manual to be happy

manual to be happy

In addition to his books, Fabrice Midal records videos on YouTube in which he answers questions from Internet users. Flammarion photo/ Céline NIESZAWER

Fabrice Midal, a philosopher who gives practical advice in his books, but also YouTube channelthis Wednesday he is publishing a new book titled A Beautiful Promise: Everything that prevents us from being happy and what you need to know to be.

Inside, concrete examples, real-life situations and practical advice. However, Fabrice Midal opposes speeches that sometimes cause a feeling of guilt rather than motivation, according to which to achieve happiness one needs a perfect rhythm of life and complete control over one’s emotions. “We have the idea that happiness is a state of perception in which we are a superman in which everything succeeds, who has no problems. I think this idea only makes us feel guilty,” says Fabrice Midal. “I tried to deconstruct the common idea of ​​happiness, to criticize the stupidity of common conceptions of happiness. »

Moments when you feel happy

To show what disturbs him in these received ideas about happiness, he takes the example of a person who likes to play tennis: “You’re not happy just when you win a match. You happily put on your shoes even if it’s cold, you’re happy to progress, you’re happy with the general movement of playing tennis. »

“If we ask people: when were you happy recently? They don’t react to the moment when they had absolute control, but to the moment when they touched each other, spent time with their children, moments of relationship, meeting…”, he claims.

Step away from

Fabrice Midal refuses to give general advice or magic recipes for happiness. Instead, in his book, he indicates several questions that a person can ask himself. “I think you have to ask yourself: what is stopping me from being happy, now, today? For example, I am stressed. What could help me? I could take things less seriously. Performing this exercise enables a movement that shows us that we can be happy in everyday life. »

Each chapter of his book ends with a few points that can be applied immediately. Here’s an overview of some of these practical tips:

Fabrice Midal outlines three steps to improve self-confidence. First, he recommends that we ask ourselves what skill we lack and focus on a simple goal, which can be easily learned with the help of tutorials. He then explains that “enjoyment builds self-confidence”. So don’t give up at the first hesitation or the slightest failure. In the end, he invites us to continue training and to recognize what we like in order to get to know ourselves well.

First, he encourages us not to try to ignore our shame and suggests asking ourselves whether we are ashamed of what we have done or who we are. In the first case we can change, in the second we will have to accept it. Then he asks, “What can you do to be in tune with yourself?” »

As an exercise, Fabrice Midal suggests counting the number of times during the past week we felt real fear, in the face of real danger. Then, how many times have we experienced unreal fear, fear that our neighbors wouldn’t like us, fear that they wouldn’t look at us with a scowl. “We will most likely be tormented by unreal fears. You recognize them by the fact that they do not help you face a difficulty. He advises not to isolate yourself and seek protection, but to think about the fact that fear “is there to remind you that you are a human being, that you have a living heart, that you want to devote yourself, to live.”

Everything that prevents us from being happy and what you need to know to beFabrice Midal, Flammarion, 251 pages, 19.90 euros.

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