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Sunday, April 25, 2010

The Happiness Project

"The Happiness Project, or why I spent a year trying to sing in the morning, clean my closets, fight right, read Aristotle, and generally having more fun. By Gretchen Rubin."

This book should be read by everyone who is in their thirties and going through that stage of life where they are looking for more and trying to discover what will help them be happy. It is a book about self discovery. The author shares how she decided on what her values were and how she put her values into action to help her get more out of life.

For those of us who have already gone through that stage of life and journeyed through our own process of learning what is important in life, it is a book that can take us back in that mode of reflection where we can compare our own journey of self discovery to what she went through. It can also serve as a reminder how life is made of up little moments of just daily living activities and how those daily moments are what you is used to weave your happiness life tapestry.

But I also found the book comforting in a way I didn’t expect. It helped me recall how during that stage of discovery, what I expected as being my formula for happiness was different from what I eventually learned. There was a lot of trial and error in my process. The book helped to remind me how during life’s journey, what gives us pleasure and happiness will often change. Some things will change because of life circumstances, but that allows us to discover and find a new sources of pleasure.

What I have also found is the "happiness factor" at my life stage is more from simple things now than it used to be when I was in my thirties. It no longer seems to require changing myself and changing the world and pushing myself to complete tasks. Now it is more about just “being”, like just being more aware of simple things around me; like breathing in and out, in and out. Even that simple movement of life is kind of amazing. Something that uneventful and routine can now even make me smile.

If you enjoy self help books, stories of introspection, biographies, or are trying to figure out what to do in your life, this will be a book you will probably enjoy.