How To Be Happy: Book Recommendations That Can Help
By: Stephanie Kirby
Updated August 28, 2020
It seems like happiness is something that we should all know how to find. It doesn't seem like it should be something that we have to work at, think about, or try to do. Knowing how to be happy should just be something that is part of being human. But, it doesn't work like that.
Happiness is a choice and not just something that happens or doesn't happen. While many people think that their circumstances and their situation in life impact their level of happiness, it's completely possible to be happy regardless of your circumstances. You can choose your response to situations and learn how to control yourself and how happy you are.
One of the keys to learning how to be happy is continuing to learn throughout life. It's important to educate yourself on the topic if you're interested in learning how to be happy. The following books are written on the topic of happiness or topics that would relate to the level of happiness that you feel on a regular basis.
Reading through these books can help you improve how happy you are throughout your life.
You Learn by Living by Eleanor Roosevelt
This book is packed with wisdom that will help you live a better life. In one part of the book, she describes that happiness is inward and not outward along with ways to change your mind set in order to be happier. Some of the other things that she discusses in the book include:
- Learning to learn
- Fear - the Great enemy
- The uses of time
- The difficult art of maturity
- Readjustment is endless
- Learning to be useful
- The right to be an individual
- How to get the best out of people
The Battlefield of the Mind by Joyce Meyer
Since happiness is something that is not from our circumstances or situations, we have to learn how to control our thoughts and find happiness. While the topic of being happy isn't the main focus of this book, the principles taught within it are important for gaining control of your thoughts in order to find happiness.
Authentic Happiness by Martin Seligman
This book is a national bestseller and sparked the revolution of the positive psychology movement. It goes into detail about the difference between happiness and pleasure and defines each of them. It also works to explain how happiness is based on things in your control such as focusing on your strengths instead of your weaknesses. When reading the book, you will learn how to find your most important virtues and then base your life on them on your way to finding true happiness.
How to Forgive When You Don't Feel Like It by June Hunt
While this book is not about happiness, it does address an important concept that you will need in your life in order to be truly happy. Forgiveness can be a very difficult thing in life, and it can also rob you of being happy. When we wait until we feel like forgiving in order to forgive, we can wind up becoming more and more bitter and unhappy. Learning how to forgive is one of the keys to learning how to be truly happy in life and relationships.
Getting Back to Happy by Marc and Angel Chernoff
The subtitle of this book is: "change your thoughts, change your reality, and turn your trials into triumph". The authors of this book are big names in the personal development industry. In this book, they share both personal stories and advice on how to find true happiness and come back after tough times. It includes discussions on things like daily rituals, self control, and mindfulness in order to learn how to control your levels of happiness.
How Happiness Happens by Max Lucado
In the book How Happiness Happens: Finding Lasting Joy in a World of Comparison, Disappointment, and Unmet Expectations, Max Lucado addresses where we can find true joy and happiness.
This is a Christian book that focuses on finding true joy and contentment in life without allowing your circumstances such as your finances, your job, or your relationships to decide your happiness. He gives tips on how to live practically in a way to experience being happy on a regular basis.
The Happiness Trap by Russ Harris
The book, The Happiness Trap by Russ Harris is designed to help you stop struggling and start living. It's a mindfulness-based program to help you reduce stress, overcome fear, and create the meaningful life that you desire. In this book, it is discussed that the ways most people try to find happiness ends up leading us to be more unhappy. It then teaches how clarifying values and using mindfulness techniques can help us find the happy life that we desire.
Activating Happiness by Rachel Hershenberg, PhD
This book is a jump start guide to helping you overcome low motivation, depression, and feeling stuck. This walks you through the change that you can make on a daily basis to overcome the low motivation and fatigue that you experience with depression. It teaches solid strategies that are based on your behavior and different forms of therapy to help you overcome the cycle that you are in order to find happiness.
Uncovering Happiness: Overcoming Depression with Mindfulness and Self-Compassion by Elisha Goldstein, Ph.D.
If you're struggling with depression, it's very easy to feel like your happiness and your mood is out of your control. In this book, the author teaches seven steps that allow you to use self-compassion and mindfulness in order to take back control of your life. The book also seeks to provide you with the hope that you need in order to make the changes that you will benefit from in your life. It helps you take the necessary steps in order to move past depression into a life that you will find worth living.
Postpartum Happiness by Marissa Zwetow, LMFT
The subtitle of this book is: What to do when you love the kids but hate the job. There are many women who struggle with making the transition into motherhood. The baby blues can turn into postpartum depression, and the isolation that they experience in this new role of their life can be a very hard one to adjust to. Then the fact that they're not experiencing the levels of happiness that they think they should be experiencing at this time in their life cause them to feel guilty and ashamed. This book lets you know that it is perfectly okay to struggle during this time and transition in your life. It provides you with hope and encouragement that you need after having a baby.
Happy: Why More or Less Everything is Fine by Derren Brown
This book goes against the common trends of many happiness books on the market. The author explores the changing meaning of the word happiness throughout the years. Then, he explains how he believes the self-help theories and pushing the ideas of positive thinking and mindfulness in order to find happiness is actually harmful to people and can cause more anxiety. If you're looking for a new twist on a happiness book, this may be the one for you.
1000+ Little Things Happy Successful People Do Differently by Marc and Angel Chernoff
This is another book by Marc and Angel Chernoff, but it's packed with great information on how to be happier in your life. They incorporate the best information that they have learned throughout their years of study. Some of the information included in this book include 10 mistakes that happy people make, 12 amazingly achievable things to do today, and 12 tough truths that help you grow. The book is loaded with great information to help you learn the keys to be happy and successful in life.
Seek Help if You are Struggling
There are plenty of books that we can read to help us become happier as individuals. However, sometimes just reading books isn't going to be enough to get us the real help that we need in life.
If you want to know how to be happy because you are struggling with depression, anxiety, and other mental health conditions, it's helpful to seek treatment from a professional.
While these books may have helpful strategies and tips that you can use to improve your situation along the way, sometimes it just isn't enough. Talking with the therapist can help you to learn where your struggle is coming from and what you can do to overcome it. There are therapy options both in person and online, so make sure to reach out and seek help if you're truly struggling with your level of happiness.
But remember, even as you seek help from a professional for any challenges that you're experiencing, it is still important for you to take steps on your own, such as reading books to help you in your endeavors. You can also discuss the things that you're discovering in your book with your therapist to see what the best strategies are for you to use.