Happiness is All We Want – A book review
“Happiness is all we want”, is this not a summation of most people’s aspirations? Only thing is people fail to see this as their real and ultimate goal and end up spending an entire lifetime madly running after the means to achieve this seemingly ephemeral goal.
It is possible to get the happiness that we want in this life if we are conscious of our desire and go after it with understanding and purpose. This is what Ashutosh Mithra’s book, “Happiness is All we Want”, is about. A self-help book that is filled with interesting illustrations and anecdotes from the Author’s personal experiences keep the reader engaged as they decipher the ways and means to get the happiness they want and desire.
Happiness is All We Want – The Book
It has been some time since I read a Self Help book and that too by an Indian author. However, I was pleasantly surprised to find that I was riveted to the book as my mind absorbed page after page to finish the book in one sitting. Of course being a Self Help book one would need to go back to the book again and again. But the point is that the book makes for light reading in spite of the subject which many may view as philosophical or didactic, which it definitely is not as it provides a simple framework of ideas that can be easily put into practice.
I loved the way the book is organized into three parts, Mental Wellbeing, Physical Wellbeing, and Spiritual Wellbeing. Also, even before part-I, there is an introduction which sets the tone of the book and clearly elucidates the purpose of the book, why one should read it., and the structure of the book. The basis of the book, of course, is the mad rat race that we are all in and how we are frittering away our lives running after transient and material things which are nothing more than a mirage.
Happiness is All We Want Part-I – It is all in the Mind
The mind is one’s greatest enemy and also one’s greatest friend. A profound thought from the Bhagavad Geeta forms the basis of this part of the book. The author focuses on the Mind as the primary vehicle for the pursuit of happiness. He compares the Mind to a monkey, hopping from tree to tree, always restless, never at peace. In the modern world, we are all running after something and when we do get what we are running after, there is no sense of joy, we are busy running after our next desire. The art of basking in the moment and enjoying the simple pleasures of life seems to be a dying art.
What I liked about the book is that it suggests practical and doable actions rather than just stating issues. In this case, the Author gives valuable insights into the restless working of the mind and suggestions on how to gradually control the mind and harness its infinite energies to a positive effect.
Happiness is All We Want Part-II – A Healthy Mind in a Healthy Body
If Part-I focuses on the driver, which is the Mind, the second part focuses on the vehicle which is the Body. In the fast paced life of today peoples’ lifestyles and eating habits have gone for a toss. We stuff ourselves with so called, “fast” food and food that is not good for a healthy body. We work unhealthy hours and are in most cases sleep deprived. A healthy body and physical well-being are necessary for a person to forge ahead in the race of life. The horse for this race in the form of our body has to be well nourished and fit as a fiddle to emerge with flying colors. The author digs into the abysmal food habits of contemporary life and provides valuable suggestions and tips on how to have a holistic and healthy diet for a healthy body. The right food and the right exercise is what the body is desperately in need of and this is where the author points the readers too.
Happiness is All We Want Part-III – In the Spirit of Things
The third part of the book focuses on the metaphysical and spiritual aspects of life. The author makes it clear that only once the mind is calmed and the body is healthy, greater pursuits of the spiritual kind is possible. How to rise above this mundane life and experience bliss through various techniques of meditation, yoga seamlessly merged with the right thoughts and actions are the highlights of this section of the book.
Book launch photos
The best thing about the book is that it is lucid in style and talks about complex subjects in simple terms without being pedantic. It provides a holistic approach to improving one’s quality of life and experiencing the joys of pure happiness. One need not be a Yogi doing penance in a remote cave in the Himalayas to attain happiness, one can attain happiness by simple and doable adjustments of one’s lifestyle and forge ahead in the race of life with a calm and controlled mind. The value of the book lies in the fact that it is not a mere book, but actually a prescription for life that can be acted upon by every adult, whether they be homemakers, business tycoons, career women, sports persons, celebrities, politicians, simply put the book is a self-help book for everyone and anyone who wants to take charge of their life.
About the Author
Ashutosh Mishra is an MBA from XLRI Jamshedpur and a Mechanical Engineer from IIT, Delhi. He has worked with many blue chip companies in his corporate career spanning over 16 years. A taxing work schedule and hectic business travel goaded Ashutosh to look for a balance in his life and this led him to a quest for a holistic way to balance his life. His experiences and his successes resulted in him developing his own framework for a comprehensive wellness with a unique perspective. Do check out his site here.
You can order your copy of, “Happiness is All we Want”, from Amazon.
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