Expanded Joy by Elizabeth Popish

Expanded Joy

52 Projects to Increase the Purpose, Passion and Playfulness in Your Life
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KIRKUS REVIEW

Debut author and educational administrator Popish offers innovative springboards, exercises, and tools for a more inspired life.

The author writes that she set out to find a book that could guide her to a passion-filled existence. Her failure to find it served as a catalyst toward success, however, as she began to pen this book. The result is a vibrant collection of strategies that can be used personally, as part of a group, or shared with family in order to set a daily tone. Within these pages, Popish offers fresh ideas about writing, practicing gratitude, and going on adventures to spice up one’s daily life and imbue one’s free time with meaning. The book starts out with practical habits that promise to lead to calmness and more fulfillment. For instance, the author begins by asserting the importance of sleep, explaining the science behind REM cycles and the regeneration that happens overnight. She then offers a list of strategies to make one’s sleep deeper and more meaningful, such as darkening a room, changing bedding or pillows, taking “cleansing breaths,” and listening to soothing music. Although these tips may seem obvious, they’re often forgotten in busy lifestyles. Next, she covers personal relationships, suggesting ways to find joy by focusing on strong social connections. Indeed, much of the book focuses on methods for creating joyful environments, such as by making inspiration boards using fabric samples, quotes, and photographs or undertaking creative collage. Popish also calls upon positive psychology concepts, pointing to data-backed studies on the importance of planned “spontaneity,” savoring experiences, and varying one’s joys to avoid “habituation” and a decline of stimulation. The book is well-crafted, freshly written, and explains its ideas in a logical, straightforward way, even when tackling complex psychology concepts. Along the way, the author covers a broad landscape of wellness strategies. She encourages solitude and social connection, planning and spontaneity, laughter and spirituality—all culminating in a dialectical approach that’s easy to follow.

A fun, successful collection of concepts, thoughts, and strategies about maintaining joy and living creatively.  

Pub Date: Nov. 10th, 2015
ISBN: 978-1-937498-82-5
Page count: 176pp
Publisher: Elevate
Program: Kirkus Indie
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