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How to Be Happy, Dammit: A Cynic's Guide to Spiritual Happiness [Kindle Edition]

Karen Salmansohn
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (93 customer reviews)

Print List Price: $14.99
Kindle Price: $12.76
You Save: $2.23 (15%)
Sold by: Random House LLC

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Book Description

Guaranteed to perk up even the most cynical spirit, HOW TO BE HAPPY, DAMMIT is the first and only self-help book that merges psychology, biology, eastern and western philosophies, quantum physics, and the Zen of Bazooka Joe. Think love and happiness have passed you by? Think no schmaltzy book can help you capture the life-joy you're looking for? This book is different, promises author Karen Salmansohn. Peek within its colorful, uniquely designed pages, and you really will find pearls of wisdom to help you discover more satisfaction every day. And you'll find no saccharine sweetness here. This book tells it like it is, exploring the ups and downs of life in a straightforward, thought-provoking, and humorous way. HOW TO BE HAPPY, DAMMIT is the self-help book for people who don't buy self-help books. It may not change your life (unless you let it), but it will certainly brighten your day, even if you are a die-hard cynic. • Includes 44 life lessons that will save you years of time, effort, and navel-gazing.• Inspiring, fanciful graphics and illustrations throughout.• Karen Salmansohn's book How to Make Your Man Behave in 21 Days or Less Using the Secrets of Professional Dog Trainers has sold over 450,000 copies.

From the Trade Paperback edition.

Editorial Reviews


“Life Lesson #21: You must remember: You are here now . . . no, no, now . . . NO, NOW! You are a human being and not a human was or a human will be. So you try to spend more time being present—and less time being busy. Though, granted, things have gotten a heck more hectic since you were born. You now even have an answering machine. (You now even have people to avoid on this answering machine.) You also know that sometimes you can get so outrageously busy that you could pass by a troll standing on the street corner waving a million bucks at you . . . and you might not even notice. Meaning . . . Life Lesson #22: It doesn't matter how fast you get there if you're heading in the wrong direction.” —From HOW TO BE HAPPY, DAMMIT"Offers tasty mood food. . . .a fascinating read." —The Toronto Star Week

From the Trade Paperback edition.

About the Author

New Yorker and 'tween expert KAREN SALMANSOHN is the best-selling author of lots of books for adults including How to Be Happy, Dammit! (Ten Speed Press).

Product Details

  • File Size: 8974 KB
  • Print Length: 236 pages
  • Publisher: Celestial Arts (June 20, 2011)
  • Sold by: Random House LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B004V44C46
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #429,922 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
4.2 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
36 of 39 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A great gift book March 1, 2003
A friend gave me this book for Christmas, recognizing my innate cynicism, especially relating to the self-improvement, New Age, traditional coaching world. And ...I liked it!
Author Salmonsohn presents some basic truths that we've all heard before. ("Relax." "Let go.") But she presents these sayings in a context of sophisticated graphics and down-to-earth realism. I especially like her warning, which I paraphrase as, "Don't seek career advice from people who don't have careers, or relationship advice from people who don't have relationships." It's not completely accurate: some people can "teach" better than they can "do." But it's worth considering.
And her warning that every year has a "winter phase" is right on.
Like most readers, I'm absorbing Salmonsohn's words after reading dozens of self-help books, so none of these ideas are really new. I'm wondering if this book would really melt the heart of a cynic or someone who is truly resistant to change -- or if they'd respond like an atheist who is urged to try a contemporary hip "new" religious service.
My hunch is that this book makes a great gift and recipients, like me, will appreciate the sender's thought and intention, regardless of the book's actual content. It's nice when someone says, "I know you're a cynic but I like you anyway." Hmm...that's a sentiment right out of the book!
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25 of 27 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars It's good dammit! May 25, 2002
I found it at a local bookstore and skimmed through it. Flipping through the pages, though the nice graphics and typefaces caught my attention, the text itself didn't make much sense. I picked up the book anyways because I really am a cynic looking for spiritual happiness. When I finally got around to reading it, I discovered why flipping through the book didn't make much sense. This is not a coffee table book. It must be read from beginning to end, otherwise it won't make much sense. It's a quick read, it only took me an hour or so and I'm a slow reader. It's very catchy, witty, to the point, and perfect for cynics alike. I bought the book for a couple of friends and they really liked it as well. I'm not exactly happier, but it did give me a better perspective on life as a whole. If you're skeptical, pick it up anyways. It's inexpensive, a quick read, entertaining even if you don't like the entire book, and you really have nothing to lose. If it doesn't jive you well, give it to a friend.
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27 of 30 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars MY LIFESAVER July 24, 2002
By Melissa
I can't say enough about how much I love this book! I came across it in a bookstore when I was grieving the unexpected loss of a loved one in addition to a series of smaller tragedies. I was intrigued by the title, as I was extremely cynical and had no interest in wimpy "the world is a wonderful place" type self-help books. This book hit the spot! Karen Salmansohn speaks in a language that I completely relate to - very catchy, but with logical explanations for the information she provides. The bright pictures and catchy analogies made it very easy and pleasant to read. In some places the photos spoke almost as loudly as the words. I related so well to Ms. Salmansohn's style that I have since bought three of her other books and have not been disappointed. She is one of those gifted writers whose ability to express herself in so many new and fresh ways just blows me away! This book has literally been my lifeline for several months now, and I intend to buy copies for all my friends. I highly recommend this book for anyone who needs a pick-me-up, or a hopeful new perspective.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Triple Play for Positive Pessimism -- Happy 2003 February 1, 2003
By A Customer
Not being an optimist by nature or upbringing, my life is all about the struggle between negativity and positivity -- so I was pleased to discover Karen Salmansohn's 'Cynic's Guide to Spiritual Happiness.' It is a truly wonderful book. Right now, facing 2003, I rely on my 3 favorite books to keep me sane. The other 2 are 'Stop Smiling, Start Kvetching' and 'The Positive Power of Negative Thinking' -- all 3 help me to harness the positive energy of negativity. These 3 books make up my personal triple play for dealing constructively with anxiety, worry, irritation, and cynicism/pessimism. So my new year's resolution is to make the most of who I am and how I deal with the world around me. And Karen Salmansohn is a great author to have on your team -- she has new books coming out this year, and I'd keep an eye out for them too.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars This book will make you smile April 16, 2002
I think that this book helps to give hope and reminds us to stop feeling sorry for ourselves all the time. While the other reviewers did not like the book at all, I completely disagree with the reasoning. This is basically a 'coffee-table' book. It has glossy pictures with simple statements about life's truths and the reality of being alive. Things aren't always great, but if you give up on life then you might as well go live in a cave somwhere. It contains positive thoughts and reminders of the fact that we don't always have to feel like victims. Some of the statements are pretty obvious and occasionally cheesy- but why is that so bad? It made me smile for 15 minutes and reminded me that 'doo-doo happens' in life, but when it comes down to it none of our lives are REALLY that bad.
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More About the Author

