10% Happier by Dan Harris-A Brief Review
“I do meditation because it makes me 10% happier.”
by Dan Harris
How many times have your emotions ruled? Did your emotions ever take over? Did you one day completely lose control over yourself?
Or how many times something as futile as “not getting enough sugar in the coffee for breakfast” has turned your otherwise pleasant day into a horrible day?
If you do not feel in control of your emotions anymore and struggle to find a way out, you must read the book 10% Happier by Dan Harris.
Review of 10% Happier by Dan Harris
10% Happier by Dan Harris is a book about his own discovery of meditation and mindfulness. In his book, Dan Harris, an A.B.C. News anchor, takes us through his own journey, beginning with his addiction to the rush for adrenaline that came way back to the years when he covered the news in warzones of the Middle East to his resulting panic attack on live T.V. as an anchorperson.
In the middle of his journey, he struggled with depression and substance (cocaine and ecstasy) abuse.
The live public mental breakdown made Dan seek to consider soul-searching and the study of stress reduction and happiness. He chose to be more relaxed and start interviewing otherworldliness-themed, religious, and self-improvement masters for the news networks.
After a long line of nonsense filled discussions with some of the most exceedingly awful hypocrites he ever met, Dan came across something that appeared to address his inquiries: mindfulness.
According to Dan Harris, there is a Buddhist way of being a modern worker.
10 Buddhist Principles for the modern worker
1) Don’t be a jerk.
2) When necessary, hide the Zen.
4) The price of security is insecurity, until it’s not useful.
5) Equanimity (moderation/balance) is not the enemy of creativity.
6) Don’t force it.
7) Humility prevents humiliation.
8) Go easy with the internal cattle prod (don’t beat yourself up).
9) Non-attachment to results.
10) Ask, “What matters most?”
According to Buddhist Principles, our brain is programmed for three responses to everything we experience in our daily life.
3 responses to everything we experience in life
- We like or accept it, like a cool summer breeze on a beautiful sunny morning.
- We dislike or reject it, like mosquitoes humming in your ears during a peaceful night sleep
- We zone out. Have you ever read the access terms and conditions while surfing the internet? Yeah, right.
Mindfulness offers us a fourth option: we begin to see and experience things without judgment. Mindfulness teaches you to handle everything surrounding you and manage your impulses that react to those things and events. And what helps you to develop this essential life skill? Meditation.
Dan Harris discusses the four-step process to deal with unpleasant circumstances and emotions throughout everyday life, which he calls the R.A.I.N. Technique.
The four steps of the R.A.I.N. Technique for meditation
1. Recognize: Get in touch with and understand your feelings.
2. Allow: Accept the pain
3. Investigate: How does the situation impact you?
4. Non-identification: Realize that the feelings you have right now do not identify you as a person.
One of Dan’s challenges was to ask himself if he would lose his edge and become a weakling if he practices meditation and gets aware of things. All things considered, if your personality and ego is your drive to strive for greater achievements, won’t you lose your edge if you let go of it?
Dan discovered that he didn’t necessarily need to pump his ego, to be competitive, and to live on the edge to be happy. As meditation lets you see the true face of the world, the things like there are, competition and adrenaline lose their appeal. As meditation made Dan realize, being calm and moderated makes you more productive than when you are stressed and under pressure.
Summary of 10% Happier by Dan Harris
10% Happier by Dan Harris is the #1 New York Times Bestseller, a brilliant book that gives a very clear approach towards meditation and its benefits.
Finally a genuine attempt to strip the practice down to its fundamentals.
It’s the ideal reading to convert the remaining skeptics into meditation enthusiasts.