ARC, Books

Book 345: How to Be Happy (Or at Least Less Sad) – Lee Crutchley

Crutchley, Lee - How to be Happy (Or at Least Less Sad)When I received this book I had no idea what it was. I hadn’t ordered any books recently and it appeared in my mail and am I glad it did! I spent some time thinking about this wonderful new magic of books randomly appearing on my doorstep, thanks Perigee, I then flipped through the book and knew this would be great. Perigee sent this to me in return for my honest opinion and I received no compensation for it.

After figuring out where it came from, I spent a few more minutes having an internal crisis over whether I should blog about it. I mean is it a book? Is it a workbook? (It’s both.) Then, I remembered I’ve written about much shorter works, and loose collections of words I wouldn’t even deign to call a book so why shouldn’t I post about it? Add in that May is Mental Health month and Self-Discovery month (who knew?!) and May 4-10 is National Anxiety and Depression Awareness Week and this is the perfect time to have read it and to blog about it. But the best news for YOU, dear reader, is that the book comes out tomorrow, May 5th, so you should most definitely go out and get a copy (Amazon Affiliate Link)!

It’s difficult to say what I liked most about this book. I definitely loved that it’s not really a self-help book in the traditional sense. This is a help you help yourself book without a lot of hoity-toity language or ideas. It doesn’t pretend to give a lot of advice and collectively has probably less than 1,000 words (might be an exaggeration), but I can definitely see it helping out a lot of people. So what’s in it if there isn’t a lot of text?

Overwhelming the workbook is full of charming illustrations to remind you how to do the simplest of things, like this:

2015 04-29 Gentle Reminders

Or awesome activities, perfectly described by Oliver Burkman in the forward,

“The best part, though, is that this isn’t really a book of happiness advice at all. Instead, it’s a tool for plumbing the depths of your own mind and dredging up your own wisdom…” (Forward)

Seriously, there are so many wonderful activities for you to do whenever you’re feeling down. Below is one example of an exercise:

(Thanks again Perigee!)

I wish I could tell you which was my favorite, but there were so many. The one that stands out most was where you write everything bad in one box and everything good in another box, but the trick is the “bad” box is about a fifth the side of the “good” box. And it’s this type of perspective that you need when you are having a rough time to remind you there is good in you and in the world.

Thankfully, when I read through this, I was in a great space, but I can see where it will come in handy in the future! And as an added bonus check out Lee Crutchley’s website and Instagram as they’re both brilliant and full of his illustrations and other activities from the book!

Recommendation: Definitely get a copy if you think you’ll need a pick-me-up or a reminder of how happy you actually can be. From the inspirational quotes to the simple, yet poignant illustrations there’s only things to love about the book. And to be honest Perigee is two-for-two with How to Be Happy (Or at Least Less Sad) and The Anxiety Toolkit, I’m ready to tackle the world.

Opening Line: “The problem with a lot of advice about how to be happy is that it’s rubbish: unadultered, weapons-grade nonsense.” (From the foreword by Oliver Burkeman”

Closing Line: “It may not be that easy to BE HAPPY, but you know that it’s possible to feel a bit less sad.” (Not whited out as this is nonfiction and/or a workbook.)


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