478: An Easy Way to Make Life More Interesting, Plus Hacks for Creativity and Commuting


If you’re looking for a Mother’s Day gift idea, consider the Know Yourself Better: Building Connections Journal. It makes a terrific gift—or request it for yourself.

Try This at Home

Read a book that sheds a light on how things works.

We mention several excellent books:

    • Traffic: Why We Drive the Way We Do (and What It Says About Us) by Tom Vanderbilt (Amazon, Bookshop
    • Inside of a Dog: What Dogs See, Smell, and Know by Alexandra Horowitz (Amazon, Bookshop
    • Heads in Beds: A Reckless Memoir of Hotels, Hustles, and So-Called Hospitality by Jacob Tomsky (Amazon, Bookshop
    • The Secret Life of Groceries: The Dark Miracle of the American Supermarket by Benjamin Lorr (Amazon, Bookshop
    • A Pattern Language: Towns, Buildings, Construction by Christopher Alexander (Amazon, Bookshop
    • Cruise Confidential: A Hit Below the Waterline: Where the Crew Lives, Eats, Wars and Parties by Brian David Bruns (Amazon, Bookshop
    • How to Win the Bachelor: The Secret to Finding Love and Fame on America’s Favorite Reality Show by Chad Kultgen and Lizzy Pace (Amazon, Bookshop)

Happiness Hack

A listener suggests using “avoid freeways” on your navigation app as a way to make driving more pleasant.

The “Write” Way

One of the best ways to make yourself want to write? Read.

I mention the book People Who Led to My Plays by Adrienne Kennedy (Amazon, Bookshop).

If you want the Life in Five Senses Discussion Guide, you can get it here. If you’re hosting a book-club discussion of the book, enter your book club for a chance to win a virtual drop-in from me. I can’t wait to do these.

Fun with the Five Senses

Does your sleep feel heavy or light?

Demerits & Gold Stars

Elizabeth’s Demerit: She’s behind on her doctor’s appointments. 

Gretchen’s Gold Star: I give a gold star to my husband, Jamie, for his frequent calls just to “check in.”


Take the “What’s Your Most Neglected Sense?” quiz to identify your neglected sense, and find a new source of comfort, calm, and creativity.

What We’re Reading

Transcript coming soon. 

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