10 Steps to Finding Your Happy Place: Book Review and Giveaway with Galen Pearl

Galen Pearls book, 10 Steps to Finding Your Happy Place (and Staying There), gives us a picture of how extraordinarily happy our lives can be. Yet in our competitive, comparative, egotistical, fast-paced world,that it’s easy to forget that we cause our own misery and our happiness remains in our own hands.

In this wise and heartfelt book, Galen integrates timeless teaching stories, inspiring quotes, words of soul-stirring wisdom, and actionable steps that will move you right into a state of happiness. 

10 Steps to Finding Your Happy Place is written with down-to-earth accessibility as Galen tracks her own deeply and personal path to happiness.

Don't miss this opportunity to learn how to uncover the ability to be happy no matter what is going on around you or in the world. 

The Contents


Step 1: Give Yourself Permission to Be Happy

Step 2: Decide if You Want to Be Right or Happy

Step 3: Give Up the Delusion of Control

Step 4: Feel Your Feelings

Step 5: Make Haste to Be Kind

Step 6: Judge Not

Step 7: Practice Compassion

Step 8: Forgive Everyone

Step 9: Develop an Attitude of Gratitude

Step 10: Be Here Now

The 11th Step: You Can Go Home Again

What You Will Learn

How to live in a state of happiness now and forever.

How spirituality is related to happiness.

How to transform your beliefs and own your feelings.

How love and happiness go hand and hand.

How you can become a generous giver in a fear-filled world.

How to move beyond right and wrong.

How to give up the delusion of control.

How to turn your pain and fear into a happiness habit.

How to give up suffering.

and much, much, more!

Some favorite bits of wisdom:

On your happy place

By happy place, I don’t mean a place of unrelenting inner sunshine. I mean a place of refuge and spiritual sustenance. Of contented fulfillment. Home.  

On Responsibility

I would go so far as to say that being happy is one of the most unselfish and socially responsible things we can do in our lives.

On Attachment to Stuff

If I were in a MasterCard commercial, I would be sitting by the creek at my cabin, watching the bugs skim the water, my dog sniffing around for chipmunks, the sun shining through the mossy, green trees. The screen would say, "Contentment: priceless."

On Present Moment Living

Whatever I am doing is sacred. Holding back and waiting for those "special times" is fantasy. Life is here in this moment. Eternity is here in this moment. Indeed, that is the only  place it is. 

On Forgiveness 

Forgiveness is a challenging practice, the hardest of the 10 Steps for many of us. It is related to Step 3, because forgiveness requires us to let go of what we are trying to control. We have to let go of how we wanted things to be in the past, or how we want things to be in the present. When we look deeper, we’ll see that the main obstacle to forgiving others is forgiving ourselves. 

For me this bit of wisdom alone is worth the price of the book!

About Galen Pearl

Galen Pearl’s stories have appeared in Chicken Soup for the Soul and A Cup of Comfort anthologies, and her popular blog, 10 Steps to Finding Your Happy Place, attracts thousands of readers every month. Recently retired from teaching law, she regularly leads retreats and workshops on developing habits to grow a joyful spirit.

A Southern girl transplanted to the Pacific Northwest, she enjoys her five kids and two grandchildren, martial arts, her cabin in the mountains, and mahjong. 

In Her Own Words

This book is not about searching. It's about finding, finding our happy place and staying there. Loving ourselves and loving each other. Paying attention to and wallowing in the glory of every moment. Taking a deep breath and experiencing the absolute perfection of, well, everything.

Purchase the Book

You can purchase 10 Steps to Finding Your Happy Place (and Staying There), by Galen Pearl on Amazon.

Generous People are Happy People

All proceeds from the sale of this book and associated engagements will be donated to Edwards Center, a nonprofit organization providing residential and vocational services to adults with developmental disabilities. 

I'm giving away two copies of Galen's book and will choose two people that tell us about their happy place in the comments below!

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • Colette September 27, 2012, 9:30 am

    My happy place is inside of me all the time, but I have to remember that it is there. I have to be mindful of every moment that comes my way, with every day that I have left in my life.

    There are specific doors that open and show me the way to my happy place. If I remember to open myself to what is behind the door, I will find it.

    When my grandson’s face lights up at the sight of me, and when he runs to greet me with a huge smile and a big hug….I have found my happy place.

    When the house is quiet and I empty my mind of mundane thoughts, and let the gratitude of being alive envelop me…I have found my happy place.

    When my husband and I laugh together at a shared memory, a shared joke, or a shared joy….I have found my happy place.

    When I am able to help my aging mom by finding a misplaced hearing aid, fixing a broken lamp, or installing sensor lights in a dark hallway….I have found my happy place.

    When I am in my exercise class, and I feel the strength in my arms and legs, and the power of my body to dance to a beat….I have found my happy place.

    When I invite my dear friends for lunch and we talk and laugh, celebrate, or even cry – as we have done for the last 30 years of friendship….I have found my happy place.

