Book Review: Happier Thinking

IMG_1922 (2)Happier Thinking
by Lana Grace Riva

Goodreads ~ Amazon ~ Barnes&Noble

Changing how you think is possible. I wasn’t always so sure that was true until I experienced it myself, but I know now we don’t have to just accept unhappiness. Not always anyway. This book is my collection of tips and suggestions that have helped me achieve happier thinking. It’s sort of a gym for my mind. I’d love to tell you it was easier than the real gym but well… it’s not really. It takes time, effort, and practice but it’s absolutely well worth the rewards. (Goodreads)

Let me start out by saying that despite my 2 star review, this really wasn’t that bad of a book. It’s essentially a very short and sweet suggestion guide on thinking happier. It’s not exactly a how-to book, but it could help as a starter book to those who want — but just don’t know how — to go about changing their way of thinking.

It’s not written by a professional, which isn’t really a problem because Riva doesn’t claim to be a professional and makes it clear that she’s just another person who’s struggled with positive thinking and wants to share a few tips for others who are in similar boats. It’s a nice idea, and there were some things about it I did like, but I had some issues with the writing style.

Happier Thinking was written in a very converstational manner — which is totally fine and seemed to be what the author was going for — but it was a little too conversational for my taste. There were a lot of “er”s and “erm”s and “aargh”s scattered throughout the book, which kind of read like a Facebook post of someone who shares a lot of recipes and chain messages. And the ellipses. Ohhh, the ellipses. An unnecessary amount of them. I love ellipses as much as the next person, but I strongly feel that they should be used sparingly. Quite the opposite of commas, which were very few and far between in this book. It felt like someone was talking at me very fast with little to no breaks for breath. It was kind of exhausting to read.

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Despite its flaws, Happier Thinking did have a very good message. I wasn’t much of a fan of the examples Riva uses to get her points across, but the points themselves are worth taking to heart. I’m particularly fond of Riva’s discussion about gratitude journals. She doesn’t use this term specifically, but she does put emphasis on remembering the good at the end of the day and taking time to write about it not only to have something to look back on later, but also because practicing focusing on the good will make it easier to be more aware of good things when they happen in the future. I’ve tried keeping a gratitude journal a few times, and it really is helpful.

Riva also talks about being kind not only to other but to yourself as well. Getting rid of all those unnecessary self-directed critical attacks is extremely important to living a healthier life, and I was glad to see Riva take some time to talk about that as well.

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Overall, the message in this book was great and very important, but the writing brought the quality down quite a bit. I’m interested to see if Riva continues to write more books in the future and see how her writing style evolves. In the meantime, if you’re looking for books that can help with changing your way of thinking, I’d highly suggest picking up

I’d like to thank the author for contacting me about reviewing her book and for sending me a copy in exchange for an honest review.

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