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Simple Abundance: A Daybook of Comfort of Joy

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With the grace of Anne Morrow Lindbergh's Gift From the Sea and the wisdom of M. Scott Peck's The Road Less Traveled, Simple Abundance is a book of 366 evocative essays - one for every day of your year - written for women who wish to live by their own lights.

In the past a woman's spirituality has been seperated from her lifestyle. Simple Abundance shows you how your daily life can be an expression of your authentic self . . . as you choose the tastiest vegetables from your garden, search for treasures at flea markets, establish a sacred space in your home for meditation, and follow the rhythm of the seasons and the year. Here, for the first time, the mystical alchemy of style and Spirit is celebrated. Every day, your own true path leads you to a happier, more fulfilling and contented way of life - the state of grace known as . . . Simple Abundance

528 pages, Hardcover

First published January 1, 1995

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About the author

Sarah Ban Breathnach

35 books487 followers
In addition to SIMPLE ABUNDANCE, Sarah Ban Breathnach is the author of THE SIMPLE ABUNDANCE JOURNAL OF GRATITUDE, SOMETHING MORE, and MRS. SHARP'S TRADITIONS. She currently resides in California. Please visit her website at www.simpleabundance.com.

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5 stars
14,850 (38%)
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Displaying 1 - 30 of 670 reviews
Profile Image for Carey.
Author 1 book21 followers
January 14, 2010
of course this book is cheesy. of course it's a cliche. of course it's tempting to shrug off any of the good in it in favor of trashing sarah's personal life. and of course i wasn't the target audience for it as a 19-year-old college student back in 1998, and i'm still not the target audience 10 years later. but i credit this book for helping me weather a particularly difficult depressive episode in the first half of '98 and come out of it transformed--not into someone new, but into my authentic self--something i'd spent most of my adolescence and the first half of college trying to hide. so yeah. i love this book. and i'm not ashamed. mostly.
Profile Image for Bam cooks the books ;-).
1,816 reviews225 followers
December 22, 2018
This book changed my life for the better, plain and simple, when it was first published. I read it again every few years to refresh the lessons learned.

Notes from 2018: some of the meditations seem a bit dated since this was first written 23 years ago but the nuggets of truth remain. I was surprised and pleased that my adult daughter requested a copy for herself for Christmas this year. I hope it has the same impact on her life as it has on mine.
Profile Image for Kathrynn.
1,170 reviews
November 3, 2008
I have a lot of found memories about this book. It is a book about self, featuring a short essay to read each day. It is set up in calendar format and wonderfully written to inspire peace in one's life. A book I will never part with!
Profile Image for Denise みか Hutchins.
389 reviews10 followers
December 20, 2016
I didn't read even half of this book in total, I admit up front. This isn't the type of book that a person needs to read for more than a few pages to know whether it's for them or not. I therefore feel proud of myself for spending as much time as I did on it. When I initially read the description for "Simple Abundance" it really seemed like something I would love: how to improve your life one day at a time through introspection and appreciation of what you already have. Who wouldn't benefit from such a mindset? It only took a few entries to see that the philosophy presented here was written from a very specific point of view and rarely made itself accessible to those outside its limited scope, such as myself. It seems that in order to really enjoy this book and take anything of substance from it, the reader must be: female, married, a parent, of Judeo-Christian faith, and Generation X or older.

Although the author is female, I did not expect based on the title and subtitle that the book would be exclusively aimed at the author's fellow women. That in itself wouldn't bother me but because the book's idea of what a woman is or strives to be is so narrow, I was swiftly excluded despite meeting one of the main enjoyment criteria. The next requirement, to be married, actually occurred for me in the middle of my course of reading, but like my status as female, it didn't really matter. The idea of married life in this book is just as limited as the idea of womanhood. Indeed, the rest of the enjoyment requirements stem from this limited view. So much of the advice is based on having kids and practicing either Christianity or, to a much lesser extent, Judaism. All of that is what brings in the final requirement of age. This book is something I could perhaps see my mother getting into but it fits even better with my grandmother; it's exactly the type of thing she would have lived her life by. In fact it wouldn't surprise me, based on what I read, if my grandmother really had known of and adhered to this book's principles.

