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 Have More Fun

Paperback - 2011
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On the outside, Gretchen Rubin had it all--a good marriage, healthy children and a successful career--but something was missing. Determined to end that nagging feeling, she set out on a year-long quest to learn how to better enjoy the life she already had. Each month, Gretchen pursued a different set of resolutions--go to sleep earlier, tackle a nagging task, bring people together, take time to be silly. She read everything from classical philosophy to cutting-edge scientific studies, from Winston Churchill to Oprah, developing her own definition of happiness and a plan for how to achieve it. She kept track of which resolutions worked and which didn't, sharing her stories and collecting those of others. Bit by bit, she began to appreciate and amplify the happiness in her life. With a wicked sense of humour and sharp insight, Gretchen's story will inspire readers to embrace the pleasure in their lives.--From publisher description.
Published: New York : Harper, 2011.
Edition: 1st Harper pbk.
ISBN: 9780061583261
006158326X
Branch Call Number: 158 RUB
Characteristics: xviii, 315 p. ;,21 cm.

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AL_ANNA May 19, 2017

A light story written and read by Gretchen Rubin, telling about the year long project she did to increase her happiness. You can follow her structured plan to create your own personal happiness project. Don't wait, "The days are long, but the years are short."

d
darladoodles
Mar 31, 2017

Weirdly enough, just reading this book increased my happiness. I really connected to Gretchen and her quest. The way she approached it resonated with me and I am more aware of how I have made recent changes that have increased my happiness as well as simple ways I can have happier days in the future.

The book is broken up into a chapter for each month. Every month had a theme, so the flow of the chapters made it very readable. Since I was reading this as part of a book group at my library, I started taking notes from the very first chapter. That made me happy as I do tend to enjoy collecting tidbits of information and famous quotes as Gretchen did from childhood in her Blank Books.

Two resolutions really touched me as wonderful reminders for my family life: "Give proofs of love" and "Be a treasure house of happy memories."

Highly recommended!

p
padocarl
Jan 14, 2017

Really liked this one. Walked away with quite a few nuggets of tangible ways to add some extra happiness to my life (especially from the "energy", "marriage" and "family/ relationships" chapters)!

s
spiridiona
Dec 07, 2016

If you are looking to live a more fulfilling life and wanting to add more happiness to your every day, this book may give you some inspiration to achieve that. However, if you are looking more for a guide towards that purpose, this is not the book for you. It is filled with the author's very personal and systematic way of achieving happiness in her life.
It's an easy book to read. It can get boring at some points but overall I enjoyed it.

karolka Oct 26, 2016

I really tried to like this book but.... I just couldn't !! No for me, not worth it! So many others, way better than this one...

k
kwsmith
Aug 08, 2016

Very few of us can take a lengthy time-out from life to Eat, Pray, Love. Gretchen Rubin's very well researched book, The Happiness Project, offers a simpler alternative by suggesting numerous small ways to boost our happiness without making dramatic life changes. I agree with many of Gretchen's thoughtful suggestions and her slice-of-family-life anecdotes will appeal to many parents with young children. On the other hand, Gretchen Rubin is an ambitious young Yale-educated lawyer who married into an extremely wealthy and very politically connected family. At the start of the book, she admits to marrying her perfect soul-mate, having healthy and happy children, and having the resources to work in her dream job (writer). Perhaps your personal happiness obstacles are somewhat more challenging than Gretchen's?

j
josiahabarber
May 27, 2016

This was a very quick, enjoyable read. Rubin first starts out by creating her ten commandments, principles she uses to guide her life, and the foundation of her 12 resolutions--one for each month. What struck me was the value of writing down items, as that brings an additional level of commitment and a better way to track what's happening. If others were to undertake this project, it would look different for everyone. One of Rubin's guiding principles is, in fact, that what one person finds fun, or what makes one person happy, may not make another person happy. This is an excellent point to keep in mind in life, and while reading the book. There were also just little tidbits that I thought would be interesting to integrate in my life. It definitely gave me some ideas of writing done professional and personal goals, though.

j
joe24642
Mar 20, 2016

Take time to be silly.

b
bheat4141
Mar 01, 2016

Echoing some other comments, it is a useful read, but mostly found myself picking out select nuggets of inspiration, as a whole it was not always applicable or smooth to get through.

It accomplished its purpose for me, but I feel like there must be a more effective way to convey these ideas and principles in a more easly consumed manner. Perhaps this concept was best consumed on the author's blog rather than in the form of a novel.

s
sfbrianmcdonald
May 31, 2015

I had to stop reading this book in the second chapter, as I was so annoyed by the author, who comes across as shallow, whiny, insecure, and narcissistic. Nothing but drivel.

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garden_girl May 10, 2011

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