Tuesday 19 July 2011

Review: Reclaiming Happiness

If I'd been looking for a good book to read after The High-Heeled Guide to Spiritual Living - or if I'd been feeling depressed and wanted some guidance on how to cheer up - I couldn't have picked a better one than Reclaiming Happiness: 8 Strategies for an Authentic Life and Greater Peace,by psychologist Nicola Phoenix.

In fact, I read the book with something of an open mind after being sent a press release about it, because I thought it looked suitable to review on my blog. But once I'd started it, I realised it had arrived in my life at the right time.

Generally speaking, I consider myself reasonably content with life, but I still get my off days - when nothing seems to go right, I get stressed and then either lose my temper or dissolve into floods of tears. Reclaiming Happinessnot only offers practical advice on how to remain calm in trying situations like that, but also how to develop a new way of looking at life and at ourselves to be truly happier.

The press release about the book, which I was sent by publisher Findhorn Press, asks: "Stop for a minute. How many people around you are really happy? Are you really happy? Observe the lengths people will go to to distract themselves from a natural state of happiness. What do you think you’d need to do, own or succeed at in order to experience real happiness? What do you think you would need to change about your life? The Spiritual Psychologist, Nicola Phoenix, says in reality, it’s ourselves that are the most important thing and if we choose to, we can all be happy."

In the book, Nicola examines misunderstandings we often have about happiness.

Many of us think that those with more money, bigger homes or better jobs are somehow happier than we are, which isn't necessarily the case.
Nicola says that the moments when we feel lost, in pain, alone, or that life is dealing us blow after blow are actually the best times to start reclaiming happiness. The first step is to realise that we are OK as we are. “We are all right now and in every way complete,” she says.

Reclaiming Happiness offers practical exercises and techniques to deal with specific problems the moment you find yourself facing them, and also to generally realign one's outlook on life to learn to be happy.

I'm certainly going to be trying out some of those techniques next time I find myself wound up or down in the dumps, as well as taking on board some of the pointers to a generally happier life.


Unknown said...

The best things in life are free....

Badwitch said...

I do like free things :)