The Happiness of Pursuit by Chris Guillebeau
Narrator: George Newbern
Length: 7 hrs and 27 mins
Date Read: September 2014
When he set out to visit all of the planet’s countries by age thirty-five, compulsive goal seeker Chris Guillebeau never imagined that his journey’s biggest revelation would be how many people like himself exist – each pursuing a challenging quest. And, interestingly, these quests aren’t just travel-oriented. On the contrary, they’re as diverse as humanity itself. Some involve exploration; others the pursuit of athletic or artistic excellence; still others a battle against injustice or poverty or threats to the environment.
Everywhere that Chris visited he found ordinary people working toward extraordinary goals, making daily down payments on their dream. These “questers” included a suburban mom pursuing a wildly ambitious culinary project, a DJ producing the world’s largest symphony, a young widower completing the tasks his wife would never accomplish, and a teenager crossing an entire ocean alone - as well as a do-it-yourselfer tackling M.I.T.’s computer-science course, a nerd turning himself into real-life James Bond, and scores of others writing themselves into the record books.
The more Chris spoke with these strivers, the more he began to appreciate the direct link between questing and long-term happiness -- how going after something in a methodical way enriches our lives -- and he was compelled to complete a comprehensive study of the phenomenon and extract the best advice. In The Happiness of Pursuit he draws on interviews with hundreds of questers, revealing their secret motivations, their selection criteria, the role played by friends and family, their tricks for solving logistics, and the importance of documentation.
Equally fascinating is Chris’ examination of questing’s other side, including questers’ acute awareness of mortality, their struggle against monotony, and their wistful feelings once a quest has succeeded. What happens after the summit is climbed, the painting hung, the endurance record broken, the “at risk” community saved?
A book that challenges each of us to take control – to make our lives be about something while at the same time remaining clear-eyed about the commitment -- The Happiness of Pursuit will inspire readers of every age and aspiration. It’s a playbook for making your life count.
Publisher: Harmony, Random House Audio
JUST A NOTE: Read It File It is for books that I have read that I need to keep track of. The reviews will be super short (think tweet longer length) but will serve the purpose of getting the books into UBB for tracking purposes 🙂
Listened for Review (Random House Audio)
Overall Rating: 4.00
Inspiration Rating: 4.00
Story Rating: 4.00
Audio Rating: 4.00 (not part of the overall rating)
Read It File It (short review): The Happiness of Pursuit by Chris Guillebeau is one of those books that will inspire you take on a quest for your life. To pursue something you have always wanted and accept all the things that come with it. I was impressed that he tackled the highs and lows of questing. That made it all the more inspiring. It was a nice reminder that sometimes you have to give up things to get other things that will make you happy!
Narrated by: George Newbern/Length: 7 hrs and 27 mins
George did a great job with this audiobook. He really made the individual stories come alive for me and I enjoyed listening to this one.