My favorite thing to do, by a long shot, is to read books -- and then to try to persuade other people to read the books I love. So I get great joy from my monthly book club, where I recommend three books: one book about happiness, habits, or human nature; one outstanding work of children's literature; and one eccentric pick.
People often ask me for various lists, so here's a list of some of my favorite books about happiness, habits, and human nature.
As you'll see, there's a big range here. Non-fiction, fiction, essays, journals, serious, light...but in one way or another, these books shed light on some big questions:
- How do we build a happy life?
- What do we owe other people?
- How can we change?
- What habits will tend to make us happier?
- How do we learn about ourselves?
Oh, how I love all these books.
15 Books About Happiness, Habits, and Human Nature
1. The Conquest of Happiness by Bertrand Russell
2. Internal Time: Chronotypes, Social Jet Lag, and Why You're So Tired by Till Roenneberg
3. Here Is New York by E. B. White
4. The Journal of Jules Renard
5. Walden by Henry David Thoreau
6. Pack of Two: the Intricate Bonds Between People and Dogs by Caroline Knapp
7. The Diary of Anne Frank
8. The Seven Storey Mountain by Thomas Merton
9. Loneliness: Human Nature and the Need for Social Connection by John Cacioppo and William Patrick.
10. How Proust Can Change Your Life by Alain de Botton
11. Gilead by Marilynne Robinson
12. Why We Get Fat: And What to Do About It by Gary Taubes
13. Daily Rituals: How Artists Work by Mason Currey
14. Man's Search for Meaning by Viktor Fankl
15. What I Talk About When I Talk About Running by Haruki Murakami
Have you read any of these? What books would you add?
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