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  • gretchenrubin 20:57:49 on 2017/03/17 Permalink
    Tags: , , , , , , self-command, , , treats   

    What Healthy Treats Do You Give Yourself? (Note the “Healthy.”) 


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    healthy treats

    In my book Better Than Before, I describe the many strategies that we can use to change our habits. We all have our favorite strategies — but I think most of us would agree that the Strategy of Treats is the most fun strategy.

    “Treats” may sound like a self-indulgent, frivolous strategy, but it’s not. Because forming good habits can be draining, treats can play an important role.

    When we give ourselves treats, we feel energized, cared for, and contented, which boosts our self-command—and self-command helps us maintain our healthy habits.

    Studies show that people who got a little treat, in the form of receiving a surprise gift or watching a funny video, gained in self-control. It’s a Secret of Adulthood: If I give more to myself, I can ask more from myself. Self-regard isn’t selfish.

    If I give more to myself, I can ask more from myself. Self-regard isn’t selfish.

    Click to tweet

    When we don’t get any treats, we begin to feel burned-out, depleted, and resentful.  We start to feel deprived — and feeling deprived is a very bad frame of mind for good habits.

    When we feel deprived, we feel entitled to put ourselves back in balance. We say, “I’ve earned this,” “I need this,” “I deserve this” and feel entitled to break our good habits.

    So we need treats.

    But it’s crucial to give ourselves healthy treats, because unhealthy treats are often bad for us. We don’t want to give ourselves something to feel better that just makes us ending up feeling worse. Like a costly splurge, an extra glass of wine, a big brownie.

    All of us should have a long list of potential healthy treats. That way, when we think, “I need a treat,” we have ideas.

    For something to be a treat, we have to think of it as a treat; we make something a treat by calling it a “treat.” When we notice our pleasure, and relish it, the experience becomes much more of a treat. Even something as humble as herbal tea or a box of freshly sharpened pencils can qualify as a treat.

    For instance, once I realized how much I love beautiful smells, a whole new world of treats opened up to me. If I need a treat, I visit my “collection of smells” in my apartment or I stop by a perfume counter.

    At the same time, it’s important not to call something a “treat” if it’s not really a treat. It may be good for you, and it may even feel good, but it’s not a treat if you don’t look forward to it with pleasure. So a yoga class could be a treat for someone, but it’s not a treat for me. I do it, and I’m glad I do it, but I don’t think, “Oh, yay, time for yoga!”

    Sometimes, treats don’t look like treats. For example, to my surprise, many people consider ironing a “treat.”

    Here are some other treats I’ve heard about:

    • crossword puzzles
    • looking at art books
    • shopping at a very expensive store (no possibility of buying, so just enjoy looking)
    • translating Latin
    • breaking codes
    • manicure (I never get manicures and dread them; the opposite of a treat for me)
    • visiting camping stores
    • online shopping (I heard from many people who enjoy online shopping with no plan to buy–they have fun filling their cart, then abandon it)
    • choosing plants and seed for the garden
    • video games and phone games
    • getting a massage
    • taking a bath, especially if with special bath salts
    • buying yourself flowers
    • visiting a special place (a park, sculpture, or museum)

     

    If you want to hear me and Elizabeth talk about why you should treat yourself, listen to this episode of the Happier podcast.

    And if you want to hear Donna and Tom of Parks and Recreation talk about their annual Treat Yo’ Self day, watch the hilarious clip here.

    What healthy treats are on your list?

    The post What Healthy Treats Do You Give Yourself? (Note the “Healthy.”) appeared first on Gretchen Rubin.

     
  • feedwordpress 18:02:41 on 2016/12/07 Permalink
    Tags: , , , , , Jonathan Field, , , treats, , vitality,   

    Podcast 94: Don’t Treat Yourself, an Interview with Jonathan Fields, and Two Podcasts Recommendations. 


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    colorful-cupcakes

    It’s time for the next installment of  Happier with Gretchen Rubin.

    Holidays are approaching! Want a Happier t-shirt? Email us if you want to get one. Or if you want to buy one of my books, journals, calendar, mug, etc., look here.

    Try This at Home: Don’t treat yourself. We talked before in episode 9 about why you should treat yourself, and in Better Than Before, I have a whole chapter on how healthy treats can help us stick to our good habits — but the opposite of a profound truth is also true, so it’s also true that we shouldn’t treat ourselves.

    If you’re curious to read more about loopholes, here’s a list of all ten categories of loopholes. I get the biggest kick out of the loopholes.

    If you want to read more about the idea of making a planned exception, I discuss my friend’s “pie policy” here.

    Happiness Hack: Clare suggests, “If you travel, put a work shoe in the safe, so you won’t leave the hotel without checking the safe.”

