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10 Percent Happier

Who doesn’t want to be happier? 10 percent happier, even…..

Here’s a book written by Dan Harris  is the co-anchor of Nightline and the weekend editions of Good Morning America. He regularly reports for 20/20, World News with Diane Sawyer, and the weekday editions of Good Morning America. Before joining ABC News fourteen years ago, he worked for local news outlets in Boston and Maine. He lives with his wife, Bianca, in New York City. This is his first book.

 

10% Happier: How I Tamed the Voice in My Head, Reduced Stress Without Losing My Edge, and Found Self-Help That Actually Works–A True Story

 
About the book:
After having a nationally televised panic attack on Good Morning America, Dan Harris knew he had to make some changes. A lifelong nonbeliever, he found himself on a bizarre adventure, involving a disgraced pastor, a mysterious self-help guru, and a gaggle of brain scientists. Eventually, Harris realized that the source of his problems was the very thing he always thought was his greatest asset: the incessant, insatiable voice in his head, which had both propelled him through the ranks of a hyper-competitive business and also led him to make the profoundly stupid decisions that provoked his on-air freak-out.

We all have a voice in our head. It’s what has us losing our temper unnecessarily, checking our email compulsively, eating when we’re not hungry, and fixating on the past and the future at the expense of the present. Most of us would assume we’re stuck with this voice – that there’s nothing we can do to rein it in – but Harris stumbled upon an effective way to do just that.

It’s a far cry from the miracle cures peddled by the self-help swamis he met; instead, it’s something he always assumed to be either impossible or useless: meditation. After learning about research that suggests meditation can do everything from lower your blood pressure to essentially rewire your brain, Harris took a deep dive into the under-reported world of CEOs, scientists, and even marines who are now using it for increased calm, focus, and happiness.

10% Happier takes readers on a ride from the outer reaches of neuroscience to the inner sanctum of network news to the bizarre fringes of America’s spiritual scene, and leaves them with a takeaway that could actually change their lives.
 

My views:

Dan Harris had my attention right from the start with his humorous style while talking about real events, his feelings and his fears. I could identify completely with the ‘voice in his head’ – the internal dialouge.  Despite his success, the voice in Dan Harris kept him insecure – worried about not looking good enough for television, not getting the best breaks as far as shows were concerned.

“But it was in this moment, lying in bed late at night, that I first realized that the voice in my head—the running commentary that had dominated my field of consciousness since I could remember—was kind of an *hole.”  Yes, be warned that the book comes across as being quite real, bad language and all.

Dan kept living on the edge – by choosing jobs in dangerous war zones and taking drugs – all in an effort to keep a high and feel he was in the thick of things.

How he found meditation or rather how meditation found him, makes a fascinating tale.  He goes on to share with us how meditation is for everyone and the variety of people who are using it to increase their happiness level.

He advocates meditation :“Many of us labor under the delusion that we’re permanently stuck with all of the difficult parts of our personalities – that we are hot-tempered, or shy, or sad – and that these are fixed, immutable traits. We now know that many of the attributes we value most are, in fact, skills which can be trained the same way you build your body in the gym.” 


He shares how meditation changed his life and “If it weren’t for meditation I would be able to do everything now just crankier and more stressed. Meditation made me better able to focus in a more effective way.”

I found the book honest and intriguing.

[rating=4]

Go here for an excerpt: Book Excerpt: ABC’s Dan Harris’ ‘10% Happier’

This post is written for the letter ‘T’ for the Blogging From A to Z April Challenge 2014.

I received this book from LitFuse Publicity in exchange for an honest review.

18 Comments

  1. Pixie Pixie April 28, 2014

    I completely agree about meditation. It helps centers you and helps channelize your energy.
    Let me see if the library has this book! 🙂

  2. Richa Singh Richa Singh April 26, 2014

    Meditation works always. For happiness and peace..

  3. Beloo Mehra Beloo Mehra April 25, 2014

    Walking in my little garden in early morning, seeing the plants closely as if checking up on each of them to see how they are doing, gathering flowers, picking up some dead leaves here and there, arranging flowers in simple ways throughout the home, and just taking it all in – this is my morning meditation most days. Or it could be simply listening to some music in silence…whatever brings some calm and peace within, whatever takes me inside.

    • Corinne Rodrigues Corinne Rodrigues Post author | April 25, 2014

      Yes, Beloo. There are so many forms of meditation – thank you for sharing yours! ♥

  4. nabanita nabanita April 25, 2014

    Sounds like an interesting book…I find it so hard to meditate…so hard to concentrate

  5. Proactive Indian Proactive Indian April 25, 2014

    Sounds like an interesting book, but I’ll give it a miss as I’m not the ‘meditating type’. I normally have my quiet, introspective moments during my early morning walk and at random times during the day.

    • Corinne Rodrigues Corinne Rodrigues Post author | April 25, 2014

      I understand, Pro. Different strokes for different folks and all that. 🙂

  6. Betsy/Zen Mama Betsy/Zen Mama April 25, 2014

    Corrine,
    Sounds like a great book. I’m very interested in doing a lot more meditation.
    Thanks for the suggestion!

  7. Mary Stephenson Mary Stephenson April 25, 2014

    I was reading that there are many ways to meditate and once you practice it, there will be much more peace in your life. I keep forgetting to try this more often. I still struggle with how to do it and I suppose it is however you can find calmness.

    Thanks for the share.

    Mary

    • Corinne Rodrigues Corinne Rodrigues Post author | April 25, 2014

      I need to try out different methods too, Mary. Thank you for stopping by.

  8. Shilpa Garg Shilpa Garg April 24, 2014

    A friend swears by meditation too. It has helped her immensely!! But they say, it takes a long while to completely free your mind. The books sounds interesting!

    • Corinne Rodrigues Corinne Rodrigues Post author | April 25, 2014

      A lot of people do, Shilpa. But I think freeing your mind is not possible – the idea is to just sit to do it and not try to hard, I’m guessing. 🙂

  9. Meena Menon Meena Menon April 24, 2014

    Mmmm i find it so difficult to meditate.. it’s as if my mind has a mind of its own Cory :-/

    • Corinne Rodrigues Corinne Rodrigues Post author | April 24, 2014

      I have the same problem, Meena. I’ve found that free writing in a diary works as meditation for me.

  10. Suzy Suzy April 24, 2014

    Meditation was one of the best things I ever learned to do. Will check out this book. Thanks for sharing.

    • Corinne Rodrigues Corinne Rodrigues Post author | April 24, 2014

      That’s wonderful, Suzy! I’m more the writing meditation type.

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