How to Handle a Hard Transition, a Toys Hack, and Discussion of Our Most Popular Ideas


We’ll be talking to the brilliant Anne Lamott on an upcoming Book Club episode. Read her bestselling book of essays, Somehow: Thoughts on Love (Amazon, Bookshop), or her book about writing, Bird by Bird (Amazon, Bookshop), and her wonderful, thought-provoking memoir Operating Instructions: A Journal of My Son’s First Year (Amazon, Bookshop). Send us your questions and comments.

Try This at Home

Train for a tough transition.

Happiness Hack

Store stuffed animals in a stuffable zipper beanbag chair.

Happier Highlight

Back in to 2016, we got a listener question that inspired an answer from a listener that people continue to refer to, so we’re highlighting that question and answer.

The original question came in episode 78. A listener was distraught because she’d lost her engagement ring.

In episode 82, we discussed a listener’s response:

In our culture, Japanese sometimes believe things can take your place in the event of a bad happening such as an accident.  It’s totally a myth, but it is not too difficult to think about losing things that way for us.  Maybe the listener who lost her wedding ring can think that her precious ring protected her from bad things.

A listener wrote to say that a few weeks ago, she used this idea to calm herself when her dress’s zipper broke at an important time.

I read a quotation from The Old Ways: A Journey on Foot (Amazon, Bookshop) by Robert Macfarlane:

A warning, I thought superstitiously, had been issued to me: that the going would not be easy, and that romanticism would be quickly punished. It was only a few miles later that I remembered the letter a friend had sent me when I told him about my plan to walk the Icknield Way. Take care as you pass the ring-fort, he had written back. When I mentioned the fall later, he was unamazed. ‘This was an entry fee to the old ways, charged at one of the usual tollbooths,’ he said. ‘Now you can proceed. You’re in. Bone for chalk: you’ve paid your due.’ It was the first of several incidents along the old ways that I still find hard to explain away rationally.

Demerits & Gold Stars

Elizabeth’s Demerit: She hasn’t been consistent with her One-Sentence Journal for #Write24in24.

Gretchen’s Gold Star: I give a gold star to the extremely useful flashlight feature on smartphones.


The Happiness Project Collection has some great digital resources. You can find the bestselling Happiness Project Companion Guide, video workshops, gift cards, and more.

What We’re Reading

  • Elizabeth: Anne of Green Gables by L. M. Montgomery (Amazon, Bookshop)
  • Gretchen: The Old Ways: A Journey on Foot by Robert Macfarlane (Amazon, Bookshop)

Transcript coming soon. 

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