    Interview: Jonathan Fields, author of How to Live a Good Life and the podcast Good Life Project. To take the quiz Jonathan mentions, go here.

    I mention that I’ve launched an app, the Better app, to help people learn about the Four Tendencies — and also to help people form Accountability Groups (Obligers, I’m thinking about you!). Learn all about it here. Don’t know about the Four Tendencies — about whether you’re an Upholder, Questioner, Obliger, or Rebel? Learn about the framework and take the quiz here.

    Gretchen’s Demerit: I dithered on an important decision.

    Elizabeth’s Gold Star: Elizabeth recommends two podcasts: The Other F Word, where the “f word” here is “failure, and Short & Sweet, which is about “adulting.”

    And once again, here’s the link to the Happier 911 playlist on Spotify.

    If you want easy instructions about how to rate or review the podcast, look here.

    Remember,  I’m doing weekly live videos on my Facebook Page to continue the conversation from the podcast — usually on Tuesdays at 3:00 pm ET. To join the conversation, check the schedule.

    As always, thanks to our terrific sponsors

    Sign up for The Great Courses Plus today for access to thousands of fascinating lectures taught by top professors and experts in their fields. Special offer for our listeners: try it for free when you sign up at www.thegreatcoursesplus.com/happier.

    Check out Stamps.com. Want to avoid trips to the post office, and buy and print official U.S. postage for any letter or package, right from your own computer and printer? Visit Stamps.com to sign up for a 4-week trial, plus a $110 bonus offer — just enter the promo code HAPPIER.

    And check out Olive and Cocoa. Surprise someone you love with a meaningful gift today. Go to OliveandCocoa.com/happier to see gift options specifically chosen for our listeners.

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    We love hearing from listeners:

     

    To sign up for my free monthly newsletter, text me at 66866 and enter the word (surprise) “happier.“ Or click here.

    If you enjoyed the podcast, please tell your friends and give us a rating or review. Click here to tell your friends on Twitter.

    Listeners really respect the views of other listeners, so your response helps people find good material. (Not sure how to review? Instructions here; scroll to the bottom.)

    How to Subscribe

    If you’re like me (until recently) you’re intrigued by podcasts, but you don’t know how to listen or subscribe. It’s very easy, really. Really.  To listen to more than one episode, and to have it all in a handier way, on your phone or tablet, it’s better to subscribe. Really, it’s easy.

    Want to know what to expect from other episodes of the podcast, when you listen to the award-winning Happier with Gretchen Rubin?” We talk about how to build happier habits into everyday life, as we draw from cutting-edge science, ancient wisdom, lessons from pop culture—and our own experiences (and mistakes).  We’re sisters, so we don’t let each other get away with much.

    HAPPIER listening!

    The post Podcast 94: Don’t Treat Yourself, an Interview with Jonathan Fields, and Two Podcasts Recommendations. appeared first on Gretchen Rubin.

     
  • feedwordpress 18:08:17 on 2016/06/15 Permalink
    Tags: , , , Los Angeles, , Moby, , , , , , , , surprise, treats, ,   

    Podcast 69: Give a Surprise Treat, a Conversation with Musician Moby, and Double Gold Stars. 


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    Moby on Happier Podcast

    It’s time for the next installment of  “Happier with Gretchen Rubin.

    Update: Keep sending us those “happiness hacks!” They’re fascinating. To hear about my happiness hack, it’s in episode 64.

    Remember,  I’m doing weekly live videos on my Facebook Page about the podcast. To join the conversation, tune in Tuesdays at 1:00 p.m. Eastern.

    Try This at Home: Give someone a surprise treat. This is fun!

    Here’s the article about The Great Courses: Sarah Max’sBorn in the VCR Era, Great Courses Seeks to Evolve.”

    Interview: The iconic musician and writer Moby. His fascinating new memoir is Porcelain.

    Here’s the quote from E. B. White that I mention:

    “Margaret Mitchell once remarked: ‘It is a full-time job to be the author of ‘Gone With the Wind.’ This remark greatly impressed me, as being an admission of defeat, American style. (Miss Mitchell, incidentally, was not overstating the matter—she never produced another book.)”  –E.B. White, Letters, May 7, 1961

    Elizabeth’s Gold Star: Elizabeth has been making stir-fry vegetables for herself.

    Gretchen’s Gold Star: I moved my Scent Library to a more convenient spot in the apartment.
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    Gretchen Rubin scents

    As always, thanks to our terrific sponsors

    heck out The Great Courses Plus for a wide variety of fascinating courses taught by top professors and experts in their fields. Special offer for our listeners: free access to one of their most popular courses, for free as part of a 30-day trial, when you sign up. Go to thegreatcoursesplus.com/happier

    And check out Stamps.com. Want to avoid trips to the post office, and buy and print official U.S. postage for any letter or package, right from your own computer and printer? Visit Stamps.com to sign up for a 4-week trial, plus a $110 bonus offer — just enter the promo code HAPPIER.

