Gretchen Rubin

Gretchen Rubin

My experiments in the pursuit of happiness and good habits


Agree, Disagree? Outer Order Contributes to Inner Calm.

August 11th, 2015

Episode 110 of 372 episodes

From Further Secrets of Adulthood: Outer order contributes to inner calm. Agree, disagree? One of the things about happiness that continually surprises me is the degree to which, for most people, outer order contributes to inner calm, and inner self-command. In the context of a happy life, a crowded coat closet or an overflowing in-box is trivial, and yet such things weigh us down more than they should. That’s why I follow habits like making my bed and the one-minute rule, and why one of the most important strategies of habit formation is the Strategy of Foundation. A friend once told me, “I finally cleaned out my fridge, and now I know I can switch careers” — and I knew exactly how that felt. A good clutter-clearing makes me feel more energetic, more creative, and more in command of myself. And I know where my keys are! Do you agree — that there’s a weirdly tight connection between getting control of the stuff of life and feeling in control of your life, generally?