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Happiness: The Art Of Living With Peace, Confidence And Joy

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In the midst of a successful business career, Doug Smith received life-altering news that set him on an entirely new journey to understand what leads to truly joyful, meaningful living—-in other words, what leads to happiness. Through research and study he begins to understand what the most joyful among us have in common is that they remember the past with peace, anticipat In the midst of a successful business career, Doug Smith received life-altering news that set him on an entirely new journey to understand what leads to truly joyful, meaningful living—-in other words, what leads to happiness. Through research and study he begins to understand what the most joyful among us have in common is that they remember the past with peace, anticipate the future with confidence and live in the present with joy and exuberance. He further discovers that what gives them this perspective is a set of skills that they consistently, even if subconsciously, practice. He also realizes that he is not particularly good at several of these skills. In Happiness: The Art of Living with Peace, Confidence and Joy the author recounts, with insight and humor his journey to better understand and practice the skills of happiness with the goal of helping others on their own paths to joyful, meaningful living.


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In the midst of a successful business career, Doug Smith received life-altering news that set him on an entirely new journey to understand what leads to truly joyful, meaningful living—-in other words, what leads to happiness. Through research and study he begins to understand what the most joyful among us have in common is that they remember the past with peace, anticipat In the midst of a successful business career, Doug Smith received life-altering news that set him on an entirely new journey to understand what leads to truly joyful, meaningful living—-in other words, what leads to happiness. Through research and study he begins to understand what the most joyful among us have in common is that they remember the past with peace, anticipate the future with confidence and live in the present with joy and exuberance. He further discovers that what gives them this perspective is a set of skills that they consistently, even if subconsciously, practice. He also realizes that he is not particularly good at several of these skills. In Happiness: The Art of Living with Peace, Confidence and Joy the author recounts, with insight and humor his journey to better understand and practice the skills of happiness with the goal of helping others on their own paths to joyful, meaningful living.

30 review for Happiness: The Art Of Living With Peace, Confidence And Joy

  1. 5 out of 5

    Suji

    Received the book for free through Goodreads First Reads. This is a simple must read that is not overwhelming at all. This is the first author that has written a note for me in the book. The simple action of personalizing the book gave me happiness. I love how the author shares his personal journey about his health, family, and work. Glad he includes God as part of the experience to happiness because I feel the relationship I have with God is similar to his in the beginning of the book. I agree wi Received the book for free through Goodreads First Reads. This is a simple must read that is not overwhelming at all. This is the first author that has written a note for me in the book. The simple action of personalizing the book gave me happiness. I love how the author shares his personal journey about his health, family, and work. Glad he includes God as part of the experience to happiness because I feel the relationship I have with God is similar to his in the beginning of the book. I agree with him 100% on how asking God for things is somewhat awkward. I like that the writing was not filled with overwhelming research and data. I like the tone and language of the author as well because it felt as if I was listening to his lectures from his course on happiness, or that you are having a conversation with friend. The references on other books and about positive psychology was interesting and opened my curiosity to learning more on the subject. The pictures and especially the graphs were a wonderful addition to the book because it is easier for me to understand things visually. The thing I remember most vividly is the Sufi tale. Honestly, that tale has change the way I see life moments. Before I would always think myself not particularly lucky or blessed but now I see that life is about perceptive and the unknown. I find myself saying that "Good news, bad news--who knows" every time I think something is not going my way. That saying really helps me live in the moment and stop my countless worry about my future. Thank you Douglas A. Smith I plan to follow your skills that lead to peace with the past, present, and future.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Richard Duncan

