Joseph Novello's new book has a simple but powerful message: People constantly chase after happiness, but in confusing happiness with pleasure, they set themselves up for continual frustration and failure. Pleasure is a short-term high that comes from without, while happiness is an abiding serenity that comes from within. Happiness lies in accepting who we are right now and what we have right now.
A major obstacle to happiness is one's "lifetraps", patterns of behavior that helped us cope in childhood but which now cause us to be dysfunctional as adults. What began as habits end up as core components of our personality. But even after overcoming these lifetraps, Novello discovered, people still need to go further to find happiness; they need to discover the spirituality within life and within themselves.