Saturday, May 1, 2010

The Happiness Project


thehappiness project I read a lot of self-help books but I haven’t read one this good in a very long time.

I picked up the book, The Happiness Project, by Gretchen Rubin, on a whim. I was strolling around Chapters waiting for my daughter to finish making her selections when I noticed it.  This is the type of book I will usually pick up at the library, to save money, but instead I decided to buy it.  I am so glad I did.  From the very first page, this book was incredibly interesting and so hard to put down.  I read it whenever I had a spare minute.  I used a yellow highlighter to mark passages that I wanted to take note of but already I have decided to go back and read the entire thing again.  It’s that good.  Really.

Although Rubin took the time to read everything she could about what makes people happy, she doesn’t bore you with statistics.  She takes inspiration from a variety of sources and then tries to apply the wisdom to her own life.  She provides the information in the form of a memoir that spans a one year period. She talks frankly about what worked and what didn’t and why.  Rubin is brutally honest throughout the book, even when that honesty doesn’t cast her in a positive light.

I got a lot of great ideas from reading this book, ideas that I would like to share in future blog posts.  One of Rubin’s main points is that everyone’s Happiness Project will look different. What makes one person very happy might make another miserable and that’s okay.  The idea is to try different things until you figure out what brings you joy.  The perfectionist in me would like to start my Happiness Project on January 1st just as Gretchen did but I am too excited to begin to wait that long.  So I will begin now, on May 1st.  Spring is a time of rebirth and growth so, actually, what better time to start?