Happiness Is an Inside Job: Practicing for a Joyful Life
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Happiness Is an Inside Job: Practicing for a Joyful Life

3.82 of 5 stars 3.82  ·  rating details  ·  310 ratings  ·  52 reviews

How can we stay engaged with life day after day? How can we continue to love–keep our minds in a happy mood–when life is complex and often challenging? These are questions that Sylvia Boorstein addresses in Happiness Is an Inside Job. In more than three decades of practice and teaching she has discovered that the secret to happiness lies in actively cultivating our connect

MP3 Book, 0 pages
Published December 4th 2007 by Blackstone Audio, Inc. (first published 2007)
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so far i like her even better then pema chodran! definitely a book i needed RIGHT NOW!

liked her so well, I've ordered one of her other books. this book seemed just the right amount of deep understanding, insightful teaching, in-the-trenches feel with enough fluff to make it readable and relatable. I got the feeling she is very much living in this world with us, just trying to get by. I'm speaking feeling and meditatively if not monitarily. other readers did not relate due to stories that reveal...more
I thoroughly enjoyed listening to this audiobook. There were a lot of good ideas that stopped me in my tracts, for instance the idea of us having "scripts" which we try to rewrite after a situation is over and nothing can be done to change how it happened, some people will still try and relive it over and over in their mind about what they could have said, why did that person say that, should haves, etc. I do that and it's a horrible waste of time. She also talked about the five hindrances which...more
Maughn Gregory
I was put off every now and then by Boorstein's life stories, which reveal her to lead a pretty pampered life - buying antique furniture in Paris, ski trips to the Pyrenees, teaching at retreats on Hawaiian islands, lap tops, hands-free car phones, etc. - and none of her insights into compassion seem to have taken her very far beyond that life, e.g., into a refugee camp or soup kitchen. But I learned some good lessons on Buddhist psychology from her clear analysis and good writing.
Sylvia Boorstein helps you understand the Buddhist paths of wise effort, wise mindfulness, and wise concentration using practical experiences and examples. This book keeps you focused on learning how to pay attention to difficulties that startle you and get you back into a balanced state. I am very interested in reading Dr. Boorstein other books!
Janet C.
I enjoyed this book. This is not a book you read once or without a pad of paper handy. This is not a fast read. This book explores Buddhism concepts for a contented mind. "Challenges in life are inevitable and that suffering, the mind is in contentious mode with its experience, is the instinctive response of the untrained mind. Equanimity, wisdom and kindness. Three topics are discussed...wise effort, wise mindfulness,wise concentration.

Remember you may not always be pleased with life but you ca...more
**Happiness seekers: apply within**
Buddhism for the rest of us. That’s how I’d describe this little gem. The author does an impressive job in presenting an overview of Buddhist principles, and then making salient some of the core nuggets. In particular, she conveys how the trio of effort, concentration, and mindfulness can be used to help us move from internal confusion and struggle to inner wisdom and happiness. With clear and concise explanations of otherwise hefty concepts—and personal experi...more
Dec 31, 2007 Amy rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: People with anxiety
Shelves: 2008, non-fiction
I am probably rating this so highly because this is the first time I have ever read a "self-help" book, however, I do think I picked a good one. I just liked the title, and was unsure what the book was about. I really enjoyed it and it has helped me tremendously. I like(d) to dwell on things a little too much, especially things I have no control over, sometimes constantly relieving the past, or imagining the future, anything but living in the present.Sylvia teaches you why and how to avoid this...more
Wendy Ellis
Without any better way to explain it, I must borrow from the quoted authors who praise this book:
"...value to anyone who seeks to live in this world with greater self-awareness, sensitivity, and kindness"
-S. Batchelor
"...demonstrates that all of us have the ability to become aware of our thought patterns, habits, and tendencies without being held hostage..." -S. Susanka

***"...should be required reading for all human beings." -S. Cope***

More that a self-help "How to be Happy" book...I truthfully...more
Barbara Rhine
Simply put, the author, a Jewish Buddhist practitioner, is intelligent, honest, warm and wise. This mature woman serves as a wonderful example of a fully-developed human being with much to say about bringing mindfulness into every moment.
Become unconfused and restore connection ~ the best way to live

