Happier at Home

I read Happier at Home by Gretchen Rubin a long time ago and just got around to publishing my notes on it. As I re-read my notes, I get the feeling that this book is jam packed of little tips similar to ‘Don’t sweat the small stuff.” So here’s the download:

  1. On emotions: Under-react to a problem.
  2. On connection: "Enter into the interest of others.” -Tolstoy
  3. On self control: “Limits set you free.”  You drain your self control with every decision your make. Preserve your self control reserve by setting limits to automate your decisions.  The nuance is that limit-setting will be different for moderators vs abstainers. I am a moderator and my husband is an abstainer.  I can eat 2 chips out of a bag and close it for another sitting, but he will lick the bag before he stops. So my limit would be 2 chips per day, and his limit would be no chips except of 1 bag on Sunday. 
  4. On Possessions: People have different tolerance for an optimal number of possessions.  Ownership can bring joy too and stuff can also be an experience.  I live on the low-count end of the spectrum and my husband lives on the high-count end.
  5. On Purging:  Allow yourself to keep a few symbolic items per category to make purging easier.  When my parents sold the house I grew up in, I took pictures of my possessions there before purging 100% of it.  Knowing I can still see the pictures helped me let go of these objects I no longer needed. 
  6. On Happiness: Beware of happiness leaches.  Hang out with Tiggers not Eeyores. 
  7. On Positivity: Make the positive argument.  When you are about to complain about spouse or children such as thinking "He's so messy,”  Try to argue the opposite.  For example, thinking “He’s so clean,” and look for evidence of it. 
  8. On Exercise:  Get a dog.  All you have to do is put on your running shoes and close the front door.