Karen Salmansohn ( is a best selling author and award winning designer - with over 1 million books sold - who is passionate about empowering people to live their happiest, highest potential lives. She's known for creating a new breed of self help - for people who would never be caught dead doing self help - because she merges a range of psychological and philosophical research with humor and stylish graphics.


Some popular webinars: THE DO IT PROGRAM (Turn your diet into a do it - get tools to retrain your brain so you naturally want to eat healthier. Feel and look good - for good!) THE NEVER AGAIN PROGRAM (Say never again to toxic partners. Get tools and support to heal and move on - to find a safe-feeling, supportive relationship with someone who "gets you" and wants to keep you. Toxic love stops here. Happy relationships start now!)

Karen's been a featured happiness expert on The Today Show, The View, CNN, Fox News, Bill Maher's show - and is also a columnist for Oprah, Psychology Today, CNN, MSN, Yahoo, AOL, Match, Huffingtonpost - and then some. She's been raved about in such media entities as: The N.Y. Times, Business Week, Chicago Tribune, L.A. Times, Philadelphia Inquirer, Time Magazine, Marie Claire, Fast Company, InStyle, Self, ELLE, New Yorker, etc She's also an in demand keynote speaker on how to increase happiness, creativity, productivity, stick-to-itiveness, and bouncing back from hard times. She gave a TEDx talk on the topic of "Fun Is A High Performance Fuel."

Karen's also the founder of - a highly popular inspirational site! She calls her site notsalmon - because everyone's always mispronouncing her last name as Salmon - saying Karen SALMON-sohn instead of SALMAN-sohn. So she's always saying NOT-SALMON. She figured it was easier for people to find her on the internet if her site were simply

She's also known for her viral "Inspirational Flashcard" posters - which have attracted about 350,000 fans on Facebook! She's a big believer that a "spoonful of eye candy helps the self-help medicine go down" - thereby most of her books include playful and kinetic design, which she creative directs. (Her Bounce Back Book even has a symbolic snazzy red rubber cover!)

Some quirky insider info: Karen's shared man-taming tips with Madonna. She's swapped book writing tips with Goldie Hawn, Deepak Chopra and Peter Guber. She's had her novel optioned by Marissa Tomei and Miramax. She's enjoyed seeing her work featured by Julian Lennon and Eminem - without her ever sending it them! Plus Jon Stewart has read and loved her writing - and specifically told her how much he loves her humor in her writing. He even committed to saying so in an official blurb: "Karen Salmansohn has the spirit and sass of a stand up comic." This makes Karen one of the few (and most likely ONLY!) inspirational authors with Jon-Stewart-approved humor!

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