The Humanist Approach to Happiness by Jennifer HancockThe Humanist Approach to Happiness: Practical Wisdom

Written by Jennifer Hancock

This book will help you talk to your kids about why ethics are important and how to integrate ethics into their decision making.

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How to Use this Book / Reviews / About the Author

For Educators / Book Information

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Get 10% off list price of $11.99 by typing in TCVNU7DU at check out.

Or get an Autographed copy for $16.00

Parenting Expert Reviews:

Using clear, easy to understand language and a good sense of humor, "Humanist Approach" offers a bedrock of excellent, timeless advice as we search for guideposts by which to live our lives. I find the humanistic connection she draws between responsibility, compassion and happiness to be particularly useful with my teenage and young adult clients. A most important read!  

- Dr. John Duffy, Author of The Available Parent ( )

Jennifer gives so many tips that made me say, “Well, that’s easy!  Why didn’t I think of that?” ... After reading her book, I feel a little more equipped to help our 12 year old navigate the teenage years.  This book is originally intended for the young adult audience, but I believe it’s more than helpful as a mom.  I think any mom could benefit from the many tips Hancock offers her readers.

- Jamie Roubinek, mom blogger, (Read full review here)

This book is a easy read, practical and easily comprehensible.I could really see this not only being used in youth groups but for talking points for parents. Sometimes you just don't know where to start the discussion and this can help you jump start them.

- Pam Camel , Austistic parenting blogger (Read full review here)

Can I just say?  This book is a MUST READ. And here's why. The Humanist Approach to Happiness advocates taking personal responsibility for our own happiness and gives us the tools to achieve it. ... As a Christian, I certainly disagree with portions of the book's philosophy.  However, the overall spirit and context of the book can be appropriately applied no matter your religion or belief system.  I encourage you to consider buying this book - especially if you have children, a teenager, or a chronically poor decision-making person in your life.

- Darlene Franco, Natural living and parenting blogger (Read full review here)

I can say that if you're a parent of a teen or young adult or you are a young adult, you will benefit from reading this book, whether you are a Humanist or not.  I can also say that I can almost guarantee that everyone in this world probably wishes that everyone else acted like a Humanist.  The advice for life that the author gives in this book is common sense and practical.  It's advice that will make you happier, stronger, avoid heartache, or else deal with it wisely when it comes your way.

- Gena Lazcano, Christian Mom Blogger ( Read Full Review Here)


Buy the Humanist Approach to Happiness Now

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How to Use This Book

The Humanist approach to Happiness was written as a way to encourage young people to think about and discuss their personal ethics and values in the context of every day decision making. In other words, how can they be the best most ethical person they can be. How can and why should they be ethical with their friends? What values should they be considering when they are deciding whether or not to try drugs and to drink alcohol? How and why should we be ethical while dating, and breaking up? How can we apply our values to ourselves when we are grieving? And most importantly, why all this matters.

The best way to use this book is to read a chapter and discuss it's contents with your child. What do you agree with? What advice do you disagree with and why? The best way to prepare your child to think through ethical dilemnas on their own is to encourage them to think for themselves by asking them questions and playing devil's advocate with them. Remember, you and your child don't have to agree with what is in the book. It is only a starting point for your discussions about how you as their parent have chosen to live your life and how your child might want to start thinking about how they want to live theirs. The overarching theme of the book is that your actions have consequences, so choose your actions wisely. The primary question you and your child should be asking is, what do I think the consequences of my actions will be in any given situation and do I want that consequence or not? What could I do different to get a better outcome?

One of the things I wanted to do with this book was to provide some very basic and practical information for young people to help them navigate through their lives as they become more independent. While some of the book is obviously philosophical, most of it is actually quite practical. Again, it's designed to be a starting point for conversations. Feel free to share your knowledge about how you view these subjects with your child and how you specifically deal with these situations yourself.

You will also find that I share a number of personal stories about my experiences throughout the book. Feedback from young people who have read this book are that they really enjoy the stories and that they learn more from those than the bits about philosophy or the advice. It's a good idea to relate your own experiences with the topics discussed in the book to help your child better understand the real life implications of their decisions by learning about the real life consequences you experienced, both the good and the bad.

Finally, I am rather opinionated in the book and it is written from an explicitly Humanist viewpoint. I did this because I felt the best way to get people to think about their own values was to share mine and it just so happens that my personal frame of reference is Humanism. It would have been dishonest to hide that fact. The good news is that Humanist ethics are actually common human ethics and most people, regardless of belief or background value the same things. Long story short, you should find that the values discussed in the book are in line with your personal values, whatever they are. However, if they aren't, please don't let that worry you. You do not need to agree with me or with my values or my advice to use this book successfully with your children. The point of the book is to discuss it. If it challenges your thinking or the thinking of your child and you both decide you don't agree with me, wonderful! You now have a better idea of what it is you do value and why and how you might apply your own values to your life. And as far as I am concerned, mission accomplished.

Jennifer Hancock, Author

Buy the Humanist Approach to Happiness Now

Get 10% off list price of $11.99 by typing in TCVNU7DU at check out.

Or get an Autographed copy for $16.00


To read a sample chapter or get a chapter by chapter outline - go to the main book page

To see what youth educators are saying about the book - go to the educators page

About the Author:

Jen helps parents focus on the real purpose of parenting: which is to teach our kids the skills they need to succeed in life. Whether the topic is bullying, choosing friends, being financial responsible, or simply why not to cheat, she makes difficult topics seem easy. Her advice is so practical it will leave you thinking, “Why didn’t I think of that?”  

As a Humanist parent herself, Jen practices what she preaches. Her parenting philosophy is to treat her son with compassion and respect. She actively models responsibility, compassion for others and ethical behavior. However, she has been known to subject her son to the Socratic Method, which she calls mental jujitsu, in an effort to help him learn how to choose his actions wisely. People who meet her son are always impressed with how confidently he carries himself.

The time to teach your kid the skills they need to succeed in life is now!

To learn more about how Jennifer can help parents help their kids, or to make volume purchases of her books, contact her at:

Humanistic Parenting Workshops

If you are interested in learning more Humanistic Parenting techniques and would like to attend one of Jennifer's workshops online or in person, please visit her at:

And be sure to check out Jen's other book: The Bully Vaccine