Unfinished Business: the Self-Help Edition

It’s probably not the right time for me to read books on how to have a more balanced life, right in the middle of a house move. While I certainly need more balance in my life right now, it’s just that I can’t really pack my life’s belongings and unpack my deep thoughts and life goals in the same month.

In that spirit I decided that two books I tried in that realm weren’t probably going to make the cut and get packed with the other books. They were definitely going to find themselves other owners (I put them on the donation shelves at my workplace), and if I’m not mistaken they have found them already, as they were not on the shelf last time I passed by.

I hope that Samantha Ettus‘ book, The Pie Life has found a working woman with kids as its new owner, because the book is more for her, although Ettus claims it’s for everyone. The principle is very easy to understand: that life is very diverse and can be compared to a pie, whose slices are each very different and all taste delicious. She advocates going from one slice to the next without guilt. She is obviously a very ambitious, very driven woman and it will appeal to women who are aiming for a career equally or more successful than their partner. Although I am a full-time working mother, I didn’t resonate much with the book, probably because I have never felt any guilt about working and in France and especially in Paris this is totally normal. I believe American working mothers face a lot more criticism and feel more torn and guilty, in which case the book should help. I also didn’t resonate with the book because my career isn’t my priority at the moment.

I hope that Christine Carter‘s book, The Sweet Spot, will find an active, outspoken, laid-back, extrovert owner. I have followed Christine Carter’s newsletter and blog for a while, and I must say that I didn’t enjoy the change of format and pace. What works in short paragraphs and daily bursts of energy is too much for me when it comes in long chapters. Christine Carter introduces happiness concepts with lots of scientific backup, which is nice, but the main ideas are a bit similar to those in The Happiness Project or other that are easily found online. I must say that Christine Carter comes too much like an extrovert for my own taste, and many tips she gives are based on her personal life, which is hardly applicable to my own case. Overall still, I liked it better than the Ettus book, because she had a more laid-back approach.


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