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    We love hearing from listeners:

    To sign up for my free monthly newsletter, text me at 66866 and enter the word (surprise) “happier.“ Or click here.

    If you enjoyed the podcast, please tell your friends and give us a rating or review. Click here to tell your friends on Twitter.

    Listeners really respect the views of other listeners, so your response helps people find good material. (Not sure how to review? Instructions here; scroll to the bottom.)

    How to Subscribe

    If you’re like me (until recently) you’re intrigued by podcasts, but you don’t know how to listen or subscribe. It’s very easy, really. Really.  To listen to more than one episode, and to have it all in a handier way, on your phone or tablet, it’s better to subscribe. Really, it’s easy.

    Want to know what to expect from other episodes of the podcast, when you listen toHappier with Gretchen Rubin?” We talk about how to build happier habits into everyday life, as we draw from cutting-edge science, ancient wisdom, lessons from pop culture—and our own experiences (and mistakes).  We’re sisters, so we don’t let each other get away with much.

    HAPPIER listening!

    The post Podcast 69: Give a Surprise Treat, a Conversation with Musician Moby, and Double Gold Stars. appeared first on Gretchen Rubin.

     
  • feedwordpress 18:25:05 on 2016/01/06 Permalink
    Tags: , , , , , , , , , , treats   

    Podcast 46: Don’t Get Organized, Dealing with Sentimental Items, Dealing with Rewards and Treats–and We Hit Five Million! 


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    Happier with Gretchen Rubin - #46 - Don't get organized

    It’s time for the next installment of  “Happier with Gretchen Rubin.

    Update: Elizabeth reports on reader advice about how she can make an appointment to get her hair cut.

    Try This at Home: Don’t get organized. If you get rid of that stuff, you don’t have to organize it!

    Happiness Stumbling Block: It’s tough to let go of sentimental items, but they can become overwhelming.

    I mention my post “What do you do with holiday cards? Keep, Toss, Store…” Fascinating answers.

    Listener Question: “How do you distinguish between rewards and treats, and how do you decide when you should get one?”

    1pixBarnabyinConeGretchen’s Demerit: Barnaby had an operation, and I didn’t react in a calm way. Here he is in his cone, or “Elizabethan collar” as the vet called it, which he did not enjoy. Now he’s all healed and free!

    Eleanor’s Gold Star: Elizabeth gives a gold star to the podcast Another Round. Note: they do use strong language, if that’s an issue.

    Newsflash! We hit five million downloads! While we were recording. Thank you, listeners, and thanks for recommending it to other people!

    Remember, if you live in the Bay area:  Elizabeth and I are doing our first live recording of the podcast! January 21, Brava Theater, we hope to see you. Info and tickets here.  We’ll have two outstanding guests, Nir Eyal and Jake Knapp. Plus Elizabeth and I have planned special little treats, and you also get a copy of Better Than Before with your ticket.

     

    As always, thanks to our terrific sponsors

    Visit Framebridge.com — a terrific way to get your art and photos framed, in a super easy and affordable way. Use the code HAPPIER at checkout to get 20% off your first Framebridge order. Shipping is free.

    Also check out Stamps.com. Want to avoid post-office pain, and buy and print official U.S. postage for any letter or package, right from your own computer and printer? Visit Stamps.com to sign up for a no-risk trial, plus a $110 bonus offer — just enter the promo code HAPPIER.

    1pixHappier Podcast #46

    We love hearing from listeners

     

    To sign up for my free monthly newsletter, text me at 66866 and enter the word (surprise) “happier.“ Or click here.

    If you enjoyed the podcast, please tell your friends and give us a rating or review. Click here to tell your friends on Twitter.

    Listeners really respect the views of other listeners, so your response helps people find good material. (Not sure how to review? Instructions here; scroll to the bottom.)

    1pix

    How to Subscribe

    If you’re like me (until recently) you’re intrigued by podcasts, but you don’t know how to listen or subscribe. It’s very easy, really. Really.  To listen to more than one episode, and to have it all in a handier way, on your phone or tablet, it’s better to subscribe. Really, it’s easy.

    Want to know what to expect from other episodes of the podcast, when you listen toHappier with Gretchen Rubin?” We talk about how to build happier habits into everyday life, as we draw from cutting-edge science, ancient wisdom, lessons from pop culture—and our own experiences (and mistakes).  We’re sisters, so we don’t let each other get away with much!

    HAPPIER listening!

     
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