    I "stumbled" across this book in the library. I am glad I did. I think God led me to it in this year of my pursuit of joy. Smith has a business background and takes a simple, no-nonsense, street-telling, workman's approach to this vital topic. This is an accessible treatment of the topic. Smith has faced challenges in life - a child with a disability and cancer. But these have not been set-backs for him. They have become set-forths! Smith is not a particularly religious person. But he does seem I "stumbled" across this book in the library. I am glad I did. I think God led me to it in this year of my pursuit of joy. Smith has a business background and takes a simple, no-nonsense, street-telling, workman's approach to this vital topic. This is an accessible treatment of the topic. Smith has faced challenges in life - a child with a disability and cancer. But these have not been set-backs for him. They have become set-forths! Smith is not a particularly religious person. But he does seem to recognize God and seeks to give God thanks for the many blessings of life that Smith recognizes are gifts. Smith has become a coach to business leaders and actually teaches a course on happiness at DePauw University. He is well-read on the science of happiness and has boiled down the literature to 3 habits encompassing 14 practices/skills. Habit 1: Make peace with the past. Habit 2: Face the future with confidence. Habit 3: Live in the present with joy. Smith shares his failures and shortcomings as he takes us on his journey to find more happiness. I like the simplicity and profundity of his approach. I'm going to buy my own copy. Highly recommended. *** I see Smith's approach in the scriptures. Whether he knows it or not, he's teaching biblical truths! How to live with greater gladness Tucked away in Colossians 1 is a simple prayer that points us toward three habits of life that will enable us to live with more joy. In the ESV, Colossians 1:11-12 has 39 words. At the heart of the text is the word "joy" - preceded by 19 words and followed by 19 more. Joy is at the heart of 3 habits that can help deal with our past, present, and future. 1. Dependence: Live in the present with strength from God (Colossians 1:11a ). 2. Gratitude: Think of the past with thanks to God (Colossians 1:12a ). 3. Optimism: Look to the future with hope in God (Colossians 1:12b ). Ask God often for the grace to live this way. And watch your joy grow and grow. 11 May you be strengthened with all power, according to His glorious might, for all endurance and patience with joy, 12 giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of the saints in light (Colossians 1:11-12).

  3. 5 out of 5

    Becky

    This book came into my life at a perfect time and SPOKE to me. (and I KNOW that sounds INCREDIBLY corny because I'm NOT usually a self-help, new-agey kinda girl. In fact, I would classify myself more as a skeptical, hard-working, deep thinking realist.) While I've always considered myself to be a "happy" person, it's seemed like life has been conspiring against me the last few years. Aging, illness, family concerns, and financial uncertainty have combined to transform me into much more of a "wor This book came into my life at a perfect time and SPOKE to me. (and I KNOW that sounds INCREDIBLY corny because I'm NOT usually a self-help, new-agey kinda girl. In fact, I would classify myself more as a skeptical, hard-working, deep thinking realist.) While I've always considered myself to be a "happy" person, it's seemed like life has been conspiring against me the last few years. Aging, illness, family concerns, and financial uncertainty have combined to transform me into much more of a "worrier." I long to return to the more peaceful, confident, joyful person I used to be and I hoped this book would deliver on its title. I found Doug Smith to be a very accomplished and wise man. His varied life experiences and passion qualify him to identify and teach the skills necessary to live a happy life. He is a former CEO of 3 major corporations and is currently a university professor and lecturer. In his personal life, he is a husband of 45 years and father to 2 boys - one of whom is mentally handicapped. He also has been forced to face his own mortality by battling an incurable form of blood cancer. Doug's writing reflects all of these aspects and rings true. He is analytical and intellectual but his candid stories are insightful and relatable. He believes in God but he also believes that finding true happiness is an fundamental skill that can be honed. In Happiness, he provides a detailed guide that assists the reader where they are and directs them to where they want to be. I found the book to be highly readable and the concepts to be logical and clearly defined. As each new concept was presented, I found myself nodding and thinking, "Yes, that's right. That makes sense in my life too." I wanted to share this book with my family and friends before I'd even finished it! By the end, I knew it was going to be my new go-to gift and book recommendation. Everyone wants to be happier and I honestly believe Douglas A. Smith's Happiness is an extremely useful reference that can be consulted and re-read as we evolve into our most peaceful, confident and joyful selves.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Valerie

    Lately I've been striving to do better, be better... I exercise regularly, do yoga, meditate daily, eat healthy, smile more, laugh a lot, strive to be kinder... By reading this book I know I am on the right path for a happy life and have discovered ways to cope with the ups and downs that may be thrown at me between now and the rest of my days. I've learned so much from the positive outlook on life from Mr. Smith and I highly recommend EVERYONE read this whether you are looking for answers or not. Lately I've been striving to do better, be better... I exercise regularly, do yoga, meditate daily, eat healthy, smile more, laugh a lot, strive to be kinder... By reading this book I know I am on the right path for a happy life and have discovered ways to cope with the ups and downs that may be thrown at me between now and the rest of my days. I've learned so much from the positive outlook on life from Mr. Smith and I highly recommend EVERYONE read this whether you are looking for answers or not. It will open your mind, your heart and therefore nourish your body and soul. I feel uplifted and empowered. Thank you Mr. Smith!

  5. 4 out of 5

    Katarina

    This book is amazing. It is so honest and deeply moving to follow the author on his path to defining, understanding and living the components that make up happiness. I am very touched, and learned a lot from this book.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Alison

    I received this book through first reads and was very excited! The strategies brought up in the book are super helpful. The author has some unique ideas and I enjoyed the illustrations as well. I do wish there were a little less personal stories throughout but I rally enjoyed this book!