But even when throwing away my own perspective and thinking of this book as something written for a baby boomer, a big issue remains: I really don't find "Simple Abundance" very simple at all. The overarching principles by which the reader is meant to live their life are so numerous and complex that it seems impossible for a person to actually remember them all even if they followed the book day-by-day. At first, the plan actually seems pretty straightforward: simple abundance comes from finding one's authentic self. I can agree with that, I would love to live my life based on a foundation of personal authenticity. The how-to is where is gets tricky. From the entry for December 24th, the following principles of Simple Abundance are italicized: gratitude, simplicity, order, harmony, beauty, and joy. They all sound lovely and are excellent things to strive for in one's life, but a philosophy based on so many ideas is too much for this reader to remember. Even if I was someone who intended to follow this book not just every day for a year but every day for however many years it took to really live and breathe its philosophy, there's just no way "Simple Abundance" lives up to its name. It seems to take the course of a year not because it wants to use that time to show how its principles can be applied to different situations throughout the changing months but instead because it takes at least a year to really get through everything it has to say. If a reader intended to actually mold their life on “Simple Abundance” I believe it would take at least two year-long read-throughs: one to learn everything and a second to put it into practice.

The most unfortunate aspect of this book is that it actually did have some wonderful entries. Even considering I only read a few days throughout summer, a bit at the start of January, and all of December, I still managed to find a day here and there that actually spoke to me. It was often when the author managed to share her daily topic in a way that was relatively inclusive. Even those instances, however, easily came across as someone talking to an in-group person about an out-group person whose lifestyle they find admirable and worthy of imitation. I found these little gold nuggets among the rocks, but I still felt like they weren't really meant for me, like it was a coincidence that I found value in them, and that's what's so unfortunate.

Maybe if I had been born a few decades earlier, maybe if I found organized religion compelling, maybe if I had led a more (stereo)typical American life, maybe then would this book have been of value to me. I do feel that even today it has an audience, only that the audience is shrinking and the scope grows ever narrower as the years go by. This is not a book for the ages but perhaps it is still one that helped shape the world as it is. Perhaps the reason my life is so different and therefore incompatible with this book is partially thanks to the influence the book already had on the generations that came before me, the generations it was originally written for. Perhaps it came into my hands too late to be appreciated as it was originally meant to be. And so perhaps its growing obsolescence is not evidence of its weakness so much as proof of its work already having been generally completed.
Profile Image for Mary.
1 review2 followers
January 26, 2009
I bought this book back in 1998. It is my favorite book of all. Each day you read a small section for that day. It is very inspiring and informative. Not only does the author, Sarah ban Breathnach, give me something positive to reach for but I usually learn little tid-bits of interesting, historical trivia. If I go a few days and forget to read this book, after I pick it up and begin again, I am "back on top" of things and looking at the world from a much sweeter perspective. I highly recommend it and have given one to each of my daughters and dauhter-in-law. I wrote little notes to myself about this book, one in 1998, one in 2001 and the last one in 2006 says, "A ray of light in a hard world. It makes me feel good. I truly love this book. It is like a trusted friend." There is a companion gratitude journal to go with this, as this is all about creatng an "attitude of gratitude".
Profile Image for Vanessa.
171 reviews8 followers
January 4, 2017
A gift from my mom - I've been reading this book off and on for a few years. I really have come to like it lately - it helps me keep my head on straight. The only "exercise" I've actually done from the book is a gratitude journal. It's amazing how much it helps to write down three things I'm grateful for before I go to bed, especially on those horrible, terrible, no-good days.
Profile Image for Loraine.
2,911 reviews
January 4, 2018
This book looked and sounded like a good devotional. Unfortunately, after 3 days of reading it, I decided not to. The author is Catholic and rather than referring to God she keeps using the word Spirit (and not in reference to the Holy Spirit). I almost felt like it was written from a New Age viewpoint.
Profile Image for Gia.
32 reviews4 followers
August 1, 2009
I loved this book when I first read it in 1996. I loved the ideas for appreciating each season, and how it encouraged you to live your authentic life. I did a lot of the exercises in it too, like creating a book with all pictures in it that you like to learn your true style. I had a little trouble with the "gratitude journal" though. I found it difficult to do on a nightly basis. But I loved everything else this book suggests. My all-time favorite is the "Living Easter Basket" which is a basket filled with live grass. The book has the directions, and I tried it back in the day, and got lots of compliments, but then didn't do it again until 2008 for my stepdaughter's Easter basket. Simple Abundance should really be called "Be Good to Yourself for Dummies." But I say that in a reverent way!
Profile Image for Monique.
91 reviews2 followers
November 1, 2022
DNF (put in recycling, something I almost never do). It appealed to me but too much toxic mixed with the good: goddess stuff, fake religion, feminism, self-esteem, self-indulgence in unhealthy forms. Would not be good for my soul especially taken everyday.

