Customer Review

92 of 95 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Radical Simplicity 101, September 13, 2012
This review is from: You Can Buy Happiness (and It's Cheap): How One Woman Radically Simplified Her Life and How You Can Too (Paperback)
Browse the table of contents and you'll see a pattern emerge quickly: have less stuff, buy less things, and spend your time on money on what you truly value. If this sort of thinking and course of action interests you, this book will act as a primer for your simpler, more beautiful life.

This "biographical manifesto" of sorts is basically one woman's story of learning how to live a simpler, more gratifying life. We can see ourselves in her "before" -- and realize how much happier we might be if we learned to be more like her "after." The author's writing is gentle -- no guilt-ridden, "we're destroying the earth" doom and gloom. Global crisis notwithstanding, this is a book on personal and family transformation.

Check out the contents to get a further idea of what's inside:

Gratitude
Rethinking Normal

Part 1: The Paradox of Stuff
1. Buying Things that Will Not Make You Happy
2. The Stuff You Own Owns You

Part 2: Finding Happiness Through Simple Living
3. Changing Your Relationship With Stuff
4. The Power of Debt
5. Sell What You Can, Give the Rest Away
6. The Joy of the Small House
7. Reclaiming Work

Part 3: Buying Happiness
8. Time Is the Only Real Wealth
9. Money vs. Experiences
10. Relationships Matter, Not Things
11. The Art of Community Building
12. The Power of Tiny Pleasures

Epilogue: Love Life, Not Stuff

Fans of self-help books with an emphasis on personal stories will eat this book up. It's great as an inspiring story, and it's even more helpful as a road map for charting one's own journey to simplicity. It's not overbearing patronizing in its philosophizing, so the shame-and-cringe factor is low. Recommended for anyone who wishes to change their lives toward the simpler.

A few related books you probably would also enjoy are The Man Who Quit Money and I Walked to the Moon and Almost Everybody Waved: The Curiously Inspiring Adventures of a Free Spirit Who Changed Lives and for those with a Buddhist bent, Extraordinary Zen Masters: A Maverick, a Master of Masters, and a Wandering Poet, which profiles three zen masters who lived simply and without financial cares. All are about living life in a deep way without material possessions.
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Showing 1-2 of 2 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Jun 27, 2013 1:15:58 PM PDT
I saw the house. My thoughts were, "Wow, that look like hell to live in." But when I was a child it would have been the ultimate playhouse.

Posted on May 13, 2014 2:49:24 PM PDT
C. L. Taylor says:
The secret to all of this is, of course, for your spouse to be with you 100% on any given plan. Otherwise, you can read this book a thousand times and if you don't have a spouse or a support system who is there for you to positively encourage you, it becomes MIND over MATTER,..... and in this day and age the mind is a very weak thing, easily hurt, with a heart that is as easily broken.
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