The Happiness Project Book Review

It’s been a lovely, relaxing weekend. Almost over but not quite. The weather is unbelievable gorgeous. I snuck away to the rooftop yesterday to read, pray, think and watch my handsome man mow the yard. And then today I walk through the muddy grass to the swing in the back yard so I could sit and think some more. My feet got all mucky and gross but it was 100% worth it.

I’ve also spent a large portion of it either rereading Gretchen Rubin’s  The Happiness Project or mulling and contemplating over what I’ve read. It’s made me extremely introspective the past few days. Such a fantastic book for making you question and consider all the different angles!

I read The Happiness Project a couple years ago and loved everything about it. This second time through has made me appreciate it all the more. It is just chock full of practical hints and tips and is thoroughly relatable.

I’m about to work my last shift at my current job. I was able to put in my two weeks notice recently and am going to be starting a new job either at the end of April or the beginning of May. It’s a pretty significant change which means I’m thinking and pondering and sorting through emotions. This was the best possible time to pick up and read through this book again.

I’m still deciding exactly what I want my book review posts to look like. This first one is going to be a bit rambley. I don’t mind. I’m figuring out what works for me.

One of the principles or personal rules Gretchen mentions over and over again is how incredibly important it is to be you. Not what you think you should be. Not what you wish you were. But who you really truly are.

That really struck a chord.

I must be Emily. Not the Emily I think other people want or expect me to be. Not the Emily I suppose I ought to be. But the Emily I actually am. That doesn’t mean never growing, learning, or changing. I’ve read it as accepting the things you like and dislike and not feeling as if you must apologize. Owning those parts of you that are inherent and unchangeable. The things that make you who you are.

Another section that’s stuck with me is her bit on clutter clearing. I’ve read quite a bit on minimalism and getting rid of things that don’t make you happy. But reading about her going through her closet and eliminating the things that weren’t being used or were too old and worn out has made me consider my own wardrobe.

I’ve done so much to cull and either donate or trash things that I didn’t really need. Now I want to go through it all again and consider the things that I wish I would wear or use but don’t because they really don’t fit with my lifestyle at the moment and are therefore causing me guilt and to feel a sense of obligation.

Most of all I want to come up with my own set of personal commandments. The rules that I want to strive to live by. I want to work on being happier by eating well, exercising, spending time with people, being mindful and enjoying the little things, and laughing as much as possible all with the perspective of doing what works for me. Not basing it off of anyone else or what I think someone else wants of me.

-Em

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