Thursday, March 14, 2013

seventy two

Happiness


I finished reading The Happiness Project today, and I have to say I'd recommend it.  
I'd even recommend buying it.  It's full of practical ideas, lots of research, and various nuggets of wisdom.  
I can even imagine reading it again.

But I have two caveats:  child care and money.

 Had I read this book a few years ago, when my kids were smaller and my time even less my own, I might have found myself unhappier from having read it.  It isn't a matter (for me) of finding passions, it has been finding the ability to pursue them.  I don't have in-laws around the corner.  Or a nanny.  Or any sort of reliable baby sitter.  Or an endless supply of money.  And most of my friends don't either. (Granted, I don't live in NYC)  Most of my friends are just trying to find the time to sit down long enough for a hot cup of coffee amidst the needs of their kids and family. 

I found this book was particularly helpful for me as I approach a new phase of life, but...I couldn't help looking at it from the perspective of a harried mom with young kids (which the author is...sort of), wondering how she managed to clean out a closet without the inevitable frustration of the kids having trashed another room while she was working.  Or how she managed to host book clubs, meet for coffee, head out to the hypnotist and take a week long drawing class?  Who was dragging her kids around to soccer?  Doing the laundry?  Making dinner?  I don't think it's a matter of priorities; it may be a matter of privilege. But it may also be that she held out all the good stuff for the sequel Happier At Home.

And yes, I plan to read it.


2 comments:

Nicki said...

child care and money and extra hours in a day - the caveats of life to be sure. I have not read this book but might have to give it a look.

Amanda said...

I really liked that book, but I agree there were some things that I was like "um, how did you do that?" my thing was the month she took to write a novel. that is HARD and takes a lot of time. she made it sound so easy.