  7. 5 out of 5

    Chris Cooke

    Doug's book is a great reminder for all of us that finding happiness is not easy but there is a way and Doug's book gives us the template. It is up to each of us to do the rest. Every person young and old should read Doug's book once a year. Doug's book is a great reminder for all of us that finding happiness is not easy but there is a way and Doug's book gives us the template. It is up to each of us to do the rest. Every person young and old should read Doug's book once a year.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Chelsea

    The president of the company I work for gave every employee in the company a copy of this book which I thought was wonderful! The author lives in Columbus, Ohio for much of his life and when he is writing this book so I thought that was awesome because our company is located in Columbus so it was great to read a book by a local author. The overall message of this book is wonderful and I am going to make sure I reread this book at least once a year, hopefully even more. He breaks the book up into The president of the company I work for gave every employee in the company a copy of this book which I thought was wonderful! The author lives in Columbus, Ohio for much of his life and when he is writing this book so I thought that was awesome because our company is located in Columbus so it was great to read a book by a local author. The overall message of this book is wonderful and I am going to make sure I reread this book at least once a year, hopefully even more. He breaks the book up into three parts, past, present, and future. Then he goes into discussing how to deal with all three subjects in order to achieve happiness. The book is short and concise. After getting a life-changing diagnosis, the author goes on a journey of learning about how to live a happier life. During his journey, he is asked to be a visiting professor for a college course and he ends up teaching the course on happiness so he really knows what he is talking about and has done extensive research on the topic. Overall, I highly recommend this book and think everyone should read it.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Suzanne

    I heard Doug Smith speak and then talked with him at a conference last fall. He was so humble, genuine and passionate about his search for peace, confidence, and joy. His ideas are not just how to be happy for happiness sake. They are based on sound psychological principles and on his own life experiences. This is an easy read, but rich with information.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Adam Luck

    I can’t say there have been many books that have changed my way of thinking but this book absolutely did. I highly recommend it.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Weston N

    Not incredibly profound, but a book that helps the reader recenter on what is important in life and how to take steps toward achieving it.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Lindsay

    I received this book from the author as part of the Goodreads giveaway program. I received the book directly from the author whom had included a personal note, which I thought was a nice touch (but don't worry - it didn't influence my review one way or another). I liked this book and would give it 3.5 stars. Initially after finishing the book, I admit that I was somewhat indifferent towards it. Yet after a little reflection, I realized that I really enjoyed the book and learned quite a bit from i I received this book from the author as part of the Goodreads giveaway program. I received the book directly from the author whom had included a personal note, which I thought was a nice touch (but don't worry - it didn't influence my review one way or another). I liked this book and would give it 3.5 stars. Initially after finishing the book, I admit that I was somewhat indifferent towards it. Yet after a little reflection, I realized that I really enjoyed the book and learned quite a bit from it. Happiness begins with the author recounting the heartbreaking tale of his cancer diagnosis and the shock and fear that accompanied it. Realizing that his time is limited and wanting to make the most of it, Smith delves into what happiness is and to obtain it, not only theoretically, but also in his own life. In Happiness... he provides thirteen skills he believes are necessary to be happy. Each skill is identified and examined thoroughly. I've read quite a few books on the subject of happiness, many of which are quite good. I particularly enjoyed Mr. Smith's perspective because he understands that achieving happiness is a never-ending journey. The book describes Smith's own challenges with the skills of happiness and how he overcame those challenges. Smith's positive outlook and genuine gratitude for everything around him opened my eyes to how I viewed the world. Happiness is a short and easy read. The author even includes a few lists and diagrams (heaven for a nerd like me) to break up monotonous text. If you're short on time, the appendix at the back gives a brief summary of each happiness skill. However, I don't think you would regret it if you read all 192 pages.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Ellie

    I received this book for free through Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. To be quite honest, this isn't the kind of book that I would read on a regular day but it arrived at such an opportune time in my life that I saw it as a gift to just read it. Having just recently found out that I have chronic idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura (a blood disorder, although not as deadly), I easily connected with the author's situation. I found myself somehow headed towards an emotional downward spir I received this book for free through Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. To be quite honest, this isn't the kind of book that I would read on a regular day but it arrived at such an opportune time in my life that I saw it as a gift to just read it. Having just recently found out that I have chronic idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura (a blood disorder, although not as deadly), I easily connected with the author's situation. I found myself somehow headed towards an emotional downward spiral that has started to affect my relationships with people. Dealing with unhappiness has always been a struggle for me, and this book has superbly outlines the things I needed to know about how to be content with what I have. There really is a big difference with having things outlined, the way the author has done so exquisitely, eloquently and personally. Suffice to say I learned a lot, not just with ways on how to pursue happiness but also in taking care of other aspects of my life. What I love most about the book was the way the skills set were summarized at the end. It is a clear way of understanding and accepting which areas I am immensely lacking at and areas that need a little working with. I can already tell that the book has made a positive impact on my thinking.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Sam

