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The happiness project : or why I spent a year trying to sing in the morning, cle
Gretchen Rubin
Adult Nonfiction BF575.H27 R83 2009

Comments  Summary  Reviews  Author Notes

From Publishers' Weekly:

Rubin is not an unhappy woman: she has a loving husband, two great kids and a writing career in New York City. Still, she could-and, arguably, should-be happier. Thus, her methodical (and bizarre) happiness project: spend one year achieving careful, measurable goals in different areas of life (marriage, work, parenting, self-fulfillment) and build on them cumulatively, using concrete steps (such as, in January, going to bed earlier, exercising better, getting organized, and "act[ing] more energetic"). By December, she's striving bemusedly to keep increasing happiness in every aspect of her life. The outcome is good, not perfect (in accordance with one of her "Secrets of Adulthood": "Don't let the perfect be the enemy of the good"), but Rubin's funny, perceptive account is both inspirational and forgiving, and sprinkled with just enough wise tips, concrete advice and timely research (including all those other recent books on happiness) to qualify as self-help. Defying self-help expectations, however, Rubin writes with keen senses of self and narrative, balancing the personal and the universal with a light touch. Rubin's project makes curiously compulsive reading, which is enough to make any reader happy. (Dec.) Copyright 2009 Reed Business Information.

From Library Journal:

For this chatty and intriguing little book, Rubin, a lawyer-turned-writer (Forty Ways To Look at Winston Churchill), undertook a yearlong quest for happiness. A "Resolution Chart" with specific activities for each month (e.g., "Ask for help") helped her define happiness and become happier with her very good life, as did interesting facts from her scholarly research (though there are no footnotes or formal bibliography). Peppering the text are quotes from a vast array of people who have considered happiness, including Aristotle, St. TherEse, and Viktor Frankl. Verdict This whole process might have come off as frivolously self-centered but for the excellent points Rubin highlights. Although the excerpts from her blog ( begin to feel like filler, librarians will particularly like how she loves her local library, and self-helpers will be fascinated by her process.-Margaret Cardwell, Memphis, TN (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

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