Happier at home

Cover: Happier At HomeThere really is no place like it, and with Gretchen Rubin’s help we are all about to become even Happier at Home.

You might remember Ms Rubin as the author of the hugely successful The Happiness Project. In that book she tackled her overall life happiness. Her book took the self-help world by storm, even though her approach is not like falling off the nearest log, and in no way subscribes to the “To-day is the first day of the rest of your life” school of thought. Ms Rubin’s makes you work for your breakthroughs and we seem to love her for it.

In this, her next offering, Ms Rubin focuses her attention on being happier at home. There are over 600 titles at Christchurch City Libraries that purport to help us become happier, wherever we are. Yet Gretchen Rubin’s books rank amongst the most popular of that genre. I’m only really going to start worrying about her if her next book is entitled Happiest at Work, and even then I’ll probably read it.

So, why have we taken to her in such a  big way?

It’s that “happier” that is the key. Because Rubin is already happy at home. She has a supportive husband, two lovely daughters, a very good job, no money problems, is more than passably good looking and appears to be in robust good health. Some of you nay-sayers out there will already be thinking: “V for Vomit – she is altogether too perfect for my poor tattered little life.” (In which case you may prefer How to be Happy, Dammit  or the palate cleansing The Antidote: Happiness for People Who Can’t Stand Positive Thinking).

But think about it: if we are totally honest with ourselves,we really aren’t all that badly off. But, like Rubin, we just yearn for more. And who better to turn to than someone who has already got most of what we want?

Eventually – after you’ve read both books – Rubin boils it all down to eight “Splendid Truths” (I know, sometimes you do just want to give her a bit of a slap!). But I’m not going to spill my gut here by telling you what they are, because, since reading her books, one of my personal happiness projects is to become better friends with silence (this is fancy-pantsy-speak for shutting-up), in the hope that I will no longer have that desperate need to fill all conversational pauses.

I don’t know if it’s going to make me any happier at home, but so far no one else is complaining!

3 thoughts on “Happier at home

  1. Allison Broster 25 January 2013 / 8:52 pm

    And now I have a confession to make: I tried, I really did, to like Gretchen Rubin’s first book. She did carry me along on a wave of “this is it” for the first couple of chapters. Then it all began to seem a little forced and Polyanna-ish. That’s my inner curmudgeon speaking, I know. Bring on “The Antidote”! Must find a copy!

    • robertafsmith 25 January 2013 / 8:57 pm

      I know exactly what you mean, but I skim read her and then I go and buy stationery and make lists and things. I’m also going to try The Antidote, but it is sooooo much easier to be negative than it is to be positive, so I wonder about it, I really do.

      • Allison Broster 25 January 2013 / 9:02 pm

        You’re absolutely right. Always my downfall. But wait, buying stationery, you said? Bingo!

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