I would suggest for daily reading instead:

Prayers and Devotions by Pope John Paul II
George Macdonald by C. S. Lewis
Divine Intimacy by Father Gabriel of St Mary Magdalene

Of those three, I've only read extensively in Divine Intimacy. But all of them impress me as much more wholesome than this one.
Profile Image for Kai Crawford.
142 reviews27 followers
July 6, 2019
Let me begin with the flaws in this book. Yes, it is often incredibly cringey. Certain parts of it have not aged well. It is noticeably written with the middle-aged, Christian, white, housewife audience in mind. It can be rather patronizing at times. Many articles focus on delightful topics relevant to women in 2019 such as curating a perfect linen closet or scrapbooking your dream life. If those are your jam, that’s great. I admit that they made me want to roll my eyes at times. Other phrases that made me recoil included “illustrated discovery journals”, “personal treasure map” collages, “golden mirror meditation”, the creation of a “hope chest/toy box/comfort drawer”, and constant reinforcement that baths can solve anything.

Despite the shortcomings I mentioned above, I really enjoyed this book. There are so many messages in it that have aged well. The essays about the joys of culling your wardrobe, the importance of gratitude, loving yourself, finding happiness and meaning in life, simplifying the home and making it a relaxing space, the importance of solitude in our lives, and finding joy in the daily mundane, have remained timeless. I think this advice will still hold strong after another 25 years.

Sarah Ban Breathnach’s writing gets pretty kitshy at times but it is nevertheless always sensitive, kind, and gentle. Sometimes, you just need someone to tell you that you are okay, that you are worthy, that you haven’t fucked things up beyond repair, that your life will be fine tomorrow, and this book does exactly that. It provides comfort and kindness when you're not feeling great. For every essay that made me roll my eyes, there were two that made me smile from how remarkably well-written and sensitive they were.

In addition to inspirational essays from the author’s own life and other works that have influenced her, the book is generously sprinkled with thoughtful quotes from a variety of people and mediums and time periods.

Sarah is unabashedly Christian, undeniably a mother, and unarguably a privileged white woman. I don't meet enough of those criteria to comfortably nod my head at everything she writes. I also don’t agree with her repeated reassurances that you will be provided everything you need, as long as you ask for it [from God]. That doesn’t take away from how charming, wholesome, comforting, and encouraging her essays are. She has a wonderful way of distilling simple, common truths into understated, unassuming gems.
As I have tried and failed and tried again, I have discovered that if we are to flourish as creative beings, if we are to grow into Wholeness, we must bloom wherever we are planted. Right now, you might not have the perfect career, home, or relationship. Few of us do. But if you have the gift of today, you’ve got another chance to re-create your circumstances and make them as perfect as it’s possible to do with the resources you have. Today, you get another chance to get it as right as you can make it. What more could you desire?”
Profile Image for Nafi3.
135 reviews26 followers
December 31, 2019
فراوانی مطلق (روزشمار زنانی که به دنبال آرامش‌اند)/ ترجمه فاطمه معتمدی/انتشارات روزنه/ ۷۷۴ صفحه
فراوانی مطلق کتاب روزشماریه (بر اساس سال میلادی) که برای هر روز متنی رو آماده کرده تا برای یک روز انگیزه‌ای رو در شما پدید بیاره. فرقی نداره شما یک زن خانه‌دار باشید یا کارمند. هر روز چیزی برای شما آورده شده که راهی رو برای طی کردن در طول سال بهتون نشون میده.
قسمت‌های زیادی از کتاب رو دوست داشتم اما خب چون کتاب بر اساس سال میلادی نوشته شده، خیلی از مناسبت‌ها یا برنامه‌هاش کاربردی نداره.

