Bestselling author, podcaster, and speaker on happiness and good habits

#1 New York Times best-selling author Gretchen Rubin recommends 3 books for more happiness and meaning

Gretchen Rubin is one of today’s most influential and thought-provoking observers of happiness and human nature. She’s known for her ability to distill and convey complex ideas with humor and clarity, in a way that’s accessible to a wide audience.  She’s been interviewed by Oprah, eaten dinner with Daniel Kahneman, walked arm-in-arm with the Dalai Lama, had her work written up in a medical journal, and been an answer on the game show Jeopardy!

Gretchen is the author of many books, including the blockbuster New York Times bestsellers The Four TendenciesBetter Than Before, and The Happiness ProjectShe has an enormous readership, both in print and online, and her books have sold almost three million copies worldwide, in more than thirty languages. (The Happiness Project spent two years on the bestseller list.)

On her top-ranking, award-winning podcast “Happier with Gretchen Rubin,” she discusses happiness and good habits with her sister Elizabeth Craft.

You can find Gretchen at her site gretchenrubin.com on Facebook @gretchenrubin and on Twitter @gretchenrubin.

gretchen rubin headshot

Why Gretchen loves reading

Gretchen:  

“I love to read. Reading is my work and my play, my cubicle and my treehouse. It’s the way I understand myself, other people, and the world.

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Gretchen’s 3 picks for more happiness in your life

Man’s Search for Meaning

by Viktor Frankl

Gretchen:

It’s easy to get weighed down by the tasks and concerns of everyday life, and to lose sight of transcendent values. Frankl’s account reminds us of what’s most important. 

Book description*:

Psychiatrist Viktor Frankl’s memoir has riveted generations of readers with its descriptions of life in Nazi death camps and its lessons for spiritual survival.

Based on his own experience and the experiences of others he treated later in his practice, Frankl argues that we cannot avoid suffering but we can choose how to cope with it, find meaning in it, and move forward with renewed purpose. 

At the time of Frankl’s death in 1997, Man’s Search for Meaning had sold more than 10 million copies in twenty-four languages. A 1991 reader survey for the Library of Congress that asked readers to name a “book that made a difference in your life” found Man’s Search for Meaning among the ten most influential books in America.

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Why We Get Fat

by Gary Taubes

Gretchen: This book transformed the way I eat every day, and the way I think about food. It’s one of the books that I most often give as a gift.  Book description*: What’s making us fat? And how can we change? Building upon his critical work in Good Calories, Bad Calories and presenting fresh evidence for his claim, bestselling author Gary Taubes revisits these urgent questions.  Taubes reveals the bad nutritional science of the last century—none more damaging or misguided than the “calories-in, calories-out” model of why we get fat—and the good science that has been ignored.

Heartburn

by Nora Ephron

Gretchen: Short, hilarious, thought-provoking, and based on a true story. Nora Ephron at her best.  Book description*: Is it possible to write a sidesplitting novel about the breakup of the perfect marriage? If the writer is Nora Ephron, the answer is a resounding yes. For in this inspired confection of adultery, revenge, group therapy, and pot roast, the creator of Sleepless in Seattle reminds us that comedy depends on anguish as surely as a proper gravy depends on flour and butter.

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