Notes from 'Secrets of the World's Happiest People'

The six ingredients of happiness are togetherness, money, health, freedom, trust and kindness.


In The Little Book of Lykke, Meik identifies the six ingredients that explain the majority of differences in happiness across the world: togetherness, money, health, freedom, trust and kindness, and explores what actions we can take to become happier.


Here are the six ingredients as outlined in the book.

  1. Togetherness

    Sharing food nurtures more than our physical body. It feeds our friendships, bolsters our bonds, and nourishes our sense of community.

    Creating common areas for the community encourages social interactions and impromptu conversations between residents.

    If you think back to a time you felt happy - a time you felt good, laughed, or smiled, chances are you were together with other people.

    The happiness tip is to make the effort to speak to your neighbours, meet them for coffee, help them in the shared garden, or just stop to chat next time you see them.

  2. Money

    Lack of money is a cause of unhappiness.

    Take time to enjoy the journey towards your goal, but also understand that achieving your goal will not fulfill you completely.

    We continuously raise the bar for what we want or what we need to feel happy. There is no single thing that will quench our ambitions forever.

    Focus on the journey, not the destination.

  3. Health

    Health is wealth.

    Good health allows us to play, enjoy life, and seek adventures.

  4. Freedom

    Life is defined by time. Time is a finite, non-replenishable, and perishable resource. It is also the only resource that is granted to all humans evenly.

    Three key areas have an impact on how you spend your time: work, family/relationships, and commute.

  5. Trust

    People who trust other people are happier.

    When there is trust, you don’t need to write up a contract for every simple transaction, a deal is a deal, and your word is your word.

    If you tell the truth, you don’t have to remember everything.

  6. Kindness

    Find ways you can volunteer to help others. Improve your community and develop your sense of purpose.

    Smile and chat with strangers. Hand out smiles and friendly remarks. They are free.

    Learn the name of someone you see every day. Greet that person by name.

    Talk to the shy person who’s by themselves at a party or the office.

    Give someone a genuine compliment.


Our real life is always not so good, but we can try some of the practices in the book to make us happier.

I’m looking forward to traveling to northern Europe with my family to experience the kind of happy life in the book.