The true secret of happiness lies in the taking a genuine interest in all the details of daily life. – William Morris, “The Aims of Art”
This quote is how Gretchen Rubin’s book Happier at Home begins.
This quote is also how I immediately knew I was in the right place, because I have a intense interest in the details of everyday life and have for as long as I can remember. (See the tagline up there at the top of the page under the blog title?)
How wonderful that Mr. Morris thinks that this interest is the true secret to happiness.
Happier at Home is the follow-up to Gretchen’s book, The Happiness Project, which was a #1 New York Times bestseller. Gretchen describes a happiness project as “an approach to the practice of everyday life.” It involves three steps:
- Identify what brings you joy, satisfaction, and engagement, and also what brings you guilt, anger, boredom, and remorse.
- Make resolutions based on concrete actions that will boost your happiness.
- Keep those resolutions.
The Happiness Project tackled big themes, like pursuing a passion, contemplating the heavens, and keeping a contented heart.
Happier at Home focuses on things closer to, well, home. Some of the chapters include Possessions (Find a True Simplicity), Interior Design (Renovate Myself), and Neighborhood (Embrace Here).
One of the things that makes me happy is getting to hear authors talk about their lives and their books. It’s why I like passing the time with C-SPAN’s Book TV on the weekends. And it’s why going to the National Book Festival is on my to-do list.
In Kansas City, we have a great, independent bookstore, Rainy Day Books, that regularly brings in authors for appearances.
Through Rainy Day Books I’ve been able to see and hear such varied authors as Jodi Picoult, The Pioneer Woman, Ina Garten (The Barefoot Contessa), Jen Lancaster, and, most recently, Gretchen Rubin.
The house was packed for Gretchen because, although she lives in New York now, she’s from Kansas City. I enjoyed her event, as I do all of these appearances, and while I was there I picked up a book for myself and one to give away to one of you.
Happier at Home Book Giveaway
I’m choosing the new year as the time to hold this giveaway, because I think January is the second most natural time to start reading Happier at Home.
I say second most natural, because the first would be September, as Gretchen’s book is divided into nine chapters that follow the months of the school year.
But there really is no wrong time to read a book like this, and, as Gretchen points out in the book, “September is the other January.”
I don’t plan to read Happier at Home all at once. I don’t know if it will play out at a chapter a month, the way the book is organized, or something shorter or longer, but I do expect to keep it on my nightstand and revisit it all year long. And I’m hoping that the themes will inspire some blog posts.
So I hope you’ll enter the giveaway below. Or borrow Happier at Home from the library or order it from amazon so we can read along together.
The giveaway starts today and will run through Sunday night, January 6, at 10pm CST. At that time, I’ll choose a winner from the comments, using Random.org.
The winner will receive a new, hardback copy of Happier at Home, a Happier at Home bookmark, and a Happier at Home tote bag to carry it all around in.
To enter, all you have to do is leave a comment on this post and let me know which of the following chapters from Happier at Home sounds the most interesting to you:
- Possessions (Find a True Simplicity)
- Marriage (Prove My Love)
- Parenthood (Pay Attention)
- Interior Design (Renovate Myself)
- Time (Cram My Day with What I Love)
- Body (Experience the Experience)
- Family (Hold More Tightly)
- Neighborhood (Embrace Here)
- Now (Remember Now)
You can also earn a second entry by subscribing to the blog and leaving me a comment saying you did.
Subscribing to The Family CEO in 2013
Some of the things you can expect to find in your inbox or reader in January are:
- Kitchen remodel talk and photos
- More information on Found Money
- And a Happier at Home post
I’d love to have you along for the ride.
As always, thanks for being a reader and Happy New Year!
Note: This post contains my referral links. Please see my disclosure policy for more details.