    What all of these happy places have in common is a shared experience with a person, or people, that I love – including myself when I am alone. Love is everywhere and it is the only thing in our life that endures from the moment we are born, beyond our own lifetime. Keep it close in your heart and stay open to its power. You’ll be in your happy place.

    • Galen Pearl September 27, 2012, 5:20 pm

      Colette, Tess invited me to respond to comments, and I am happy to do so! I loved your list, and share several of your favorite places, like my grandson’s smile when he sees me and enjoying a quiet house. You are right that our happy place is inside us, but there are places or events “out there” that also bring so much joy into our lives.

  • Zivana Anderson September 27, 2012, 5:52 pm

    So true our Happy Place is within us always, we have to make sure that we remember it! Thanks for the review.

    • Galen Pearl September 27, 2012, 9:18 pm

      Zivana, Ah, yes, remembering it! I found in my own life that creating habits of joy make our happy place our default homepage. That makes remembering much easier.

  • Chris Akins September 27, 2012, 7:55 pm


    I truly love your blog, and have done for a couple of years, now. And this post is one of the reasons why. Happiness is a complex thing. To me, the core to happiness is meaning. But that is because I think that life is a search for meaning and purpose. All of the other elements mentioned are certainly important to finding happiness, but in my humble opinion none of them can truly exist without meaning and purpose.

    Great food for thought. Thanks!


    • Galen Pearl September 27, 2012, 9:16 pm

      Chris, The Dalai Lama would agree with you. He said that the purpose of life is to be happy. Great minds thinking alike!

  • Lorie September 27, 2012, 8:22 pm

    Thanks for this review. I’m going to get that book because it sounds really great.

    • Galen Pearl September 27, 2012, 9:18 pm

      Thanks, Lorie, I hope you like it!

  • Vidya Sury September 28, 2012, 3:57 am

    I am loving the book very much, Tess and Galen.

    I have many happy places – and can easily generalize by saying that my happy places are wherever I am happy, which seems to be almost everywhere, because “happy” has a constant place in my mind.


    • Galen Pearl September 28, 2012, 4:43 pm

      Thanks, Vidya. I know you have many happy places because you write about them so often!

  • Betsy/Zen Mama September 28, 2012, 2:37 pm

    I just received your book and am getting started this weekend! I love that you are donating to the Edward’s center, too. How very generous! I’ll let you know how I like it soon!

    • Galen Pearl September 28, 2012, 4:44 pm

      Betsy, I look forward to hearing your views. Thanks!

  • Cathy | Treatment Talk September 28, 2012, 6:13 pm

    Looking forward to reading your book, Galen. Love your Attachment to Stuff paragraph and this line – The screen would say, “Contentment: priceless.”

    Thank you for the reminder – my happy place is inside. Best of luck with your book.

    • Galen Pearl October 1, 2012, 2:08 pm

      Thanks, Cathy! I hope you like it.

  • Brian September 30, 2012, 10:39 am

    Thanks for giving us an overview of the book. I think I’m gonna buy it pretty soon. How much is it? This will surely guide me to the path of happiness. Hopefully, it will.


    • Galen Pearl October 1, 2012, 2:10 pm

      Brian, Thanks for your interest in the book! I hope you will enjoy it. Suggested retail price for the paperback is $16.99.

  • Pamela October 1, 2012, 3:34 pm

    My happy place should be inside me all of the time but sometimes I need an external shove. The beach or any place beautiful near water soothes me and helps me to find my “happy.” Can’t wait to read this book!

  • Victoria October 2, 2012, 4:41 am

    Tess, I just discovered your blog through an archived post on Zen Habits and I’m so glad I did. I will be a frequent reader. I would love to be entered for a chance to win a copy of Ten Steps to Finding You Happy Place. It sounds like just the reading material I need. I am on of those people who is always going to be happy when . . . I lose weight, get healthier, etc., etc. etc. I’m working on it but I can’t say I have really found my Happy Place. Galen how nice that you are responding to the post, I want to check out your blog.

  • G Angela October 3, 2012, 1:02 am

    Congratulations Galen, Thanks for the overview of the book, its brilliant work, loved the way you have presented, and hope to read it, thanks for sharing – I too believe happy places are so much within us ! thanks again !!

  • Tanya October 4, 2012, 3:57 pm

    Hi Galen:

    For me my happy place is the blank page. The openness I bring to that emptiness as I pick up my pen to write. Knowing that the emptiness is always filled only to be emptied again with the manuscript of days,moments and pages that stand before us.

    I would love a copy of your book. I am writing a book about Getting Unstuck.

    Thanks for the great work you do, Tanya <3

  • Pati October 4, 2012, 7:41 pm

    My happy place? Being at my place of peace . . . and thinking about it when I’m not there physically. Happy to all. p

Next Post:

Previous Post: