THE BOOK, THE SITE: You Can Choose To Be Happy, Tom G. Stevens
This is one of the best self-help books ever written and possibly the best. Plus it has the incredible option of reading it free on-line, taking several great tests (for your "before" and "after" scores).
The site: You Can Choose To Be Happy Site . Eventually that site may disappear but he has indicated he will repost it on his own, so you'd have to google his name.
With the on-line version of the book, the search engine on the site didn't work, so I downloaded the on-line version [338 pages], which is in PDF and used the "find" function, which takes a few extra seconds compared to a google search. You'll be able to search for what you want. Also he guides you to the specific chapters for problems you might want to read next or address separately. (The search engine wasn't working linkwise when I tried it, so I .)
I'LL BE WORKING AROUND THIS GREAT RESOURCE
This is so well done that I do not need to write on certain subjects. I'll be using pieces of it that I think should be accessed on a key topic about which I'm writing about, so you can "go deep" into understanding.
I might also develop a "lesson plan" to follow and some worksheets that are relevant.
FOR SERIOUS STUDENTS OF LIFE WHO WANT TO BE HAPPY
The book includes all that needs to be done and studied to be happy, but, of course, it'll take time. Just go through this in the grand overview, then perhaps go down to the next level for some quick benefits, but finally go through all the detail systematically and clean your life up and become very, very healthy in your living of your life. The result is priceless: happiness, that is deep and true and not conditional.
THE SUCCESS AND HAPPINESS ATTRIBUTES TEST
Test yourself before and after and see the huge difference: SHAQ. Click lower down below Tom's name and below "Success and Happiness Home Page": "Success and Happiness Attributes Questionnaire (SHAQ) to assess self on many factors " to link into it.
See below in items of special interest section, the summaries of results and what they mean and what factors cause happiness and which don't.
ITEMS OF SPECIAL INTEREST AND OVERVIEW
You might use the items below to get a great overview of the book and of life....
I'd use it as a lesson plan, to go deeper into, but first go through them without dwelling in any one area, so that you are sure to get perspective on what matters. You would be helped by taking notes on what you want to follow up on (including the page number).
Due to copyright restrictions I could not copy these for your direct use, so I refer you to the page numbers in the downloaded 2010 version of the book. I suggest that you print these pages and use them for reference, for templates perhaps for creating your personal version of some items, and for reminders in your Reminders Notebook.
Maslow's Characteristics Of Self Actualizing People - These are the characteristics of the healthiest thinking people on earth - and you might wish to develop them, if you want to be happy.... P. 16
The Choose To Be Happy Self-Development Plan - A quick summary of what to develop, which I agree wholeheartedly with! P. 33
Start Your Choose To Be Happy Self-Development Program - After reading
the book, do this. P. 288
"Helplessness" Language Converted To "Choice" Language - One of the key practices to convert oneself to a higher level of functioning, believe it or not (it is so simple to do, too!). P. 40.
Routes To Happiness (Internal Routes And External Routes - And Choice) - A great overview of the pieces to use to go down the path to happiness. Zoom in on this one to see it. P. 42
What Does Research Say About The Causes Of Happiness - A good "quicksummary", so you can also see what doesn't work (which you should of course stop doing!). P. 44
The Higher Self And Other Psychological Systems - A diagram with lots of content. Very true, very usable. P. 80
Maslow's Self-Actualization MetaValues - The big values that determine the quality of your life - absolutely necessary for true happiness, in my opinion. P. 84
My Commitment: I Choose Love, Truth, and Happiness - Loving Myself, Loving Others, And Loving All Creation (The Foundation Of My Higher Self) - THE way to live life. P. 85
Expectations Of What I Will Receive In Life - This simple diagram summarizes the source of happiness and of unhappiness, which I call The Unhappiness Gap (search the term on this site and then read it). One of the key fallacies of how we motivate ourselves lies in using Deficit Motivation, dealt with also in this site's discussions of the Option Method (and viewpoints) and L.S. Barksdale's great wisdom and exercises (find via the search engine on this site). P. 104
Key Life Skills - Cognitive, Self-Management, And Interpersonal - You might rate yourself in each of these, so you can have a focus on what you might wish to enhance your skills in! P. 141
The Difference Between Life Skills And Confidence In Life Skills - A useful
distinction, I think. P. 142
Step-By-Step Decision-Making Process - You must follow at least the steps in this list!!!! The alternative is to have lots of unsolved or inadequately solved problems (which repeat, over and over and over and over...). P. 155
Checklist Of Areas You Might Have Become Too Dependent In - Vital self-check-in. P. 160
Dealing With Manipulation By Positive And Negative Labels - Break the manipulation! P. 167
If You Are Too Confused Studying Or Trying To Learn Ideas - Do this, to become clear and more effective. P 192
Being In The Zone Of Harmonious Functioning (personal life effectiveness) - Returning to harmonious functioning (what I call a high state of resourcefulness) is vital. And here's a complete diagrammatic overview for your insight. P. 198
If You Are Too Bored Or Uninvolved In Learning Or Doing A Task - What to
do to get back into 'the zone'. P. 193
The 5 LAPDS Goal-Expectation Dimensions To Adjust Challenge - Too little
and you'll be depressed and/or bored. Too much and you'll be stressed
and anxious. Increase or decrease these ways. P 225
Some Key Factors Affecting Emotional Intensity - Coping with emotional intensity is a vital skill that will reduce stress and increase happiness. P.199
The Six Harmonious Thinking Mental Control Strategies To Rise Above Negative Emotions - These are the six that are needed. Don't waste your time looking for miraculous cures offered to make money and/or to provide results with little effort!
Activities To Help You Get Emotional Control - Valuable! Save lots of wasted time and energy. P. 205
Focus On Process Goals To Increase Calmness - Amen! P. 228
Focus On Dynamic, Growth-Oriented Goals P. 230
Major Causes And Solutions For Habitual Depression - Nails them! P. 236
Negative Cognitive Styles - These must be corrected to be happy. P. 308
Harmonious Functioning Model Of Emotions And Performance - A whopper of a diagram - and I wish I would have operated this way when I was upsetting myself in my work. P. 250 (use the rotate button at the top of the page).
From Dreams And Values To Actions - Creating The Worlds We Want (The O-PATSM System) - The overview diagram of effectively creating what you want in life. You can't leave out a step and still expect to get what you want, by some miracle... P. 272 (or see the listing box)
Example Of 6 Month Personal Objectives - This practice is a necessary part if one wants a great life. P. 274
Typical Weekly Schedule Example - Note some of the special categories in some of the hours. A standard weekly schedule, as I suggest elsewhere on this site, is a huge productivity and stress reduction tool. P. 275
The Runaway Emotions Cycle - Overcoming Panic Attacks And Other Runaway Emotions - Right on. There is no mystery to this process and no magical cures. But there are practical steps that must be taken. P. 306 (Appendix C.)
Get Control Of Anger-Producing Beliefs And Thoughts - The alternative is to have them become more intense and more habitual, controlling your life. Or you can have this vital area handled once and for all. Appendix B. P. 298
Related to the happiness (SHAQ) test and its factors:
Index Of Research Results For The Success And Happiness Attitude Questionnaire (SHAQ) - Hone in on what is meaningful to you. Simply a great clarification. P. 290
SHAQ Research Results: Overcoming Worst Fears - What to focus on first - and to resolve. P. 104