There seems to be a lot of articles on how to find true happiness these days. Just about everywhere I look I see how to be happy headlines, often followed by an exclamation point.
Each one basically says the same thing as the others- just addressed to a different audience. I don't know about you, but frankly I haven't gained any new insights from these types of articles in a very long time.
That's why when I saw The (Unconventional) Secrets of Happy Families in an online article by Time magazine writer, Bonnie Rochman, I was skeptical to say the least.
But guess what? It actually did offer some unconventional and interesting ideas for a happier family life.
In her article, Rochman interviews Bruce Feiler, a family columnist for The New York Times and the best-selling author of The Secrets of Happy Families. Feiler is also the father of 7 year-old twin girls. In looking for a way to balance parenting, working at a demanding job, caring for his aging parents and being a good husband with the elusive goal of having a happy family. Feiler turned to some of this country's most creative minds, outside the typical sources of family psychologists and child development experts, for new perspectives and insights.
He communicated with Warren Buffet's advisors about the connection between allowances and chores. He spoke to Green Berets on building a tight-knit family unit and to members of the Harvard Negotiation Project to help learn the best approach to resolving family conflicts. By the end of his three-year research he had a list of approaches that he says help create a happier family life.
During the interview, Rochman asks Feiler what prompted him to want to write this book. His answer was straightforward and simple- he was a frustrated parent looking for a happier family life. I was incredibly frustrated as a parent. Our life was chaotic but I was especially frustrated that so much of this space