Can small changes in your life really make you happier? After reading Gretchen Rubin’s The Happiness Project, I believe the answer is yes!
For one year, Rubin sets out to read all she can about what makes people happy, and then test out several of the ideas as changes in her own life. Each month her changes focus on a theme, like friendship, work or marriage.
In January, the first month of her project, Rubin focuses on ways to boost her energy, and her changes include going to sleep earlier and exercising better. But she also adds organizing to her Jan plan…getting rid of the clutter that accumulated in the corners of her apartment, and also taking care of some long-overdue tasks.
Rubin guesses that creating “outer order…would bring inner peace” (p. 18) and that completing a nagging task would help clear her mental clutter. At the end of the January, after Rubin has cleared her clutter and To Do List, she shares, “I was astonished by the change of energy and satisfaction I got from creating order” (p. 37).
I love how she connects the idea of organizing to getting more energy. I’ve found the same to be true: crossing a critical project off my list or creating order out of chaos does create positive energy, and I tend to feel happier.
Can you use a new burst of energy in your life? Try 10 minutes a day of de-cluttering and tackling that nagging task and see how you feel.
For more on The Happiness Project, including online tools to start your own project, check out Gretchen Rubin’s blog.