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The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin Review

By Melanie Ethridge on Jan 08, 2017

It's probably safe to say we all want to be happy. Author Gretchen Rubin is no different, and she wrote The Happiness Project, a book that spent more than two years on The New York Times bestseller list, to chronicle her attempts at living a happier life. Rubin admits that she wasn't unhappy, per se—she just believed each day could be a little bit lighter, a little bit more fun.


Rubin's experiment extended over the course of a year. She began in January, and used each month to focus specifically on one area of her life: Vitality (Boost Energy), Marriage (Remember Love), Work (Aim Higher), Parenthood (Lighten Up), Leisure (Be Serious About Play), Friendship (Make Time for Friends), Money (Buy Some Happiness), Eternity (Contemplate the Heavens), Books (Pursue a Passion), Mindfulness (Pay Attention), and Attitude (Keep a Contented Heart). December was focused on happineThe ss in general, where she applied “Boot Camp Perfect” and incorporated everything she'd done throughout the last 11 months.

Have you read The Happiness Project? If so, leave your review below and help others in the Growth Advance Community know if it's a good fit to help them on their growth journey.

Looking to read The Happiness Project? You can order it from Amazon by clicking right here. 

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Amanda Sides says:
Jan 08, 2017
I read this book somewhat warily. Happiness is personal, I thought, and fairly obvious: do more of what makes you happy, do less of what doesn't. What could she possibly tell me that I didn't already know (whether or not I always put it into practice)? While Rubin does mention that, she explores specifically how we can do it—and I ended up taking away several simple tactics that I've been incorporating into my life. Never put off a task that can be done in less than a minute. I can't tell you how many times I've thrown my coat over a chair—even though it takes less than a minute to hang it up properly. Same goes for taking out the garbage (which is much easier when it's not overflowing), rolling up my yoga mat (it's not a rug), and putting away my shoes. Have a go-to indoor game and a go-to outdoor game. This was advice from a long-married couple Rubin spoke to in an effort to understand what makes a happy marriage. My partner and I already have our go-to indoor game (gin), but now I'd like to get us settled on an outdoor game, as well. (Maybe bocce!) “We are happy when we are growing.” W. B. Yeats I've felt this to be true throughout my life, but it's nice to have the little reminder for the future: when I start feeling frustrated, I can remind myself to find something that challenges me. Luckily, I have Growth Advance to help me with that, too! I also really connected with Rubin's lists: her 12 Commandments, Secrets of Adulthood, and Splendid Truths. I found myself making my own similar lists, which I have found very affirming and clarifying. One of my True Rules is “People want to be heard.” Simply writing this down helps me be a better listener. Another is “Do it now,” my personal reminder not to put off anything—a writing assignment, a dreaded chore, or a trip to India—that can be done now. What do you like to do for fun? Rubin made a point here: we have to identify what we like to do—not what we think we should like to do because it sounds cool. This was probably the most powerful idea of all for me. It seems like I should like camping, for example, but you know what? I just don't. So even though all the cool kids think camping is fun, I've got to admit to myself that it's really not that much fun for me. Maybe you're already happy, or you think you know what happiness is. Still, read this book. You never know which little suggestions will resonate with you and help you take your own happiness to the next level. Plus, Rubin's writing is light and fun—it's an enjoyable read.
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