Years ago I read The Happiness Project, by Gretchen Rubin, and absolutely loved it. Gretchen researched experts, theories and philosophies of happiness to come up with her own Happiness Project Plan. Every month she had a small list of resolutions she adopted. The book tells the story of how those resolutions impacted her life.
I recently discovered Happier, a podcast by Gretchen Rubin and her sister Liz Craft. After reading Happiness Project, I was quickly a fan of listening to these sisters chat about all things happiness. The podcast led me back to...
I just read Gretchen Rubin's book Happier At Home. It was actually published in 2012 but I just got around to reading it. Just like her first book and the podcast-- it was enlightening, inspiring and held so many secrets to happiness that I have already started to adopt into my own life and home. The woman is brilliant.
Here are just some of my favorite parts of this most recent read. I'm not sure if they'll all translate as stand alone ideas, but I would recommend putting the book on your list so you can read the whole thing.
"I was able to change my life without changing my life."
"The true secret of happiness lies in the taking a genuine interest in all the details of daily life." -William Morris, "The Aims of Art"
"...my idea of living on the edge is to leave the apartment without a sweater."
"It's ok to plan ahead to be spontaneous-- only with careful preparation do I feel carefree."
"One of the best ways to make myself happy is to make other people happy; one of the best ways to make other people happy is to be happy myself."
"My ordinary routine should reflect the things most important to me."
"My goal then was to rid our home of things that didn't matter, to make more room for the things that did. As I thought about my home and my possessions, a line from the Bible kept running through my mind. Jesus said: Where your treasure is, there your heart will be also. The relationship between my heart and my treasure was something I sought to understand more clearly."
"To eke out as much happiness from an experience, we must anticipate it, savor it as it unfolds, express happiness, and recall a happy memory. Photographs are a very helpful tool for prompting happy memories. As many as 85 percent of adults keep photos or mementos in their wallets or on their work desks, and happy families tend to display large numbers of photographs in their homes."
"People make the argument all the time that you have to choose! But it's a false choice. People can be important to you AND possessions can be important to you."
"You need new friends and old friends."
"Clean as you go."
"I cleaned out our closets, and I feel as though I lost ten pounds."
"I wanted my home to be filled with objects of symbolic and sentimental attraction as well as practical value."
"Happiness is not having less. Happiness is not having more. Happiness is wanting what I have."
"If I've learned one thing from my happiness project, it's that if I want my life to be a certain way, I must be that way myself. If I want my home to be positive and playful, I must be positive and playful. If I want my marriage to be appreciative and romantic, I must be appreciative and romantic."
"It seems preposterous to schedule some things, but if something's important to me, I should make time for it."
"It isn't enough to love; we must prove it."
"The one thing about her that I always loved was that she was never one of those people who thinks that someone else is the answer to their happiness. Me or anybody else. She's always had her own built-in happiness."
"People who feel in control of their lives, which is powerfully bolstered by feeling in control of time, are more likely to feel happy."
"The pleasure of doing the same thing, in the same way, every day, shouldn't be overlooked. The things I do every day take on a certain beauty and provide a kind of invisible architecture to my life. What I do almost every day matters more than what I do once in a while."
"One day, gladly or reluctantly, I would leave my apartment behind, and the anticipation of this departure made me love it more."
"I am living my real life, this is it. Now is now, and if I waited to be happier, waited to have fun, waited to do the things that I know I ought to do, I might never get the chance."