I just happened to pick up The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin at the airport when I realized I forgot to bring reading materials (an absolute must for me) and it has been an amazing source of inspiration for me lately. I am not normally a self-help book kind of person but the tone of this book is more “everyone can have a happier life” as opposed to “you need to do this to be happy”—a good thing because I don’t particularly like having someone tell me what to do.
Rubin writes in a way that is very straightforward and easy to understand with lots of lists (my favorite!) and ideas for staying committed to your goals. For her research, she spent each month for a year working on a different resolution and recorded the trials, successes, and even failures she faced along the way. Each resolution focused on a specific aspect of her life, but can easily be adapted to fit anyone’s life.
The way that Rubin writes about happiness makes it sound like a lifestyle that one can choose and this is something that really resonates with me. You cannot always control the things that happen in the world around you, but you can control the way you deal with the issues as they come and the attitude you choose to have. Also, if you are honest with yourself about the things that you like or dislike and what you are good at or not so good at, you can begin to play to your strengths and start reaping the rewards of working toward the goals that will bring you the most happiness.
She also keeps a blog, happiness-project.com, with directions and support for creating and maintaining your own happiness project, which I am just beginning—I will continue to update you on the progress of my project.
Her 2nd book, Happiness at Home is set to release on September 4, 2012. I can’t wait!