From Gretchen Rubin of The Happiness Project, here are some great pointers for de-stressing.
When I was little, I was always puzzled by the maxim, “A stitch in time saves nine.” I couldn’t figure out what that meant. Finally, light dawned: a single stitch, made in good time, saves the trouble of making nine stitches later. In other words, a little effort now saves a lot of effort later.
That notion underlies several of the tips below. The other notion: when I have a reasonable amount of energy, life feels a lot less stressful.
1. Keep some cash in the house. For years, I badgered my husband to get cash so we had cash in the house. Finally, light dawned: Why did I get to decide that this was his problem? Now I get cash when we need a reserve, and I feel much better.
2. Never let your car’s gas level fall into the “empty” zone. Special note to my fellow under-buyers: if you can afford it, fill the tank! Save yourself from having to return to the gas station in two days.
3. Have an over-the-counter pain reliever at hand at all times.
4. Put your keys away in the same place every day. This sounds so easy—and it is. It will make you so happy.
5. Turn out the light as soon as you’re sleepy. Since I started my happiness project, I’ve become a sleep nut. Getting enough sleep makes a huge difference in my sense of energy and cheerfulness.
6. Walk around the block.
7. Take ten minutes before bed to tidy up.
8. If you have to pack a lunch for anyone, get it ready the night before.
9. Have at least one good friend who lives in the neighborhood.
10. Make your bed. This sounds trivial, I know—but try it, it really helps!
Samuel Johnson pointed out that “To live in perpetual want of little things is a state, not indeed of torture, but of constant vexation.” By making the effort to stay on top of the little things, you can keep the vexation to a minimum.