Friday, September 27, 2013

The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin - Review

The Happiness Project: Or Why I Spent a Year Trying to Sing in the Morning, Clean My Closets, Fight Right, Read Aristotle, and Generally Have More Fun

Rating:  5 Stars

Description:  Gretchen Rubin had an epiphany on the bus one morning that although her life was great she wasn't as happy as she should be.  She spent a year trying to change that and this book is the result.

Genre:  Self-Help

My Impression:  Despite the 5 star rating I actually have mixed feelings about this book.  To start with it wasn't what I was expecting.  The back says it is a memoir/self-help.  I was really expecting more of a memoir and this book was firmly in the self-help square.  Also, I really didn't like Gretchen or her husband.  These are not people I would want to go to coffee with or chat with during kid activities.  I've met a few people that Gretchen reminds me of and I tend to do my best to avoid them. That being said when I put all that aside and focused on what the book was actually saying the impact in my life was huge.  There was nothing mind blowing and many of her discoveries I'd already figured out about myself (in particular the living in an atmosphere of growth).  However, this format really gave my husband and myself a foundation to really start talking about what we could change in our own lives to enjoy it more and not be buried under the endless tasks of home ownership and child responsibilities.  The chapters that really spoke the most to me were the chapters on fun and money.  While I don't intend to reread this book I did take notes on the points that seemed most important to me and I do plan to read her next book.  I've also noticed that by just thinking about how to be happier and talking about how to be happier I actually am happier and more enthusiastic about what's going on around me.  So even though the actual reading experience was more text book than escape and even though Gretchen herself annoyed me quite a bit the fact that this book made me feel happier and lighter earns it 5 stars from me.

Would I Read More of this Series/Author?: Yes

Would I Recommend this Book?:  Yes

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