Friday, May 21, 2010

The Happiness Project and it's success

This week's "Love Website" is The Happiness Project website by Gretchen Rubin. I discovered Gretchen and her website last summer as I was exploring happiness in the midst of my unemployment days. I'm rather proud that I blogged about her, "Facebook friended" her, and even had an email exchange way back before her book was published and now it's a number one best seller!

This morning as I was perusing the results of my Google Alerts search for "happiness" I came across this article that says that Crown will be paying $1M for her next book, Happier at Home. Wow! I know money isn't happiness, but I bet there's some celebrating going on in her household right now.

The article notes that, Gretchen Rubin got started on her happiness project "by writing a blog with the intention of spending a year test-driving studies and theories about how to be happier."

I bought the book and it's a good self-help type of book exploring different areas of happiness. Gretchen took a theme each month and focused on that theme. For example, in January, her theme was "boost energy" and she focused and wrote about getting more sleep. Her February theme is "Remembering Love" and explores ways in which she focused on being a better wife. The months continue with her thoughts on happiness in many areas: work, parenthood, leisure, friendship, money, eternity, books, mindfulness, and attitude. Gretchen notes that we each have our own things that bring us happiness and encourages everyone to create their own customized happiness project.

As I noted once before, I'd rather have love than happiness, but certainly happiness seems to be a component of love, so my thinking is love is happiness, mixed in with a bunch of other rather complicated emotions. I'd call it Happiness+.

The article also says, "Ms. Rubin continues writing the blog, which has become its own phenomenon, and is widely considered a textbook example of how to build an audience for a book in the digital age."

Ah ha! I'm totally going to copy Gretchen Rubin's idea except my blog/book/project will be The LOVE Project. I already documented my year of learning about love in The Laptop Dancer Diaries, which also just happens to be split into month-by-month "lessons of love" (yeah... I'll call them that.) Now I just have to get in touch with Crown and get my million dollars!


Karen said...

I started reading the Happiness Project but got weighed down by all the researchy bits. And I was amazed at how much work was involved to be happy, at least according to the book. I think my definition of happy must be different from hers. Happiness shouldn't have to be so hard!

Yvette said...

Hi Karen!
I tried to follow your link to a blog, but it looks blank. Do you have a blog?

Yes, I did think the book was more academic than I'd anticipated. It has some good insights on happiness, though. I'm really interested in our emotions and how so much can be controlled by our minds and attitudes.

Come find me on Facebook! I'd love to know more about you. It's always fun to get a comment on my blog from someone I don't know and then become a virtual friend!

Rebecca S. Mullen said...

I loved the Happiness Project and I agree that your book has some similar layout/format themes, Yvette. I thought that as I read.