Book review: Happiness is an Inside Job: Practicing for a Joyful Life (Sylvia Boorstein, Ph.D.)

Via on Jun 29, 2009

boorstein book

Happiness is an Inside Job

by Sylvia Boorstein

Review: Todd Mayville for

In this paperback reprint of Happiness is an Inside Job, Sylvia Boorstein uses the meditative parts of Buddhism’s Noble Eightfold Path (Right, or Wise Effort, Mindfulness, and Concentration) to remind the reader that how much happiness each of us chooses to have (or not have) is up to each of us.

Through the use of anecdotes—some humorous, some more serious—she illustrates how she and others use their awareness in various situations to decide how they will deal with that particular situation. One of the strengths of this book is that Boorstein never portrays herself as a master of equanimity, admitting that there are times when she, too, gets upset or sees things from a more personal standpoint that the situation calls for. However, she then goes on to demonstrate how returning to a use of Right Effort, Mindfulness, and/or Concentration helped to return her to a more balanced and happy state of mind.

The text lacks a lot of Buddhist terminology, which in the case of this book is a strength; rather than specific “Buddhist teaching,” Happiness is an Inside Job is meant for an audience beyond the Buddhist population.

From Ballantine Books and available at your local, independent bookstore.


About Alex Myles

Alex Myles is qualified as a Yoga teacher, Reiki Master, Teacher of Tibetan Meditation, Dragon Magic and a Spiritual coach to name just a few. Alex has no intention to teach others on a formal basis for many years to come, instead, she is collecting qualifications along with life’s lessons. One day, when the time is right, Alex will set up a quaint studio, in a quirky crooked building where she will breathe and appreciate the slowness of those days as life is just way too busy right now! Reading and writing has always been one of Alex’s passions. Alex likes to consider herself as a free spirit rather than a commitment-phobe. Trying to live as aligned to a Buddhist lifestyle as is possible in this day and age, she just does not believe in "owning" anything or anyone. Based on the theory that we ‘cannot lose someone that was not ours to lose’ she flails through life finding joy and magic in the most unexpected places. Mother to a 21 year old daughter and three adorable pups, she appreciates that some of the best moments in life are the 6am forest walks watching the dogs run, play and interact with one another and with nature. Connect with her on Facebook and check out her blog, Love and Madness. 


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