Marci Shimoff is no beginner to the world of writing, indeed her work with the hugely successful ‘Chicken Soup’ series is testament to that. In total she has six titles to her credit, and worldwide sales of over 13 million copies! Now that is not a shabby item to have on ones resume. This background alone should make Marci an expert on the subject of happiness. The Chicken Soup series are outstanding in their celebration of the human spirit.

Happy For No Reason explores a part of our psyche.  I and Marci Shimoff like to call it the happiness gene. If you take a step back, and think about all the people you interact with, and think about them. Some are eternally happy, and some are grumpy. Studies have shown that most of us (myself excluded) reside in the grumpy part of the universe. Just think about all the people you know. How many are happy?

Marci Shimoff explores the many faceted of happiness. Being rich may not buy happiness, buy maybe, happiness can make you rich? As the cartoon on page 32 explains, two guys around the Water Cooler and the caption reads “’All I want is a chance  to prove money  can’t make me happy”.

Happiness and money are an interesting combination, and a friendship that often fails.

Marci takes a new approach, be happy first, and let the money arrive later.

In Happy For No Reason we get to meet members of what Marci Schimoff refers to as her Happy 100. The book is based on the thoughts and actions of 100 naturally happy people. This eclectic group covers the gamut from rich to poor, and each one has their own unique approach to happiness. This at first makes for a confusing read, there are what seem to be conflicting messages. However if you put it all into the idea-processor (brain), and mull it over for a while, the fog clears. There are some aspects that many of the Happy 100 have in common, and it is only the semantics that change.

Many have faced great adversity in their lives, but adversity is not the key. Adversity is merely the vehicle that created the environment for happiness. The real key is being positive. Having a positive attitude even under the most trying of circumstances is what all of these fine people have in common. Some do it through prayer, being thankfull for what they do have, some do it through meditation, some merely revel in the world around them.

Marci Shimoff claims that happiness is 50% genetic and 50% learned. When I first read this I was somewhat skeptical, where did she get these numbers from? Well it turns out that her theory is backed up by research, in fact she beat the PhD’s at their own game, she had the notion before they conducted the study!

Happy For No Reason is available from Amazon

Simon Barrett

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