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This Dan Gilbert Keynote Demonstrates How Humans Misjudge Their Own Pleasure

By: Jaime Neely - Apr 18, 2012
References: ted & youtu.be
Packed with fascinating research and memorable anecdotes, the Dan Gilbert keynote offers an eye-opening discussion on happiness and the human brain. Dan Gilbert explains how the human brain today is capable of synthesizing happiness thanks to its evolutionary development. Gilbert's speech challenges the notion that true happiness must be found.

Drawing examples from a wide variety of topics and subjects, Gilbert shows how people are capable of finding happiness in events and situations that don't necessarily match up to desired outcomes. To really drive this idea home, Gilbert references an experiment he did with a group of patients who suffer from anterograde amnesia (the inability to create new memories). These individuals were asked to rank their favorite Monet painting, after having already chosen one to take home with them. Gilbert explains how these people were unaffected by the fact that they knew they owned the one they chose already. Gilbert's speech offers an abundance of interesting research, jaw-dropping examples and a reason to question the way we judge our own happiness.