Sadness is when the mind feels bereaved or bereft. It realizes the shape of the future has changed forever. All losses are sad. The end of an important relationship is a death. When people fall out of love with each other, or when what seemed like a solid friendship falls into ruin, the hope for a shared future -- a hope that provided a context and a purpose to life -- is gone. The survivors of a broken relationship find themselves i...more
Everyone should read this book. At least once.
A little gem of a book...focusing on the three middle paths - Wise Effort, Wise Mindfulness and Wise Concentration - of the Eightfold Paths of Buddhism, the book is littered with many of the author's personal stories and experiences of how to restore balance to the mind after disruptive events in life. Such hindrances are unavoidable due to the ever changing nature of life, however, by practicing Wise Effort, Wise Mindfulness and Wise Concentration we can through kindness and compassion achieve...more
Andrea Bussinger
funny, warm, and informative
Powerful insight into the simple pleasures of caring. Good quote "I love it that what my heart wants most is to console or appreciate or encourage. It feels better in relationship". Although many of us read books about happiness and maintaining, it's not often you find a book about someone who teaches that when the mind falls into the trap of self pity, ignorance, hate, and selfishness, it's fallen into a state of confusion and it forgets until you straighten. Relax, Breathe, and pay attention t...more
It didn't do me any harm to read this - but I'd hoped for something more after listening to interviews with Boorstein recently. She's a delightful, warm-hearted conversationalist - but this book was sort of repetitive and lack-luster. Though after reading it I suppose there is something not very mindful in me about criticizing it! I'll admit I'm not Buddhist and lean toward a bit of cynicism - but I don't think that's what was operating here. Still, I got one or two good points to ponder out of...more
Another wonderful wisdom filled book by Boorstein.
An excellent book on the subject of keeping emotional balance. This one I will probably have to own at some point.
"[A] small, polished gem of a book that seems somehow even more intimate and heartfelt than her previous books�.both convincing and inspiring." � Publishers Weekly (starred review)

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This is a book you will come back to many times. To create equanimity in oneself is what this book teaches in a gentle way thru stories and examples. I finished it today and will begin again a re-reading as soon as my copy arrives in the mail. I need to move my post-it notes from the library copy to my own copy. Thanks Sylvia for this little treasure.
Thought this was an interesting book, but it's not for people new to the subject of Buddhism, meditation or spirituality- I found it a little confusing at times but the overall premise was good. I will definitely be using some of the techniques in this book to help remain calm, positive and happy in the future.
Laura Siegel
I love Sylvia Boorstein. Her writing is simple, honest, compassionate, nurturing, and a joy to read. I love the way she uses personal stories to tell a deeper truth. I believe that anything written about the Buddhist practice should come across as simple as breathing. And this is always true for Boorstein's writing.
This book did not appeal to me as much as other Buddhist texts I have read. While I can't fault Boorstein for urging folks to find contentment in daily life (so important!), many of her examples demonstrated the relatively privileged life she lives. I prefer the texts of Pema Chodren, Thich Nhat Hanh, and some others.
Sylvia tells excellent stories and teaches wonderful techniques for mindfulness and compassion. I especially like a mindful blessing called 'One Breath, One Name'. I've been using it since I first read about it for the people of Japan- and for my family, friends, colleagues, and everyone I know and see.
If there was a possibility for four and a half stars, I would give this four and a half. This is a marvelous book. The blurbs praise Boorstein's ability to tell stories, but I liked the book for its precise definitions of Buddhist practices and understandings. Highly recommended.
Reading this for my mindfulness meditation class, taught by Nancy Rubel at Mindful Moments in Beachwood. Sylvia Boorstein is my teacher's mentor, so this has personal significance for her and it is one of the best classes I have taken from her (and an excellent book).
Micah McCarty
Another good yet simple foray into the Buddhist mindset. I first heard the author on On Being with Krysta Tippett and fell in love with her deep wisdom on life. This book was full of her stories and practical application of Buddhist teachings. I highly enjoyed it.
Julia Wilson
This is a lovely little book from a very wise woman. I think she has lots of good 'kitchen table' wisdom and some suggestions, backed up by stories from her life, that would be good for anyone in this hurry-up, me-first society to ponder.
i am a big fan of sylvia boorstein. this book missed the mark for me. there were a few stories
that stuck with me, but i have a difficult time practicing meditations described in books.
i was hoping for something a bit more practical.
When I saw this title in my library's new books section, I thought it was another "5 steps to a happy life" self-help book. It's actually a very engaging book that applies Buddhist principles of mindfulness and compassion to daily life.
Good book. Readable, and had good memorable stories. Honestly, it deserves another star or two, but I think I've read one too many books on Buddhism to get really excited. Check it out. For the stories, if nothing else.
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Sylvia Boorstein (born 1936) is an American writer and Buddhist spiritualist.
More about Sylvia Boorstein...
It's Easier Than You Think: The Buddhist Way to Happiness Pay Attention, for Goodness' Sake: Practicing the Perfections of the Heart--The Buddhist Path of Kindness That's Funny, You Don't Look Buddhist: On Being a Faithful Jew and a Passionate Buddhist Don't Just Do Something, Sit There: A Mindfulness Retreat with Sylvia Boorstein Solid Ground: Buddhist Wisdom for Difficult Times

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May I feel contented and safe.
May I feel protected and pleased.
May my physical body support me with strength.
May my life unfold smoothly with ease.
[p. 71]”
“All losses are sad. The end of an important relationship is also a death. When people fall out of love with each other, or when what seemed like a solid friendship falls into ruin, the hope for a shared future--a hope that provided a context and a purpose to life--is gone. [p. 149]” 7 likes
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