The Happiness Project
Posted December 23, 2010on:
I love to read. I typically read fiction as a sort of ‘mental getaway,’ whereas I usually associate nonfiction books with grad school. Once I’ve started a good book, I tend to get a little obsessed: I’ll spend any spare minute reading a page or chapter, but I love to finish a good book in one sitting. Don’t even get me started on a good book series – you won’t see me for weeks!
My latest book obsession is a little different: it’s called The Happiness Project. I borrowed the nonfiction title from a friend on a whim. At first I was a little skeptical about reading a book ‘without a story’; but as I progressed through the book, I couldn’t put it down.
Now, if you know me, you may be groaning. “Does she really need to be any happier?” Yes, I’m a positive and upbeat person by nature and yes, I do need to be happier. And so do you.
The premise of the book: We’re in danger of wasting our lives. The author has this epiphany on a New York bus. Was she focusing on the things that really matter, or was she just letting time pass her by? And why are you always left thinking of the ‘good old days’ – why can’t we realize that today is a ‘good day’?
The book is a great compilation of happiness wisdom of the ages, some you may already know, some you may not realize you already know, and some that you really should know!
Ultimately, she comes up with her Four Splendid truths. They are:
1) If I want to be happier, I need to look at my life and think about feeling good, feeling bad, and feeling right in an atmosphere of growth.
2) One of the best ways to make myself happy is to make other people happy. One of the best ways to make other people happy is to be happy myself.
3) The days are long but the years are short.
4) If I think I’m happier, I am happier.
You’ll find you have your own truths, and your own commandments to live by. Here are a few of mine:
- Say thank you more than you should
- Pay it forward
- Say hello to passers-by
- Just breathe
- And, taking a tip from the author: Be Brandi.
If you don’t have time to read the book, check out the Happiness Project Blog. There’s plenty of short stories you can draw happiness from there!
What are your commandments you live by?
P.S. Yes, I know it has been 144 days since my last blog post. Possible New Year’s resolution that will make me happier?