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on 23 August 2015
I'll start by saying I have never had any interest in "self help" books. However, I was drawn to this as it promised a look at the more academic side (she seems to have read much of the current research into theories of happiness), and just for the novelty of stunt nonfiction.

As some other reviewers have pointed out, the book can be over self-congratulatory, and if you try and read large chunks of it in one go she will most likely drive you crazy.

On the other hand, this book addresses the state that the majority of people seem to find themselves in - not overly sad, but not overly happy. It provides a novel way to increase your awareness of the aspects of your life which bring you most enjoyment / frustration, and then details the year in which the author tried to readdress the balance of these in her own life. She doesn't claim to have all the answers, and details her failures as well as her successes. She acknowledges that her methods may not work for you, but gives an example of how to incorporate small changes into your every day life.

This book might not change your life, but if you are looking for inspiration or an example of how to instigate a change, it gives pretty thorough guidance.
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on 26 November 2017
If you are married with kids then you can relate, if not, it's hard to follow along with this project. Particularly, if not having family and kids in your life is the cause of your unhappiness.
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on 7 August 2015
I have to admit that after reading one or two of the reviews of this book I started reading with a preconceived notion that the author was just another writer who was "jumping on the band wagon" of the self help, how-to-be-happy genre. I'm happy to report that I was wrong. This is a fabulous book with A LOT of content. I particularly enjoyed Gretchen's willingness to admit her failures as well as her successes, and to present her family warts and all.

Will this book make you happy? It very well might help you along the road. Your life will be different to Gretchen's, as mine is, but the lessons are very easy to pick out and there's a lot of supporting material on-line from the author's blog and other sites. You'll be glad to know there is no on-line course or seminar to attend at the end of the book, so you can rest easy. There is an on-line community to engage with if you find yourself wanting to take things further.

Gretchen is clearly a successful and professional individual and a talented writer. The book is well organized, well structured, and very well written. It's an easy read, but is packed with info, and is great on detail. I'm glad I read it, and happy I was wrong in my initial impressions. :-)
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on 12 February 2015
I love this book and used it as the basis of my own happiness project which I wrote up in a big notebook and come back and work on every three months or so. Gretchen's style of project is great - she works on the little things that make you appreciate life more and looks at the little things you do daily that can ruin the atmosphere in your home (like nagging or not spending time together). I loved that Gretchen looked at her own flaws and that her project wasn't material or about saving money....her project made me think about how an absence of music in my life wasn't making me as joyful as I could be, and that I wanted to spend more time with friends.

The great thing is that this book isn't a 'YOU MUST DO THIS' kind of book...instead Gretchen highlights her own very personal project, and it made me feel very comfortable about doing things my way not just her way.
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on 26 January 2018
This book was very useful and made me more aware of myself and my "happiness habits". I do find it easy to be critical and negative more so than being positive. It is hard to be light all the time.
I'll probably read this again soon. There's so much in here and it seems a long time since I read the first few chapters. The great thing about rereading is you get to develop new thoughts and see things differently based on the fact that your life has moved on from when you last read it. That's what I find anyway.
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on 14 January 2016
I am a big fan on the happiness project. This book taught me so many things to understand happiness and ultimately how to improve my own happiness and its not all about meditation! Hurrah! I loved that the ideas were so simple to follow and although it may be ambitious to spend a whole year on this type of project for most of us, there are plenty of small ideas you can take away and try and home. It was well researched, well structured and well written. I highly recommend this book and Gretchen's Happiness podcast which is full of more great and simple ideas to improve your own happiness.
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on 28 September 2014
I did enjoy this book and definitely felt happier because of it. The author is clearly highly educated and did occasionally use words and phrases that would have benefited from further clarification at time. I have passed some of the wisdom found relating to the children to my daughter as anything that will make a parents life more harmonious is always a good thing. I have now subscribed to the author's 'Hapiness at Home 21 Day Relationship Challenge' to be found on her website and am already reaping the benefits and it's only Day 5!
This is not the type of book I would normally read but I am glad I did.
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on 27 April 2015
I love this book. I'd forgotten how much, having misplaced my original copy its been awhile - I got a download second time around...hoping I won't loose it again! Especially as I am sure I'll want to read it again...and again... TBH I doubt I'll follow many of the happiness monthly resolutions etc etc (I'm sooooo lazy!) BUT I really enjoyed reading it ( I'm simple to please as well as lazy!!) ...highly recommend this book to others --- and I am sure I'll read it again sometime time too...
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on 21 January 2018
I really enjoyed this book, it took me a long while to get through as I was going through a hard time with mental health. I needed to figure out how to make myself happier too... Although Gretchen isn't the cure for depression, her want to be happier sure is inspiring.

Gretchin's need to organise and keep track of her resolutions is very alike my need to stay organised and have resolutions (something that got lost during these hard months).

I recommend this book to anyone who wants to be happier, even if you are perfectly happy.
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on 6 March 2013
A very good friend highly recommended this book and I've not been disappointed. I've enjoyed reading it so much that I'm loathe to finish the last chapter as it means I'll have to say goodbye! That said, I think this is a book that I'll quite happily reread in a year or so. It's more of a life guide that you can keep going back to than something you just read once. Really great, practical things you can build into your own life to help make yourself happier. It's less about life altering changes like we saw in Eat, Pray, Love (although I loved that book) but about little ways you can change your perception of your world to bring the best out of it.
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