Obama Speaks At Hate Crimes Prevention Act Enactment (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

People get angry for all sorts of reasons, from the trivial ones (someone cut me off on the highway) to the really serious ones (people keep dying in Syria and nobody is doing anything about it). But, mostly, anger arises for trivial reasons. That’s why the American Psychological Association has a section of its website devoted to anger management. Interestingly, it reads very much like one of the oldest treatises on the subject, On Anger, written by the Stoic philosopher Lucius Annaeus Seneca back in the first century CE.

Keep reading Show less

To Be Happier, Focus on What’s within Your Control

God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change,
Courage to change the things I can,
And wisdom to know the difference.

Seinfeld - Episode #04-0715 (1996) Castle Rock Entertainment. (Photo By Getty Images)
God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change,
Courage to change the things I can,
And wisdom to know the difference.

This is the Serenity Prayer, originally written by the American theologian Reinhold Niebuhr around 1934, and commonly used by Alcoholics Anonymous and similar organisations. It is not just a key step toward recovery from addiction, it is a recipe for a happy life, meaning a life of serenity arrived at by consciously taking what life throws at us with equanimity. 

Keep reading Show less