The Power of Meaning

Three years ago I picked up a book that changed the way I look at life.

It was by a young writer called Emily Esfahani Smith who argues that rather than searching for happiness, what we need most in our lives is meaning.

As well as writing for the New York Times, Time magazine and the Wall Street Journal, Emily’s TED Talk on the same topic has been viewed more than a million times.

Through her research, Emily has identified the four ‘pillars’ that bring meaning into our lives, which are: belonging, purpose, storytelling, and transcendence.

Her philosophy resonated with me even more during lockdown and after re-reading The Power Of Meaning I dropped her a line to see if she would be willing to have a chat as part of our Project Positivity webcast series.

Thankfully she said yes, and I’m delighted to be able to share our conversation with you.

If you’re feeling at sixes and sevens as a result of the events of the past few months, this is for you.


Marc Astley

CEO, Astley Media


By Dan Pritchard, MD, Program