بخش‌هایی از متن کتاب:
* بزرگترین راز داشتن زندگی شاد و رضایت بخش، آگاهی بر این امر است که هر چیزی، پیش از آن که خود را در دنیای بیرون نشان دهد و آشکار کند، در فکر ما به وجود می‌آید و شکل می‌گیرد.

*ما تمایل داریم این‌گونه تصور کنیم که تنها وقایع مهم هستند که بر زندگی ما اثر می‌گذارند، حال آن که در واقع، رخدادهای جزئی و کوچک‌اند که در یاد و خاطره ما طنین می‌اندازند.

*انسان نمی‌تواند گذشته را تغییر دهد، تنها نفوذ و تسلطی که گذشته بر ما دارد تغییر کردنی است، و با آن که هیچ چیز در زندگی برگشت پذیر نیست، شما می‌توانید آن نفوذ و تسلط را برگردانید. (مرل شین)

*آنچه زنی برازنده و با وقار را از دیگران جدا می‌کند، اطمینان به خودِ ساکت اوست؛ او می‌داند که این اوست که ارزش مورد توجه واقع شدن را دارد، نه یک بغل دستبند و النگوی طلایی.
Profile Image for Helynne.
Author 3 books42 followers
July 6, 2009
This book was already a best-seller when my dad gave me a copy back in 1998, but I had never heard of it then, and didn't know what to expect. I plunged in, was immediately impressed, and now I give the book five stars because it made such a difference in my outlook on life at the time. These little essays are just plain feel-good stuff and inspirations for every occasion I can think of. Furthermore, these various missives (I have several favorites) continue to give me a little emotional boost whenever I need it. Sarah Ban Breathnach has written 366 short essays--one for each day of the year, not forgetting Feb. 29--on a variety of inspirational topics. Basically, her theme is that every woman can become "the woman she was meant to be," and suggests various ways in which a person can "find her authentic self" on a path she describes in a six-part journey beginning with gratitude, then progressing through awareness and practices of simplicity, order, harmony, beauty and joy. The January-February essays begin with daily assurances that every individual is of infinite worth, that there are benevolent forces in the universe that are helping each one of us to succeed and achieve our dreams, and that self-nurturing and pampering through little affordable luxuries and indulgences can help the most frazzled busy mom and/or career woman to relax and enjoy the daily wonders of life. Breathnach stresses the need for a daily gratitude journal in which one must write down each day at least five things in her life for which she is grateful. Once this becomes a habit, Breathnach urges women to experience "spiritual awakening" through such habits as meditation, "creating a personal sacred space," and "outfitting a comfort drawer." Later essays laud the joys of homemaking (Hestia is the goddess of homemaking who watches over us as we complete our routine household chores; even these are sacred), gardening, house plants, cooking, etc., I love the essays in which Breathnach inspires us all to value and develop our own untapped sources of creativity. Another of my favorites is "Meditation for Bad Girls" (Nov. 22), which is hilarious. She describes typical "bad girls" as having "blond, raven, or flaming tresses, red mouths and nails. Think Mae West, Rita Hayworth, Ava Gardner . . . Bad girls wear capri pants, mules, cashmere or mohair twinsets, silk scares covering their pin curls. . . Bad girls are passionate while the rest of the world is cool. . . Bad girls don't just want to have fun, they make sure they do . . . Bad girls know that it's not the cards you're dealt but how well you play your hand.. . . Bad girls realize this isn't a dress rehearsal. Real life is what you make of it." Breathnach ends this short piece by saying, "You can be bad, you can be good. You just sure as hell better be authentic." Lest I have made you think these essays are more naughty than nice, I'll hasten to add that there is a lot of spritual advice in many of these compositions, including a really nice treatise on Hanukkah (Dec. 6) that describes how important this Jewish observance should be to all Christians. I won't tell you what she says, but it's really interesting. I can't recommend this fun, inspirational book highly enough!
Profile Image for Gina House.
Author 2 books64 followers
December 30, 2022
This was my third time reading this daybook and it never disappoints. Sarah Ban Breathnach's writing makes me feel grounded, creative, inspired and overall more positive. I love reading an entry for every day of the year. The list of fun thing to do or experience during the month are fun to look at and also very handy when you're not sure how to be more mindful during the month. I only wish that the list was at the beginning, instead of at the end, of each month's section.

