Happiness is serious business for Gretchen Rubin

  • Raw: Obamas Attend Easter Service

    Raw: Obamas Attend Easter Service

    Raw: Obamas Attend Easter Service

    President Barack Obama and his family attended Easter services in celebration this Sunday. (April 20) …

  • Raw: Pope Greets Easter Tourists on Popemobile

    Raw: Pope Greets Easter Tourists on Popemobile

    Raw: Pope Greets Easter Tourists on Popemobile

    Pope Francis rode out on the popemobile Sunday to greet more than 150,000 tourists in St. Peter's Square for Easter Sunday, Christianity's most joyous and hopeful day. (April 20) …

  • Raw: Easter Morning Delivery for Space Station

    Raw: Easter Morning Delivery for Space Station

    Raw: Easter Morning Delivery for Space Station

    Space station astronauts got a special Easter treat: a cargo ship full of supplies. The SpaceX company's cargo ship, Dragon, spent two days chasing the International Space Station following its launch from Cape Canaveral. (April 20) …

"Happier at Home: Kiss More, Jump More, Abandon a Project, Read Samuel Johnson, and My Other Experiments in the Practice of Everyday Life" (Crown Archetype), by Gretchen Rubin

Gretchen Rubin tapped into something with her best-selling book, "The Happiness Project," about finding ways to feel more satisfied with the life you have. Her new sequel, "Happier at Home," takes a closer look at how to improve areas that usually mean the most — bonding with family, creating a comfortable living space and utilizing time management.

Fans of Rubin's first book should enjoy "Happier at Home," which offers some new solutions for old problems and useful tips to make changes that cultivate quality of life.

Her latest project spanned nine months, with each chapter focusing on a different goal. Rubin rejects vague platitudes like "love yourself" or "be optimistic." The book offers concrete actions to elevate moods and behavior. Suggestions like singing in the morning, acting the way you want to feel, or mentally making the positive argument instead of dwelling on the negative are small remedies that could reap big results.

Some fixes are so simple they seem obvious — like breathing in a favorite smell or knocking before entering a room — yet most people are too busy to take the time.

Rubin advocates de-cluttering and encourages ways to incorporate enjoyable objects into living and working environments to increase productivity. She concludes that it isn't the amount of possessions she has, but whether she's engaged with the objects that counts.

To create closer bonds with family she started traditions like holiday breakfasts, special outings with her daughter, and developed a project with her sister. But not all experiments were successful. When Rubin tried to plan monthly adventures with her husband, he wasn't interested.

Those stories make Rubin more relatable. Her thoughts on the hard work necessary to keep a marriage happy may also move readers. "It isn't enough to love; we must prove it," says Rubin.

The book makes valuable points about how technology has created new work that's never done. There will always be another email or social media post, and smartphones and laptops have made it possible to work anywhere, anytime. Rubin warns the Internet can be a constant distraction, a dangerous form of procrastination, and can hinder your flow of ideas and leach contentment.

A few months into the project, Rubin admits slacking on several goals, slipping back into old habits and feeling down. But then she hauls out her "bag of happiness cures," including reading about 18th-century writer Samuel Johnson.

This is where she may lose some readers. Describing herself and her husband as "conscientious" people who work hard and spend a lot of time on computers, she says they rarely drink or take vacation. Her intellectual, methodical approach to happiness often makes it feel like a chore. She regularly quotes great philosophers and writers, and uses myriad examples, evoking a research paper. Once a Yale legal scholar and Supreme Court justice clerk, it's no wonder some of Rubin's exacting, dry language reads like a law brief.

For Rubin, happiness is serious business, and although she shares personal anecdotes, her plain writing lacks conversational style and humor.

Rubin says she often wishes she could forget her resolutions but knows she's more fulfilled when she sticks to them. She found her project not only increased her happiness but also the happiness of her family. One of the book's themes is that happiness is different for everyone and you have to be true to yourself to find it.

But first, you have to buy the book.




Follow @YahooMalaysia on LINE for daily entertainment updates.

