Authentic = Happy: A Guide to Dismantling Your Disguise {book review}

Since I met Julianne Harvey at a writing event, I’ve followed her blog as she’s written about chasing her writing goals and working through some personal struggles. She has organized writing retreats and helped create spaces for other writers in the community to focus on their own writing, launched a new website, and released a children’s book. Now she’s written an eBook, Authentic = Happy: A Guide to Dismantling Your Disguise, about being true to yourself and living authentically.

Authentic = Happy: A Guide to Dismantling Your Disguise(This post contains affiliate links; as an Amazon associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.)

Authentic = Happy

Julianne points out that when we live without disguises, we are happier. Most of us have disguises—masks we put on to please those around us or to keep from getting hurt—but it takes a lot of effort to maintain those disguises. Sometimes, in keeping track of all the masks we wear, we lose sight of who we really are (or who we want to be). And when we are trying to be someone we aren’t, we won’t be happy.

In Authentic = Happy, Julianne presents five steps for letting go of those disguises and finding ourselves.

As I read Julianne’s words, I found myself nodding and remembering my childhood and teenage years. I used to think that if I could be the perfect daughter, my parents would love me more (and be happier themselves). If I could be the perfect friend, I would have more friends. The problem was that I often tried to be like my friends instead of being myself. When I reached university, I found new friends. We all had different majors, different backgrounds, different opinions on a lot of things—but as I hung out with them, I found I could be myself and still be accepted.

The one thing I wanted from Julianne’s book was more examples like that. Authentic = Happy is full of concrete steps and advice, but I wanted some personal experience—a few stories that would help me picture those steps in action and encourage me to apply them.

At the end of Authentic = Happy, Julianne includes some Group Discussion Questions. Reading this book with a couple of close friends who can encourage you in the journey would be an excellent idea. The questions could also be used in a personal journal.

Authentic = Happy is a short, quick read available on Smashwords or Amazon.  For more information about Julianne, check out her website.

More about Julianne Harvey

Julianne Harvey is an author, speaker and nurturer from South Surrey, BC. She has four self-published books and is at work on her first YA novel. Julianne holds a certificate in Counseling Skills and is an award-winning student at Kwantlen Polytechnic University, pursuing her BA in Creative Writing. She is a background performer in Vancouver’s film & TV industry and manages her daughter’s acting career. Simplicity, vulnerability and authentic connection are her biggest passions. Authentic = Happy was her first book.

Find out more about Julianne and her writing on her website. You can also read my interview with Julianne.

Do you agree with Julianne’s assertion that authenticity and happiness are linked? 

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  1. Julianne Harvey February 24, 2012
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  3. Nat February 23, 2012
  4. Koala Bear Writer February 23, 2012
  5. Julianne Harvey February 21, 2012
  6. Koala Bear Writer February 21, 2012
  7. Julianne Harvey February 17, 2012

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