Highly recommended if you enjoy seasonal books, diaries, creative projects and books about women's lives. Simple Abundance is on my forever shelf for sure!
Profile Image for Janet.
322 reviews11 followers
June 8, 2010
When I was finally ready to read this book, I had to dig deep down into my pile of unread books to find it. I had gotten it years earlier after seeing Sarah on Oprah. I knew then that what she was teaching - to fully reside in the present and see the spiritual in the seemingly mundane - was exactly what I needed to grasp. The problem was that I was buried so deep in the mundane that I didn’t make this a priority until several years later.

Simple Abundance is a “day book”...to get the most out of it, you read just one passage per day and focus your energy on the philosophical lesson or practical task of the day. Being quite anal retentive when it comes to order, I didn’t allow myself to start until January 1 (thankfully, it was late in the year when I picked it up again!)...but, “normal” people can allow themselves to start on any given day. ;) To stay on track, I kept it by my dining room table so that every day at breakfast, I could read - and ponder - the day’s passage.

While this book didn’t adequately address my deeper spiritual needs, it definitely brought me to the present a little bit each day and helped me to readjust my attitude about cooking, laundry, cleaning, etc. It reminded me that preparing dinner was not only filling my family’s stomachs, but filling all of our spirits. It taught me that every “thing” I owned needed to connect with my spirit in some way. It reinforced the feeling I had that being organized on the outside helped me to achieve greater clarity on matters of the spirit. The details, the mundane, the seemingly unimportant are just as significant as the significant moments that are scattered throughout our lives...they are the bulk of life.

Simple Abundance was a great starting point for my adventure into the spiritual wilderness. It changed my outlook on my life. After a few months, I found myself faltering a bit...it takes continuous effort to be in the moment and stay positive about the mundane. I may start reading it again...on January 1, 2011. ;) Or, I may check out her other book: Something More: Excavating Your Authentic Self. (Fortunately, this one is not buried very deep in my “To Read” pile...in fact, if I turn my head to the right I can see it right next to my dining room table.)
Profile Image for Brittany.
228 reviews
January 27, 2012
This is one of my mom's favorite books. In fact, she loves the book so much, that she went to a workshop from Sarah Breathnach in California one year.

I tried to read this book when I was a teenager but couldn't relate to it at the time so I dropped it. I think this book is more directed to women about ages 20+ years.

Reading this book was quite entertaining for me since it brought so many memories of growing up with a mom who followed a lot of the suggestions from this book. I often read passages in the book where I thought, "Oh that's where my mom got that idea. My mom totally does this and does that, etc."

In fact, my mom STILL does a lot of the suggestions in the book. This book is like my mom's second bible - she is one of the best examples to me of someone who really lives the simple abundance lifestyle. As I read this book, I felt like I basically grew up with simple abundance - so a lot of the ideas and principles in the book were not new to me.

I would give this book 5 stars for the overall message of simple abundance since it's basically the motto of my life. But I felt like some entries were better than others. Some entries were really quirky and I couldn't quite relate to them. The book was published in 1995 - so some of the references are a bit dated (i.e. I wasn't familiar with some of the people, books, movies, etc. mentioned).

Other than that, I really liked the book and I would consider reading it again down the road (or at least re-reading the passages that I liked and that I highlighted). The overall message of simple abundance is timeless.
Profile Image for Deb in UT.
1,224 reviews16 followers
August 29, 2019
This book was given to me as a gift from a friend. At a book club she mentioned this as one of her favorite books that had deeply changed her life. It was published in the early 1990s, but it still feels somewhat relevant.

The only problem for me is I'm a daily scripture reader, so having another daily book to read doesn't work well. It's just one more thing. Breathnach says some think of this as their pink Bible. I'm not surprised. It's full of good advice and some truth. My problem is I have enough "shoulds" already in my life and this book is full of suggestions.

Even so, I learned some things from the book. I especially like that it led me to at least three other good self-help-type books. Daily, I read from July 26th to today, August 29th. Then each day I read as much as I could starting at the beginning of the book, January 1st, until the present. Then I went to the end of the book, December 31st, and worked my way back to tomorrow. It took too long. There's so much here to think about and to do. I understand how reading one daily entry would be easier. I just didn't want her ideas to be present at the forefront of my mind for so long. I wanted to read what she has to say, take what is helpful, and then move on to other things.

