I tend to take a lot of notes when reading a non-fiction book, especially if it’s something that I can gain some kind of knowledge from. Such was the case when reading Gretchen Rubin’s The Happiness Project. I used my little Post-it Flags to mark passages, quotes, and references to other books, movies, blogs, etc. Once I was done with the book, I went through all of these passages so that I could comment on them or make a list of items to look into. I found that I related to a lot of what was discussed in this book. Rather than bore you with one really long post, I thought I’d break up my notes. The next several posts will discuss various topics found within the book. Once I have done that, I will explain how my Me Binder will be transformed into my Happiness Binder. There won’t be too much change from what it already is. But I the focus will be more on appreciating life in general and all that it includes.
Rubin discusses why she started her happiness project, and I have to say that although I don’t have children (as of yet), I have had this feeling before. She says that she was suffering from “midlife malaise—a recurrent sense of discontent and almost a feeling of disbelief.” I have often felt this, going about my days that basically are a repeat, one after another, the same thing day in, day out. It’s not a bad life by any means, but sometimes I wonder if things will ever get more exciting. My life is pretty much planned at this point—I’m married, I own a house, I love my job. Aside from deciding if I want children or not, all the major decisions seem to be made. There’s no big-event-anticipation left, at least at this point.
In addition, I recently have had to face some difficult times, which has shadowed pretty much everything else in my life. It’s been a constant struggle for the past several months and probably will be for some time to come. Yet, there is so much in my life to be thankful for and to be happy about. I just need to remember those things, to keep them in the forefront of my mind on a daily basis, and not allow them to get buried underneath sad and frustrated feelings and emotions I often find myself experiencing. Though, experiencing those feelings is also a big part of life, so I can’t deny myself that either.
These are the reasons that I decided to start my own happiness project. As Rubin states in the book, everyone’s project will be different. Mine won’t look like or take the exact structure of hers, but I couldn’t have started this without her book. Many of her points are the very things I need to focus on.
It really is the little things in life that make it worth living and be happy about.