path towards not being divided.

Takes effort to build empathy, and, yet, the rewards are amazing. Honestly, I think hate and spite take too much effort.

Anyway, if you'll read, I'll buy you a copy. Strongly recommended.

Online, the first thing we encounter about a person is often the thing we’d like least about them, such as an ideology we despise. They are enemies before they have a chance to be people.
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Work from many labs, including my own, suggests that empathy is less like a fixed trait and more like a skill—something we can sharpen over time and adapt to the modern world.
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Carol Dweck teaches people that they can grow—become smarter, more open-minded, and more empathic. This causes them to work harder in the moment, persevere in the face of challenges, and notice their own strength. But mindsets, for instance about intelligence, can also produce slow-twitch change by turning into self-fulfilling prophecies. People who believe in themselves do things that give them even more reason to believe. They adopt habits of mind that work over the long term.
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