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The Obstacle is the Way : How to be More Resilient in the Midst of Chaos

How to be more resilient in the midst of chaos

During my senior year in high school, my French teacher asked us to make an oral presentation on a topic of our choice. My friends talked about celebrities, current events or spontaneous combustion(!) while I chose to present the philosophy of Friedrich Nietzsche. I always were kind of a weirdo. Back when I was a teenager, I would get my hands on anything related to philosophy. One day, I found a small, intriguing book by a philosopher called Epictetus. The book was so good that I devoured it in an evening. This is how I was first introduced to stoicism, a school of philosophy founded in ancient Greece. Fast forward more than a decade later and I am still fascinated by stoicism, a philosophy of virtue and wisdom teaching us how to be more resilient in the face of pain and hardships and become the master of our thoughts and emotions. Many articles I have published on Productive Happiness are inspired by the teachings of the stoics. Recently, it seems that many influencers have become interested in stocism, even more so now that blogger and […]

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A Beginner’s Guide to Getting things Done

A Beginner's Guide to Getting Things Done

Back in 2014, I was undergoing a major life overhaul. I had just started the Miracle Morning and was also starting my project of becoming a full-time blogger. I soon realized that, if I wanted to juggle my regular job and my side hustle, I needed to improve my productivity game. I heard of a book called Getting Things Done. The tagline of the book piqued my interest : The Art of Stress-free Productivity. That’s what I wanted! Get everything done with a zen attitude! Don’t we all want that? In today’s article, I will share a beginner’s guide to Getting Things Done, the productivity system that will allow you to get your life under control and achieve what David Allen calls “mind like water”. First, let’s start by stating what Getting Things Done (GTD) is not. It is not a quick-fix technique to boost your productivity. It is not a single tip, but a whole system, a methodology to encompass everything you need and want to do in your life, both professionally and personally. The GTD system is not […]

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Man’s Search for Meaning – A Summary

Man's search for meaning summary

I don’t know if you believe in synchronicity, but I certainly do, especially regarding books. Sometimes, I’ll keep seeing a book everywhere. EVERYWHERE. When that happens, I know that I have to have it. That’s what happened with Man’s Search for Meaning by Viktor E. Frankl. Recently, I wrote an article about a book called The Happiness Makeover. The author mentions Man’s Search for Meaning more than once in her book, and it has been the millionth time I’ve seen this book mentioned by happiness authors. I felt that I had seen enough signs and I decided to splurge and buy the book on Amazon. And it blew my mind. Viktor Frankl was a Jewish psychiatrist from Vienna. During WWII, Frankl and his family have been taken away from their lives and imprisoned in Nazi death camps. Frankl wrote a memoir from his time in the concentration camps, which constitutes the first half of the book. He describes life in the camps, how the prisoners were treated, but most of all, he described the psychology of the prisoners and how hope for a […]

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The Happiness Makeover, review of a short, empowering book

Last year, I was feeling a bit down in the dumps. My life seemed a bit out of alignment with what I truly wanted for myself, my career and my relationships felt unsatisfying and I was feeling depressed. I was having a happiness slump. One day, I was taking my usual afternoon walk and came across a second-hand bookstore. Something inside me whispered that I should go in. I did and, while perusing the shelves, I stumbled upon a mysterious book called the The Happiness Makeover, how to teach yourself to be happy and enjoy every day by M.J. Ryan. It had to come home with me. I quickly dove in, and, after a few chapters, I knew I had to share this awesome find with my readers. Here’s a short review of this little gem. Structure The book is divided into 53 short chapters, each one laying out an actionable advice on the topic of happiness. M.J. Ryan talks about neuroscience, money, optimism, relationships, purpose, each chapters a few pages long and loaded with insights and wisdom. The book […]

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Essentialism : review of a new way of life

Today’s review has been on my to-do list for a long time. I think that I wanted to make sure I had the right words to share with you how much Essentialism : The Disciplined Pursuit of Less by Greg McKeown had an impact on my life. It has a special place in my list of ten books that have changed my life for the better! At first, I wanted to write an extensive summary of the book and prepared detailed notes and quotations. The more I thought about it, the less it made sense. In the spirit of Essentialism, I had to write a minimalist review. Something simple and to the point, something that would inspire you to buy the book and read it yourself. I hope I will give you this urge with my review. Here we go. To me, Greg McKeown’s Essentialism is more than  a simple non-fiction essay. It encompasses a philosophy, a way of life. Here is, in McKeown’s words, what is an Essentialist : “The way of the Essentialist means living by design, not by […]

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Quarter planning – 5 steps to achieve more goals

Back in 2015, I had the habit of setting goals in January, resolutions of sorts. That year, I set more than 40 goals and was very committed, in the first two months… When my drive gradually dissolved, I started to cross off items from my list. I started making excuses. At the end of the year, I had accomplished 15 of those 40+ goals. Not a bad result, but not even close. I realized that I had two problems in my planning method. First, I set too many goals to be able to work on all of them. Second, most of the goals I set in January were no longer relevant in April. This is when I learned about quarter planning. Shortly before I read Michael Hyatt’s book Living Forward, I heard him talk about quarter planning on his podcast, This is your life. I was very intrigued. Right after I’ve listened to that episode, I was introduced by Jeff Sanders’ podcast to The 12 Week Year book by Brian P Moran. After reading his book, I created the planning […]

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How Gretchen Rubin became my virtual mentor

A few years ago, I began my quest for personal growth by reading The Miracle Morning by Hal Elrod. A world of new possibilities opened for me as I discovered self-help books. One day, I was perusing the library section of my favorite thrift store when I found a little blue book written by Gretchen Rubin. The Title, The Happiness Project, immediately grabbed my attention. I ran home with the book and started reading it right away. During the summer of 2014, I went to the beach with my in-laws. What I love most about the beach are the long hours without a thing to do, nothing else than read. I read most of The Happiness project during that week at the beach. It was the first memoir I’ve ever read, a literary style I did not know existed. I was blown away by Gretchen Rubin’s style. We seemed to have in common that practical sense of creating experiences to enhance our happiness. She seemed a lot like me, very type-A, driven and disciplined. I really liked her. Soon after […]

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Living Forward, a summary of life planning

Last year, I felt unsettled. One day, I came back from work with this feeling in my chest that my days were useless. I had the feeling that I was living my life without direction, just going through the motions of my everyday life, without a clear purpose. I would get up, rush through my morning routine, go to work, come back and read Facebook, then go to sleep. I was not achieving anything major during the day. I was drifting. At the same time, Michael Hyatt and Daniel Harkavy released a book called Living Forward – A proven plan to stop drifting and get the life you want. Needless to say, the book caught my attention. I am a huge fan of Michael Hyatt and I was convinced that his book would be very powerful and inspiring. I was not mistaken. I rented an Airbnb to spend 3 days, in silence, to try and find a meaning to this drift I was experiencing and bring back purpose into my life. I read the book in a very short time […]

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