Part of the problem is at one point I was reading five books at a time which was a bit too much for me. I probably shouldn't read more than three books at a time, not including my scripture reading of course.
Profile Image for Jeanne.
29 reviews3 followers
March 10, 2009
I have started this book three times and never made it past March. I don't know if it's because I get distracted or if it's because Sarah Ban Breathnach is always talking about her family and the kids and all of the responsibilities of a mom and wife -- and I can't relate. Or maybe I just get bored. I have learned some important tips that I've found helpful (my fav is what I call my "happy drawer") where I keep stuff that makes me happy so it's there when I need it. Maybe I'm just stubborn -- those glowing five star reviews should tell you that I am the exception and not the norm with this one.
Profile Image for Virginia.
289 reviews46 followers
January 6, 2008
Excellent book.

the entire month of June sucked.

But I think I am the absolute antithesis of "home maker" so that might explain it.

Others, who enjoy doing things such as "tucking muffins" and tying up towels with grosgrain ribbons might enjoy her month of June.

Otherwise, great stuff.

Also, eerily on the mark, for some days. Like, I'd open up the book and all of a sudden she'd have a quote from a book that I'd just read, and had never heard of before, or address EXACTLY my problem on the day I was having it.

Profile Image for Laura.
67 reviews
December 31, 2021
This book was given to me for my 70th Birthday by a good friend.
I looked forward to my reading to start my day. I realized that any age you should be who you WANT to be. "Never forget that all you have is all you need".
Offers insight to women of any age.

Profile Image for Ugnė Butkutė.
138 reviews7 followers
December 31, 2021
Ši kelionė truko 365 dienas. Tikėjausi mažiau apie Viktorijos laikų puodelius bei namų stilių, bet daugiau apie gyvenimą ir pamokymus.

Neabejoju, jog 1995 metais ji galėjo būti puikus vienų metų palydovas nusivylusioms JAV namų šeimininkėms. Visgi, mano akimis knyga neišlaikė 27 metų išbandymo.

Tikrai nerekomenduoju. Verčiau čiupkit Melody Beattie knygą “The Language of Letting Go”. Knygos mintis labai panaši, tačiau man kur kas labiau patiko! Tiesa, nepabaigiau jos skaityti, nes pdf formatas tiesiog baisiai netiko tokiai knygai. Lauksiu progos įsigyti spausdintą variantą!
Profile Image for Ina.
78 reviews8 followers
April 18, 2022
Gave up on this book on 18th April after three and a half months of daily reading. It's not a bad book. It does convey that gentle, loving, nurturing, female-centric self-care sentiment that I believe the author was going for. The quotes were well selected and not the same ones we've all heard and read before. I do get a sense that a lot of thought and love went into the book.

It just wasn't a good fit for me at this time. The monthly themes and daily exercises and my current life circumstances were mismatched.

