5 Mini-Lessons on Happiness From 5 Books That Changed My Life

Some thought-provoking books to broaden your mind.

5 Mini-Lessons on Happiness From 5 Books That Changed My Life
Photo by Josh Felise on Unsplash

Are you happy?

What would be your answer if someone suddenly asks this question?

The world happiness index, released on March 20, the international day of happiness, is falling gradually.

The truth is most of us chase happiness without knowing what it is.

The meaning of happiness can be different for different people. You need to find what truly makes you happy and fulfilled, rather than following others’ footsteps. Here are five lessons on happiness from five books that influenced me to find my joy. You can find yours too. Let’s go.

(Note: The links mentioned in this article are affiliate links. If you choose to purchase these books through these links, it will help me earn a small amount of money — at no extra cost to you. Thanks!)

1. How To Stop Worrying And Start Living by Dale Carnegie

Image: Goodreads

Do you know that worrying a lot can lead to physical illness?

It can cause a nervous breakdown, high blood pressure, stomach issues, and even tooth decay.

But who likes worrying?

Sometimes our negative thoughts just don’t seem to stop.

How To Stop Worrying And Start Living teaches how to deal with the negative emotions that can kill happiness. It has simple strategies to manage stress, confusion, sadness, and criticism.

Lessons on happiness from this book

Take criticism as compliments.

You’ll learn to mold negativity in ways to keep your spirits high, no matter what the situation is.

My favorite quotes from How To Stop Worrying And Start Living by Dale Carnegie

“Our thoughts make us what we are.”
“No matter what happens, always be yourself.”
“Nothing can bring you peace but yourself.”

Get yourself a copy here.

2. The Power Of Positive Thinking by Norman Vincent Peale

Image: Goodreads

The biggest reason why people are unhappy is that they let their negative and self-sabotaging thoughts win.

The Power Of Positive Thinking will help you break this toxic cycle and teach you how to stop worrying.

Only positive thinking can help you believe in yourself, master your thoughts, and change your negative thoughts. Whenever negative thoughts take over you, imagine the worry-free life you want and work towards it. Teach yourself to be confident, even if you have to fake it, and you’ll see most of your problems disappear.

Lessons on happiness from this book

The path to happiness is simple. You just have to expect less, love more, free yourself from hate and worry, and be confident in yourself.

With the practical strategies mentioned in this book, you can become more hopeful and ambitious toward achieving your goals. Be kind to yourself and others, and release the things you can’t control. Your thoughts have the power to change your life, so keep them positive.

My favorite quotes from The Power Of Positive Thinking by Norman Vincent Peale

“The trouble with most of us is that we would rather be ruined by praise than saved by criticism”
“When you expect the best, you release a magnetic force in your mind which by a law of attraction tends to bring the best to you.”

Get yourself a copy here.

3. Don’t Sweat The Small Stuff by Richard Carlson

Image: Goodreads

Are you triggered by little things happening around you like traffic, rush in trains, and annoying people talking?

Sometimes little mishaps are enough to spoil our day. Don’t Sweat The Small Stuff is a wonderful book that will help you find peace in stressful surroundings. The book will change your mindset about happiness and teach you how to let go of the stuff that drives you insane.

This book has some mind-boggling concepts that can make your life easier. Give it a read, especially if you’re always living hyper-alert and don’t know when to relax.

Lessons on happiness from this book

Your life is not an emergency. It’s meant to be lived.

Learn to take breaks frequently, trust your intuition, lower your tolerance to stressful things, and live each day as if it’s your last. Stop worrying about your inbox for a second and focus on the things that make you happier.

My favorite quotes from Don’t Sweat The Small Stuff by Richard Carlson

“…when you let go of your expectations, when you accept life as it is, you’re free.To hold on is to be serious and uptight. To let go is to lighten up.”
“Even though we often mess up, most of us are doing the best that we know how with the circumstances that surround us.”
“Don’t sweat the small stuff…and it’s all small stuff.”

Get yourself a copy here.

4. The Happiness Equation by Neil Pasricha

Image: Goodreads

The Happiness Equation is a powerful book that will change your perspective about your time, career, relationship, and happiness.

The book illustrates the nine secrets of happiness and provides practical guidelines to apply those for a fulfilling life. You’ll understand happiness lies in wanting nothing. It may sound contradictory but The Happiness Equation explains it well.

This book is a must-read, especially for those who overthink everything and are always hard on themselves to achieve something. It teaches us how happiness can be found in the small things every day.

Lessons on happiness from this book

The Happiness Equation tells us the secret to a happy life lies in healthy relationships. The book has also discussed some counterintuitive concepts like

  • true wealth has nothing to do with money,
  • multitasking is a myth,
  • taking advice the right way, and
  • the theory of retirement.

You’ll learn that eliminating multiple options leads to better decision-making. The factors we think are vital in life are mostly unimportant.

My favorite quote from The Happiness Equation by Neil Pasricha

“Start doing something, you’ll continue.. why? Because motivation doesn’t cause action. Action causes motivation.”

Get yourself a copy here.

5. Ikigai by Hector Garcia & Francesc Miralles

Image: Goodreads

People are the happiest when they have a purpose in life and their eyes sparkle when they share their passion.

If you’re struggling with low motivation or feeling lost, Ikigai may show you the way to longevity and happiness.

The book is a compilation of research on long-lived Japanese people and their principles of a purposeful life. Ikigai is a Japanese word that means “life to be worthwhile”.

Ikigai shares inspiring case studies of the oldest people in Japan who never retired. They say the secrets behind their longevity and happiness are a purposeful career, good relationships, and building healthy habits. You can do the same as you apply these principles in your life by asking yourself a few simple questions.

Lessons on happiness from this book

This book was a game changer in my life as it helped me discover my Ikigai. I realized that in the end, nothing can make you happier than having a purpose and taking small steps toward it every day.

Reading this book, you’ll feel a surge of happiness and motivation to find what truly fulfills you.

My favorite quotes from Ikigai by Hector Garcia & Francesc Miralles

“Life is not a problem to be solved. Just remember to have something that keeps you busy doing what you love while being surrounded by the people who love you.”
“Everything can be taken from a man but one thing: the last of the human freedoms — to choose one’s attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one’s own way.”

Get yourself a copy here.

For more book reviews and recommendations, follow me on Goodreads.

Every week, I send out an uplifting, inspirational story. Join 2500+ readers on my email list to get exclusive access.

Building Better Habits: 5 Lessons From 5 Best Books on Habit Building
Improve your life with science-backed insights from experts.
5 Business Lessons From The 5 Best Books on Entrepreneurship
Learn business skills better than any course or coach can teach you.
5 Best Books on Buddhism for Beginners
Read to unlock your brain’s full potential.