50 Ways to Yay!, by Alexi Panos
I’m currently in a phase of life where I am interested in reading about making changes to life. Mostly, this interest has skewed towards productivity and minimalism, but I thought 50 Ways to Yay! sounded like an interesting way to add in more happy to the mix.
Alexi Panos is an internet personality. Her content focuses on creating an “epic life,” which, of course, is the focus of this book. The book is divided into 50 chapters, each one preceded by a pull quote from the section and concluded with a reflection. Some of the chapters have “missions” or exercises; some do not.
Having read in this genre before, I found most of the advice to be regurgitated from every blog, book, and talking head on this subject: define your own success, master your mornings, don’t put things off, unplug occasionally, etc. Still, I found the short chapters could be a good reminder of those rather obvious things, and the missions and reflections often triggered action on my part. Here’s an example of two missions I liked:
[Chapter 8] What are three things you’ve been wanting to do, say, and be that you’ve been putting off for the “perfect” time?
[Chapter 12] Today, when you encounter an “old” situation, show up with a newfound curiosity. If it’s a person you’re used to seeing all the time, ask new questions and dig a little deeper. Try to find out one thing about that person that you never knew before. If it’s your surroundings, try to notice something that you’ve never noticed before; get curious about the world around you.
While generally the writing and message flowed without bumps, I did disagree with some of her points, like this one from chapter 3: “Everything in your life, good and bad, was manifested by you.” This kind of logic, most (in)famously promoted by the likes of The Secret, fails to take into account geographic, socioeconomic, and genetic conditions often beyond the control of positive thinking. But overall, I enjoyed dipping in and out of these short chapters and being reminded of their messages. I’d recommend this to anyone looking to inject a little more intention into their everyday.