Earlier in the week I set myself a challenge to read a book from each category of the 2018 British Book Awards. With every book I am reading from the challenge I am also reviewing. Read about the challenge here.
Happy. Finding joy in every day and letting go of perfect
By Fearne Cotton
Fearne Cotton understands how important happiness is, and why we need to seek it out each and every day. Determined to help break the taboo around mental health, here – for the first time – she opens up honestly about her own battle with depression, and the little things that help keep it at bay so she can continue trekking towards the good stuff.
First of all, for anyone who doesn’t know who Fearne Cotton is have a gander on her website here. Fearne is a seasoned TV and Radio presenter, she has designed several seasons of a home wear range for very.co.uk, she has released cook books, works closely with lots of charities and basically does a tonne of really awesome things. She might be a celebrity but she is also a human being and at one point in her life battled with depression, which lead her to write this book.
I absolutely LOVED this book. From the beautifully designed cover, to the amazing illustrations inside, to the insightful interviews with Fearne’s closest friends and family to the useful activities and practical exercises. The only thing I negative I have to say is I wish I read this about 6 months ago when I was going through a “dark place” of my own. Unfortunatly I was being bullied in my previous job which led to mild depression and anxiety. Even after I left this job I couldn’t seem to climb out of this dark place that my mind had found and for about 8-10 months I really struggled. During this hard time in my life I read quite a few self help, mindfulness, positivity books and a lot were really helpful. I do wish I read this at my low point however even though I feel a lot better now (which is great) this book was still so useful, practical and helpful to me.
I did think this book would be a bit pretentious and look I’m a celebrity I know what I’m talking about listen to me. However I was very wrong, I felt like Fearne was extremely relatable, her writing style was modern and I didn’t feel like she was preaching, just sharing her knowledge and experience to help others, her honesty throughout the book was commendable. Fearne doesn’t bang on and on about her depression she just gives you an overview of how she felt when she was in her own “dark place” and how she over come this. Before reading this I didn’t really know much about her, I assumed she was just this wacky TV presenter with a good sense of style who loved to party. But reading this I find out she prefers to be at home with her family and snuggled up in bed with a good book. There was nothing fake about her and that’s what I really liked about it.
The book is set out into different sections for example Happy Body, Happy Mind, Happy Families. Each section has some insightful thoughts and comments from Fearne, some sections have interviews and every section is pact full of helpful activities, such as: writing down a list of positives about your day, writing down your imperfections, the smile chart. I ended up reading the whole book then going back through to do some of the exercises that I thought would benefit me most. I love that this book can be a stand alone read but also I think it will be great to use as a reference in the future, if I’m feeling down or need some tips on relaxing I could flick to pretty much any page of this book and find something useful and helpful.
Overall I really loved this book, it gave me such a positive buzz and I think it’s the kind of “self help” book you can recommend to anyone, you don’t necessarily have to be going through depression or anxiety as I think everyone in the world needs a little push to tell them how to relax, be happy and make the most of life. It’s a great feel good book and does what it says on the tin… HAPPY!
I have just seen that Fearne has written another book called CALM. This is now on my list to read as well.
Have you read Fearne Cotton’s Happy or Calm? What did you think of them? Let me know I would love to chat. Katie x