12 Best Books On Happiness: Give yourself the gift of happiness

We are all in the pursuit of happiness whether we know it or not.

Happiness can be found in simplest things like looking at a rainbow, the warm feeling of being loved or making a snowman with our family or just sipping a warm coffee leisurely with no agenda for the whole day in mind …


Once in a while we should take some time to unwind- get wet in that light rain on a sunny day and try to look for that beautiful rainbow which we could have missed while running to look for an umbrella.


We should take a “happy ” chance– run barefoot in the grass trying to listen to the melodious chirping of the birds in our backyard or help someone totally unknown who genuinely needs help. We should come out of our closed dark rooms and open the windows and let the warm sunshine touch us with its radiant positive energy.


There are many books out there that can help us on our quest for happiness.


I am listing few books I enjoyed reading and my short reviews of these books.


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This book is one of my personal favorites as it is simple to read and has profound meaning to it. It makes us understand that joy is much bigger than happiness. The Dalai Lama and Archbishop Tutus reflect on their lives and teach us how to find joy and happiness in our lives despite of challenging situations in life. They say that “Pain is inevitable; suffering is optional.” 

They outline that by following the eight pillars of joy we can change “threat stress” to “challenge stress” and grow.This book is easy to read due to humor of both of these authors. 

This book is a combination of author’s research on happiness and her personal life experiences. She mentions simple principles  -“Change your life without changing your life”, “What you do every day matters more than what you do once in a while”, “you don’t need to be good at everything”.These are lot of situations we all face almost everyday. She further explains the positive impact of being active, having social support and being mindful. Overall the book does sound similar to others but the author does make some good points.
The Art Of Happiness, a book based on psychiatrist Howard C. Cutler interviewing the 14th Dalai Lama about happiness. The author mentions ways to train our mind/ consciousness for happiness. Key is learning how to change negative emotions to positive ones with self-discipline, meditation ,compassion, acceptance of change and control of negative emotions. It is a great book to read for someone who is interested in mindfulness and wants to be truly happy.

It is a comprehensive guide regarding how happiness can be achieved through meditation.The author starts by explaining what meditation is and what it isn’t. She explains the science of meditation and the benefits of it.She believes that “the essence of meditative process is changing the way we relate to everything. Its the quality of relationship,that’s where the transformation takes place.”

The author talks about the realities and practicalities of life today. He gives the correlation of happiness with various factors in life such as is your job, credentials, status, money, your spouse.He talks about trying to figure out the formula of life well lived, keeping balance of work-life balance and meaningful career. 
Author explains how are brain has a built in negativity bias and is wired to go negative to help us survive and the snowball effect of negativity leading to more negativity. “Paper tiger paranoia”, our anxiety, our daily mad rush does not let our brain remember the good experiences (“teflon effect” ) but does not forget the negative experiences (“velcro effect”). The author explains how appreciating the good in life can help change the negative mindset to a positive one. So this book may be helpful for people who are less optimistic in day to day life.

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The author mentions the hurdles to being happy and explains that happiness is related to purpose and identity rather than achievement and accomplishments in life.



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The author talks about breaking the mental barriers and decreasing decision fatigue to achieve mental peace and happiness. He talks about doing things in life not because we “have to” but because “we want to” and because doing them makes us happy. The book outlines many practical and useful ways to build happiness and decreasing stress.



9) The How of Happiness: A New Approach to Getting the Life You Want Paperback – December 30, 2008 by Sonja Lyubomirsky(Author)



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The author describes various strategies to find happiness in various scenarios including stress and hardships. She helps find happiness activities that fit our interests and needs so that we are more likely to pursue them. She outlines how living in the moment and enjoying life’s joys is important. She gives techniques of taking care of body and our mind (meditation).The author also outlines the importance of social support, habits, positive emotions, effort and commitment to achieving these. Great book to read.



10) Before Happiness: The 5 Hidden Keys to Achieving Success, Spreading Happiness, and Sustaining Positive Change Hardcover – September 10, 2013 by Shawn Achor (Author)


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The author mentions that happiness is related to our mindset and our perception of life. He provides lots of practical and applicable advice to follow five skills that he mentions in his book to achieve success.



11) Authentic Happiness: Using the New Positive Psychology to Realize Your Potential for Lasting Fulfillment by Martin E. P. Seligman 


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In this book the author reinforces that there are no shortcuts to happiness.He says that the happiness from doing good to others and from kindness and mindful acts gives longer lasting true happiness.
The author has developed what he calls the “happiness formula”.He also talks about steps to forgiveness to achieve contentment and gratitude. It is a very practical book using exercises and a website program to help the readers achieve their goal of true happiness. Good one to read.
The pages provide space to make daily happy notes.

Hope you find a book you enjoy..Happy reading!


Please leave a comment to say which book you enjoyed the most.


 and my


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