I also wasn't enamored with some of the New Age language and the somewhat sloppy use of the term 'authentic self', but that alone wouldn't have been enough to dissuade me from reading.
Profile Image for leah geisler.
163 reviews
December 31, 2022
This was my third year reading this book every day, and it no longer resonates with me the way it once did.
Three years ago I would have given this book a 5 out of 5. There is still a lot to gain from reading it, especially the focus on becoming one's Authentic Self and getting in tune with the divine through the different seasons of the year. I still really enjoy the authentic activity sections at the end of each month especially.
A part of my disdain for this book now is that it is so female-centric. As I have evolved in my own identity, the gendered language has made me grow tired. It certainly does not help that this was written in the 90s.
Although this book was my first introduction to the literary realm of self-help and mindset shift, there are better versions of the same ideas now.
Profile Image for Candace.
Author 2 books74 followers
December 17, 2019
Oh goodness, I read this when it first came out and I'm not sure how it never ended up on the list of my books. It was transforming for me at a time when I needed it, and I am grateful for that experience. I'm giving it as a Christmas gift to a friend this year and hope that she, too, has a wonderful year of Simple Abundance.
Profile Image for C.
697 reviews
January 16, 2020
This book is weird and dated and problematic but also wonderful in its own particular way. It has daily entries and I liked it so much that I actually kept up with reading it for the entire year last year.
140 reviews
December 31, 2022
Daily reading first thing in the morning is now a habit for me thanks to this book. I looked forward to each thought provoking passage every day for a year and reflecting on it. Some were not relevant to me at all but many were extremely relevant and inspired me tremendously.
Profile Image for Evelyn.
571 reviews20 followers
December 31, 2017
I started reading this collection of essays on January 1, 2017 and faithfully read the daily selection each day this year, finishing this morning. Many were inspirational, some thought provoking, and others were validating.
This one sums it all up nicely, I think
"Authentic success is having time enough to pursue personal pursuits that give you pleasure, time enough to make the loving gestures for your family you long to do, time enough to care for your home, tend your garden, nurture your soul. Authentic success is never having to tell yourself or those you love, "maybe next year." Authentic success is knowing that if today were your last day on earth, you could leave without regret. Authentic success is feeling focused and serene when you work, not fragmented. It's knowing that you've done the best that you possibly can, no matter what circumstances you faced; it's knowing in your soul that the best you can do is all you can do, and that the best you can do is always enough.
Authentic success is accepting your limitations, making peace with your past, and revelling in your passions so that your future may unfold according to a Divine Plan. It's discovering and calling forth your gifts and offering them to the world to help heal its ravaged heart. It's making a difference in other lives and believing that if you can do that for just one person each day, through a smile, a shared laugh, a caress, a kind word, or a helping hand, blessed are you among women.
Authentic success is not just money in the bank but a contented heart and peace of mind. It's earning what you feel you deserve for the work you do and knowing that you're worth it. Authentic success is paying your bills with ease, taking care of all your needs and the needs of those you love, indulging some wants, and having enough left over to save and share. Authentic success is not about accumulating but letting go, because all you have is all you truly need. Authentic success is feeling good about who you are, appreciating where you've been, celebrating your achievements, and honouring the distance you've already come. Authentic success is reaching the point where being is as important as doing. It's the steady pursuit of a dream. It's realizing that no matter how much time it takes for a dream to come true in the physical world, no day is ever wasted. It's valuing inner, as well as outer, labour - both your own and others'. It's elevating labour to a craft and craft to an art by bestowing Love on every task you undertake.
Authentic success is knowing how simply abundant your life is exactly as it is today. Authentic success is being so grateful for the many blessings bestowed on you and yours that you can share your portion with others.
Authentic success is living each day with a heart overflowing."
Profile Image for Dani Devine.
2 reviews
July 23, 2019
Was introduced to this book the first time I was admitted to the psychiatric inpatient unit and it quite literally helped to change my life. It only takes a page a day but it reminds you to appreciate the little things and practicing gratitude is a great way to combat suicidal ideation. Thank you <3
335 reviews
July 27, 2016
No, I didn't finish it. Not the book for me. My rule (which works pretty well for fiction) is to try to read at least 25%, and generally by that time I'm into the book and go ahead and finish it. It didn't work so well here.

I immediately felt a disconnect with this book. It seemed a little too preachy. But I decided to stick with it. Like some others, I did get a worthwhile push from her discussion of the gratitude journal, and I applied that lesson to my prayer journal which has a section for "thanks."

But her other exercises didn't appeal to me. And, to be honest, I don't think I need help in finding my "authentic self."

The book title uses the term "simple abundance" and she would refer to it often. I felt I would have appreciated an overview of what she meant by it. The piecemeal explanations just weren't giving me a big picture.

Still, I had promised myself to read through whatever page corresponds to April 1. (Oddly, there are no page numbers in this huge tome.)

But the more I read the more she reminded me of what I dislike about Martha Stewart and her ilk. Her new-age spirituality was a turn-off, although she apparently was trying hard not to offend anybody who isn't religious. I am religious, and don't mind saying so.

Late in Feb., she challenged her readers - had they been doing those exercises from January? The gratitude journal and 3 or 4 others. She said something to the effect that if the reader wasn't doing those, they should give the book away to somebody who wanted to take the journey with her. I guess I should have listened.

Still, it was only a bit more than one month's worth of essays. So I stuck it out. And now I'm celebrating the fact that I am DONE with this book. Others may feel differently. So the book goes back to the public library to be available for them
Profile Image for Deb Ausley.
19 reviews1 follower
February 19, 2017
My go to book I read year after year. Love this book which reminds me to center myself thru gratitude, simplicity, order, harmony, beauty and joy.
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