Yesterday morning I went where I do not often go. Yonge & Bloor. Even rarer? It was 7:45 am. I migrated north at this ungodly hour to the offices of HarperCollins because I was one of the lucky bloggers and bookish folk invited to have breakfast with Gretchen Rubin, author of ‘The Happiness Project : Or, Why I Spent a Year Trying to Sing in the Morning, Clean My Closets, Fight Right, Read Aristotle, and Generally Have More Fun.’
I had eyed the bright blue cover when it came out in hardback last year, but my cynical nature and stubborn unwillingness to change my habits made me reluctant to engage with Gretchen’s advice. Now it’s January. And of my own accord, I’ve decided I’m ready to start tweaking my lifestyle in small measures (resolutions are just made to be broken), to see if the differences lead to a more balanced and happier me. I’ve joined a book club. I arrange to have dinner with my parents before they ask me and it feels like an obligation. Overspending over Christmas has lead me to pledge to buy nothing new for 30 days. So I found myself now ready to engage with my own Happiness project, just when the invite arrived to join Gretchen for breakfast to celebrate her paperback release.
Between bagel mouthfuls, Gretchen spilled the scoop on the book’s upcoming TV adaption. Kristin Davis is set to star and a pilot is on the way. If everything goes well, it might be hitting screens next year! She also let us know that you can find great guides for book groups on her website as well as starter kits for anyone interested in starting their own Happiness Project that she’ll send to you. Gretchen also mentioned she’d be delighted to send anyone a book plate for their copy of her book, just email her and ask! Meeting such an accessible and interested author was a pleasure.
‘The Happiness Project’ actually makes it easy for the uncommitted, like myself, to slowly create a difference in your day to day outlook. It’s a book you can dip in and out of; the chapters are arranged by months. If for example, Gretchen’s January suggestions for Boosting Energy appeal but February’s love centric advice sends you running for the hills, then put it down and revisit the book in May to reconsider how you can do more with your leisure time; have fun playing!
I plan on reading ‘The Happiness Project’ with sincerity and resolve. And if moi, sarcasm personified, can pull off sincerity and resolve, anyone can.
By Zoe Shapiro