Friday, March 14, 2014

Weekly Quotes 2014 #10

The Happiness Project

The days are long, but the years are short.  (97)

[S]trategies I could use to help show my children that I was acknowledging their feelings:
* Write it down.
* Don’t feel as if I have to say anything.
* Don’t say “no” or “stop.”
* Wave my magic wand.
* Admit that a task is difficult.  (98-99)

Within the United States, according to a 2006 Pew Research Center study, 49 percent of people with an annual family income of more than $100,000 said they were “very happy,” in contrast to 24 percent of those with an annual income of less than $30,000.  And the percentages of reported happiness increased as income rose:  24 percent for those earning $30,000; 33 percent for $30,000 to under $75,000; 38 percent for $75,000 to under $100,000; and 49 percent for more than $100,000.  (166)

When money or health is a problem, you think of little else; when it’s not a problem, you don’t think much about it.  Both money and health contribute to happiness mostly in the negative; the lack of them brings much more unhappiness than possessing them bring happiness.  (169)

I wanted to spend money to stay in closer contact with my family and friends; to promote my energy and health; to create a more serene environment in my apartment; to work more efficiently; to eliminate sources of boredom, irritation, and marital conflict; to support causes that I thought important; and to have experiences that would enlarge me.   (171)

When any of us try a new activity—even when using skills from past successes—we’re still taking a risk. Will it always turn out exactly as we want it to? No. Will it be uncomfortable? Maybe. Will we make mistakes as we learn? Yes, and we may even fail miserably.

For children to become autonomous—which every child must do to grow into a competent adult—they have to develop and express to the world their own unique opinion. Occasionally that opinion will be different from yours. In other words, one sign of good parenting is that your child openly argues logically with you. And—sometimes—she has to win those arguments. (Interpretation: That means sometimes you have to be a good sport about losing arguments.)  

Finesse can work where coercion fails. 

The only thing that keeps us from moving forward in our lives is fear.  (145)

It’s perfectly natural to create a healing relationship with your body.  (151)

Research shows that solitude fosters peace of mind, a relaxed body, increased energy, heightened awareness, self-confidence, and increased enthusiasm and creativity.  (152)

Quoting Robin Morgan:  I do care what people think, but I care more what I think!  (56)

Doing unto yourself is not “about me”; it is about taking practical and emotional responsibility for the rest of your life.  (123)

Discerning the difference between age-related inevitabilities and conditions that need attention is a skill we need to polish assiduously and continually.  (129)

Quoting “Maryl”:  Instead of assessing everything, and saying what we would like to have changed, it was really what would we like the next five years to be.  It was very positive, very wonderful, and very satisfying for both of us.  (154)

Psychologist James Hillman talks about liberating character—what you do when you are alone—from personality—the traits you have developed to navigate society, which is why it may take awhile [sic] to be truly alone with your authentic self; there are a host of masked interlopers in the way.  (164)

Dreams must be guarded like children.  Like children, they must be nurtured and soothed.  (148)


  1. I really like the "doing unto yourself" quote.

    1. OE, That is a theme that also came up in The Mindfulness Path to Self-Esteem--the importance of self-care and how women, in particular, tend to put others first at the expense of their own well-being.

  2. I just finished "50 Is the New Fifty". I enjoyed it. I am thinking about reading "The Happiness Project" soon.

    1. I think you'll really like The Happiness Project. I read it because I though my daughter might enjoy it but almost as soon as I started it I realized she would hate it. My daughter-in-law, however, would probably love it. I'm going to see if the secondhand bookstore has a copy.

      In many ways, though, you're already on a happiness project with your doing one new thing every day. But maybe Rubin's book will give you ideas of how you might continue exploring some of the things you tried. I definitely liked how she focused on one thing a month and really allowed herself to embrace one change before adding another thing to her life. That made a lot of sense to me and I would imagine the book's success has a lot to do with that.