When stuck on an unusually long layover in an airport when the battery on your ebook reader is draining unusually fast, a paperback copy of The Happiness Project seems like a good thing to buy. Maybe it’s the thought that you may never find happiness again (the illusion that you might have to live the rest of your life in a terminal of the Philadelphia airport) or the idea that there are concrete steps you can take to make yourself happier.
I can’t say I loved this book. I’m sure it was very theraputic to write it and I’m sure it inspired many people to take up their own happiness project, but as a book to read, it’s not particularly good. I’m happy for Gretchen that she was able to improve her life. I’m sure if she was a friend of mine, I would have enjoyed the book much more. I likely would have put it down, but as each month has its own theme, even the most dull themes were soon over.
Do I think that happiness can be a project? Probably not. However, I do think that it’s a choice and that there are some people (like me) who need goals to keep up the illusion of progress towards such things as happiness.
Will I do my own happiness project? Probably not, but I can appreciate the concept of consciously taking control of your life and choosing to live about the tyranny of everyday chaos.