  • Kumpulan pop 1990-an popular
    Hana Ahmad - Tupai
    Kumpulan pop 1990-an popular 20 hours ago
    Kumpulan pop 1990-an popular

    Dunia muzik tahun 1990-an dipenuhi dengan kumpulan pop lelaki dan wanita seperti Spice Girls, Backstreet Boys, Hanson, Boyzone dan banyak lagi! …

  • Hans Isaac bakal arah filem antarabangsa
    Azizah Saleh - Tupai
    Hans Isaac bakal arah filem antarabangsa 20 hours ago
    Hans Isaac bakal arah filem antarabangsa

    Pengarah serta penerbit berbakat, Hans bakal mengarahkan filem berbahasa Inggeris. …

  • Dari Hallyu ke Hollywood
    Syahida Kamarudin - Tupai
    Dari Hallyu ke Hollywood Sat, Apr 19, 2014 12:16 AM MYT
    Dari Hallyu ke Hollywood

    Para pelakon Korea Selatan yang berjaya menempa nama dalam industri filem Hollywood. …

  • Tori Spelling 'fighting for marriage'
    Cover Media
    Tori Spelling 'fighting for marriage' Sat, Apr 19, 2014 2:30 PM MYT
    Tori Spelling 'fighting for marriage'

    Tori Spelling is said to believe she can cure Dean McDermott's "cheating ways". …

  • Nicki Minaj 'wants wedding in a hot tub'
    Cover Media
    Nicki Minaj 'wants wedding in a hot tub' Sat, Apr 19, 2014 11:00 AM MYT
    Nicki Minaj 'wants wedding in a hot tub'

    Nicki Minaj reportedly plans to have fire breathers and "naked performers" at her wedding. …

  • Tidur lena dengan SleepPhones
    Azwa Iela - Tupai
    Tidur lena dengan SleepPhones 20 hours ago
    Tidur lena dengan SleepPhones

    SleepPhones dapat membantu anda untuk mengatasi masalah-masalah yang tidak diingini ketika tidur. …

  • Kebaikan air kacang soya
    Azwa Iela - Tupai
    Kebaikan air kacang soya Sat, Apr 19, 2014 12:18 AM MYT
    Kebaikan air kacang soya

    Ramai yang mungkin suka minum air kacang soya, namun ramaikah yang tahu akan khasiat atau kebaikan kacang soya ini? …

  • Tips penjagaan bawah lengan
    Azwa Iela - Tupai
    Tips penjagaan bawah lengan Fri, Apr 18, 2014 11:20 AM MYT
    Tips penjagaan bawah lengan

    Di sini kami ingin berkongsi dengan golongan wanita di luar sana beberapa tips berguna untuk mendapatkan bawah lengan yang cerah. …

  • Rubin 'Hurricane' Carter, U.S. boxer famous in folk song, dies at 76
    Cameron French and Emily Flitter - Reuters
    Rubin 'Hurricane' Carter, U.S. boxer famous in folk song, dies at 76 24 minutes ago
    Rubin 'Hurricane' Carter, U.S. boxer famous in folk song, dies at 76

    By Cameron French and Emily Flitter TORONTO/NEW YORK (Reuters) - Former U.S. professional boxer Rubin "Hurricane" Carter, who spent 19 years in prison for murder and then was released after it was determined he did not get a fair trial, died on Sunday at the age of 76, according to his friend and caretaker John Artis. Carter, considered a folk hero by many and immortalized in film and song, had been battling prostate cancer for nearly three years, Artis said. He died at home in Toronto, …

  • Dapatkah Pelat Dipulihkan?
    Yahoo Newsroom
    Dapatkah Pelat Dipulihkan? Thu, Sep 19, 2013 1:54 PM MYT
    Dapatkah Pelat Dipulihkan?

    Pelat bukanlah disebabkan oleh lidah yang pendek. Apakah punca pelat? …

Comments on Yahoo pages are subject to our link to Comments Guidelines. You are responsible for any content that you post. Yahoo is not responsible or liable in any way for comments posted by its users. Yahoo does not in any way endorse or support comments made by its users.