A remarkable book that will both guide and inspire, The Happiness of Pursuit reveals how anyone can bring meaning into their life by undertaking a quest.
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.
"The incredible quests Chris Guillebeau explores in The Happiness of Pursuit, including his own to visit every country, left me feeling exhausted. Of course, as a person who works from home, I limit my quests most days to taking a shower. Bottom line: these stories are inspiring--and very, very entertaining." (Joel Stein, columnist, Time magazine and author of Man Made: A Stupid Quest for Masculinity)
"The Happiness of Pursuit is smart, honest, and dangerous. Why dangerous? Because it is as practical as it is inspiring. You won't just be daydreaming about your quest - you'll be packing for it!" (Brené Brown, Ph.D., LMSW, author of the number one New York Times best seller Daring Greatly)
"It's not easy to dream big - and it's not easy to turn that dream into reality. The brilliant Chris Guillebeau provides the essential blueprint for those of us for whom the happiness of pursuit - such as Chris's successful quest to visit every country in the world - is a key part of the pursuit of happiness." (Gretchen Ruben, New York Times best-selling author of The Happiness Project)
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