Here are the 10 most popular Greater Good articles from the past year, according to Google Analytics.
1. What Is the Best Diet for Mental Health?, by Kira Newman: New research is exploring the connection between the foods we eat and our feelings of depression, anxiety, and happiness.
2. How to Motivate Kids to Practice Hard Things, by Maryam Abdullah: Recent research can help us teach kids to practice the right way to reach their goals.
“A growing body of research is discovering that food doesn’t just affect our waistline but also our moods, emotions, and even longer-term conditions like depression.”
3. Five Ways to Talk with Your Kids So They Feel Loved, by Shauna Tominey: These warm, nurturing messages need repeating over and over again with our children.
4. Thirteen Films that Highlight the Best in Humanity, by Jeremy Adam Smith, Jill Suttie, Amy Eva, Maryam Abdullah, Zaid Jilani, Jesse Antin, Shea Tuttle, and Shawn Taylor: It’s time for the Greater Goodies, honoring movies from the past year that exemplify human strengths and virtues.
5. What Are the Best Ways to Prevent Bullying in Schools?, by Diana Divecha: A new study identifies the most effective approaches to bullying prevention.
6. Why You Never Seem to Have Enough Time, by Kira Newman: We feel pressed for time due to our own psychology, not just the tyranny of the clock.
7. How to Help Young People Transition Into Adulthood, by Betty Ray: Modern “rites of passage” can help teens prepare for an uncertain future..
“Trying to live up to any rigid ideal actually gets in the way of happiness.”
8. Is Marriage Really Bad for Women’s Happiness?, by Emiliana Simon-Thomas: Paul Dolan claims that women might be happier if they stay single. What does the research say?
9. Four Ways to Calm Your Mind in Stressful Times, by Emma Seppala: A sense of calm offers us strength and resilience amid the chaos of life.
10. Seven Ways to Feel More in Control of Your Life by Anthony Rao and Paul Napper: Developing greater agency can help you make important life decisions and feel less overwhelmed, stuck, and lost.
We polled our staff and editorial advisors on their personal favorites from the past year—and came up with more you might also consider reading, listed by number of votes they received.
1. What Being a Stepfather Taught Me About Love, by Jeremy Adam Smith: Jeremy Adam Smith has learned some difficult lessons from his stepchild—and he’s grateful for them.
2. How Cultural Differences Shape Your Gratitude, by Kira Newman: Americans say thanks a lot, but other cultures may have a deeper understanding of gratitude.
“Stepparents must meet much higher standards, as perhaps they should, if they want children to feel safe with them.”
3. How I Learned to Forgive My Father, by Jill Suttie: Jill Suttie struggled her whole life to make peace with her alcoholic father—and with herself.
4. Does a Meaningful Job Need to Burn You Out?, by Michael Steger: It’s a gift when work is so meaningful that you’d do it for free. And that’s also a problem.
6. What Is the True Cost of Polarization in America?, by Jeremy Adam Smith and Zaid Jilani: If Americans don’t learn to build bridges with each other, we may see more government shutdowns, lying, segregation—and even violence.
7. Why Trees Can Make You Happier, by Jill Suttie: Research suggests that being around trees is good for our mental and social well-being.
8. What Can Parents Do About Bullying?, by Diana Divecha: Parents can take steps to help prevent bullying and to intervene when it happens.
“There is no question that storytelling for black America is a way of saying 'I am here and I matter.'”
9. Why Do We Think Money Buys Happiness?, by Emiliana Simon-Thomas: A bank error sent a Pennsylvania couple on a spending spree. What does their case reveal about the bad and good in humanity?
10. How to Renew Your Compassion in the Face of Suffering, by Elizabeth Svoboda: Mass suffering can make us feel helpless. Focusing on solutions, rather than emotions, may be the way out.
11. How Americans Can Find What They Have in Common, by Zaid Jilani: Can we bridge differences without suppressing what makes us different in the first place? Yes, say social scientists and civic organizations.
12. Why Telling Our Own Stories is So Powerful for Black Americans, by Andrea Collier: Andrea Collier reflects on the role of storytelling in black American history—and in her own life.
“Like all kids, those growing up with a disorder have strengths and weaknesses; the two coexist.”
13. How to be a Strengths-Based Parent for Kids with Learning Differences, by Lea Waters: Focusing on our children’s strengths helps counter the message that there is something wrong or lacking in them.
14. In a Divided World, We Need to Choose Empathy, by Jamil Zaki: It’s gotten harder to empathize; that’s why it’s so important we work at it. Luckily, we can.
15. How Phones Compromise Our Ability to Connect, by Jill Suttie: A new study shows that when people are on their phones, they smile less, affecting their ability to connect with others.
Did you have any favorite Greater Good articles? Please do nominate your own favorites in a comment.