    The first couple pages of introduction were a little hard to get through but once thought about the skills he taught and pondered whether he lived it. My attention was caught, and did not waver. Mr. Smith’s grip on me didn’t leave as I stopped all my current plans and focused instead of reading his book, crystallizing the concepts into my mind. Looking at his list of skills I see areas where I am deficient and feel nothing but gratitude towards the knowledge that I am young and I have the abilit The first couple pages of introduction were a little hard to get through but once thought about the skills he taught and pondered whether he lived it. My attention was caught, and did not waver. Mr. Smith’s grip on me didn’t leave as I stopped all my current plans and focused instead of reading his book, crystallizing the concepts into my mind. Looking at his list of skills I see areas where I am deficient and feel nothing but gratitude towards the knowledge that I am young and I have the ability to work to enhance these skills. Life is a journey, and due to his beautiful book I now that regardless of circumstances, that how I react will determine how much joy I will attain from each of my actions. There is a phrase I love, “Life is pain, suffering is option,” truer words are rare to find. I highly recommend reading this book, it may change the way you view your life, it has certainly changed the way I view mine.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Ellen Pilch

    I won this book on Goodreads- that made me Happy. I am actually very happy that I won this out of all the other contests as I found it very useful and I am going to pass it on to my mom who was diagnosed with cancer last year. Much of Douglas Smith's advice is stuff I have heard before about the power of positive thinking, exercise, eating right and forgiveness. The way he presents the material is whay makes it stick. He tells of examples in his life and he admits to his own failures. I found hi I won this book on Goodreads- that made me Happy. I am actually very happy that I won this out of all the other contests as I found it very useful and I am going to pass it on to my mom who was diagnosed with cancer last year. Much of Douglas Smith's advice is stuff I have heard before about the power of positive thinking, exercise, eating right and forgiveness. The way he presents the material is whay makes it stick. He tells of examples in his life and he admits to his own failures. I found him to be quite honest about areas he is still working on. He also admits to having some difficulties when his disabled son was first born. He realizes that his son is a gift, but many parents would never admit to feeling bad at all. I like that the author put a very sweet inscription in the front of the book. It made me feel like I had met him, I do hope to attend a class of his some day. I highly recommend this book to anyone who wants to be happpy- and who doesn't?

  16. 5 out of 5

    Toni

    I did enjoy this book. I found it quite helpful on many levels. But I only wish there were more techniques and things we can personally do to make our journey a happier one. I felt like I needed to take Mr. Smith's Happiness course in order to find out exactly what tools I truly needed to be emotionally happy. He referenced "What Happy People Know" by Dan Baker, Ph. D and Cameron Stauth. I read this book back when it was published in 2004. I am a big follower of people who like to write about ha I did enjoy this book. I found it quite helpful on many levels. But I only wish there were more techniques and things we can personally do to make our journey a happier one. I felt like I needed to take Mr. Smith's Happiness course in order to find out exactly what tools I truly needed to be emotionally happy. He referenced "What Happy People Know" by Dan Baker, Ph. D and Cameron Stauth. I read this book back when it was published in 2004. I am a big follower of people who like to write about happiness. I like to re-read these books because it is always good to be reminded of things we tend to forget. I hope you give this book a try. It does take a hot minute to get into it. And it is not a strictly "text book" sort of book. The author gives quite a lot of personal examples which is really helpful when you are trying to apply a technique to you own life.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Mal

    I won this book through a Goodreads giveaway and I am extremely thankful that I did. I have been struggling with the titled theme for quite some time now. This book is very easy to read. It presents the information in a very relatable yet informative way. It its one part anecdotal and one part informational (think text book or how to guide). The author provides a lot of practical knowledge. After reading this book I feel that I have the necessary tools and knowledge to be and stay happy and purp I won this book through a Goodreads giveaway and I am extremely thankful that I did. I have been struggling with the titled theme for quite some time now. This book is very easy to read. It presents the information in a very relatable yet informative way. It its one part anecdotal and one part informational (think text book or how to guide). The author provides a lot of practical knowledge. After reading this book I feel that I have the necessary tools and knowledge to be and stay happy and purposeful. I would recommend it to anyone who is searching for purpose and happiness in life

