Hugh Hewitt wrote his legacy book, “The Happiest Life,” to bless his children and their children with wisdom for discovering genuine happiness.
I thoroughly enjoyed reading Hewitt’s anecdotes from his broad experience as a lawyer, teacher, broadcaster and journalist. His connections with the who’s who of Hollywood, pro sports, and politics provide rare insights for what creates genuine happiness.
Hewitt’s premise: a happy life involves seven gifts and seven givers.
Life’s 7 Gifts:
1. Encouragement – Its what you say to a friend or stranger that would “redeem a hard day or make a good one ever better.”
2. Energy – “A player of any game at any time who doesn’t bring his or her energy with them is an albatross on the team and a ticket to losing.”
3. Enthusiasm – “Enthusiasm is contagious. When the connection is made and the passion passed, the arc of life changes and it changes for the good, the very great good.”
4. Empathy – “Empathy extends from identity. Empathy doesn’t need many words or much volume. What is does is require presence.”
5. Good humor – “Happiness is a serious problem. Good humour has much to do with perspective and flows from a sense of proportion, a knowledge that whatever the circumstances, they too shall pass. We are headed to the same place at a different pace.”
6. Graciousness – “Graciousness is the art of making people feel comfortable and included, appreciated and even admired.”
7. Gratitude – “In everything (and for everyone) give thanks.”
Anyone can give these gifts, but some people are particularly well placed to offer them.
Life’s 7 Givers:
1. Parents – “The gift is time with you.”
2. Spouses – “If you want someone to come home to the same house decade after decade, then it had better be a happy house, or at least a mostly happy house, in which there is a better-than-even chance of being treated better than the concierge at the local hotel would treat them.”
3. Family members – “You are building your children’s lives far into the future by showing them how to interact with their future extended families.”
4. Friends – “Some friendships fade. Others dissolve under stress or disagreement. Still other friends just leave. Those that stick however, are irreplaceable and the sadness of a long life is losing friends.”
5. Teachers – “Who is attracted to a relatively low-paying profession with long hours and little thanks and recognition?”
6. Co-workers – “All the jobs, positions and people changed my life as I did theirs, every single day I went to work.”
7. Fellow church members – “Everyone…needs to belong to a church no matter whether they believe or not. They need to do so because the questions asked and debated in churches are the most important questions.”
I was given a free copy of this book to review by BookLook
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