  18. 4 out of 5

    Amanda

    Douglas A Smith delivers such an intimate and honest view of his journey to understanding and striving towards happiness. His book provides a blend of his story with academic research. Well studied and well written, he frequently reminds his readers that he has yet to figure it all out, but continually works to build more happiness in his life. It is this honesty and vulnerability that make this read so enjoyable.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Kelly Killpack

    I am one of Doug's students from DePauw ( I took his winter term class in 2011) and it is so wonderful to see his words and lessons inspiring others. His voice in the book is so true to the way he teaches in the classroom. Doug has an amazing story while also acknowledging the difficulty of applying these practices to life, even his own. I feel very lucky to know Doug and to be able to now always be able to come back to his lessons through this book. I am one of Doug's students from DePauw ( I took his winter term class in 2011) and it is so wonderful to see his words and lessons inspiring others. His voice in the book is so true to the way he teaches in the classroom. Doug has an amazing story while also acknowledging the difficulty of applying these practices to life, even his own. I feel very lucky to know Doug and to be able to now always be able to come back to his lessons through this book.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Joy H.

    Added 1/31/14. See the Amazon page at: http://www.amazon.com/Happiness-Art-L... ("Look inside" the book.) See the author's website at: http://www.whitepinemountain.com/ http://whitepinemountain.com/new-book... http://whitepinemountain.com/who-i-am... Added 1/31/14. See the Amazon page at: http://www.amazon.com/Happiness-Art-L... ("Look inside" the book.) See the author's website at: http://www.whitepinemountain.com/ http://whitepinemountain.com/new-book... http://whitepinemountain.com/who-i-am...

  21. 4 out of 5

    Tracy

    This book is very helpful in handling life's ups and downs. It gives you the skills necessary to lead a happier more fulfilling life. It is written in a way that sort of mixes a story with a text book. I liked the writing style and the book. I learned several new strategies for dealing with life. Overall great book! :) This book is very helpful in handling life's ups and downs. It gives you the skills necessary to lead a happier more fulfilling life. It is written in a way that sort of mixes a story with a text book. I liked the writing style and the book. I learned several new strategies for dealing with life. Overall great book! :)

  22. 5 out of 5

    Sue Vanwassenhove

    Although none of what this down-to-earth guy, cancer survivor in Columbus OH has to say is anything new, his story and presentation are poignant and timely reminders. I read this on my Kindle, but intend to buy a hard copy just to highlight, write notes in margins, dog ear some pages and keep as a handy reference and share with others. Thanks to Don Benson for recommending this terrific book.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Mitzi

    I really enjoyed this book - Smith looks at the concept of happiness from a heartfelt, common sense point of view. I didn't find anything earth shattering in this book, instead if felt like a much needed reminder of things I already knew. Well worth a read! I really enjoyed this book - Smith looks at the concept of happiness from a heartfelt, common sense point of view. I didn't find anything earth shattering in this book, instead if felt like a much needed reminder of things I already knew. Well worth a read!

  24. 4 out of 5

    Claudyfamily1

    I thought this was an excellent book with personal stories and practical illustrations. I think Douglas Smith was able to break down principles I know, but bring greater understanding and the challenge to Do what you know. It is a quick read, and I would like to own it.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Miriam Scudder

    Very good. I would recommend it. We are each in control of our own happiness. If you aren't happy, you may discover why. "We can become victims, we can survive, we can recover or we can thrive." Very good. I would recommend it. We are each in control of our own happiness. If you aren't happy, you may discover why. "We can become victims, we can survive, we can recover or we can thrive."

  26. 4 out of 5

    Corinne Rodrigues

    This is definitely the kind of book I like to read – writing that comes from the author’s experience, which he then turns into a learning/teaching opportunity for others. Read more: http://from7eight.com/happiness-the-a... This is definitely the kind of book I like to read – writing that comes from the author’s experience, which he then turns into a learning/teaching opportunity for others. Read more: http://from7eight.com/happiness-the-a...

  27. 5 out of 5

    Mary

    This was an enjoyable read. A former CEO gives the outline of a class he teaches in college about happiness. My only complaint is that there were so many suggestions about living an optimistic life that not many of them stuck! :)

  28. 4 out of 5

    Stultuscaudex

    To get the full effect, you should definitely go to one of his classes!

  29. 5 out of 5

    Susan Walker

    This is a good book for people to rediscover happiness. It is written in the first person and feels like a conversation rather than a how to book.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Marianna

    Really more a 2.5. Pretty basic look at what it means to be and live happy. Definitely good things to be reminded of. Author was a bit repetitive.

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