I thought of you when I read this quote from “The Happiness Project: Or, Why I Spent a Year Trying to Sing in the Morning, Clean My Closets, Fight Right, Read Aristotle, and Generally Have More Fun” by Gretchen Rubin –
“First, I needed to change my approach to household work. I was spending too much time handing out assignments and nagging, and not only was I nagging Jamie to do his work, I was nagging him to give me praise for my work. Also, I wanted to become more lighthearted, especially in moments of anger. A line by G. K. Chesterton echoed in my head: “It is easy to be heavy: hard to be light”(or, as the saying goes, “Dying is easy; comedy is hard”). And I wanted to stop taking Jamie for granted. Small, frequent gestures of thoughtfulness were more important than flowers on Valentine’s Day, and I wanted to load Jamie with small treats and courtesies, praise and appreciation—after all, as my Secret of Adulthood holds, “What you do every day matters more than what you do once in a while.”
Jamie didn’t ask me what experiments I’d planned for the month, and I didn’t tell him. I knew him well enough to know that although he realized that, in some ways, he was my lab rat, hearing about the details would make him feel self-conscious.
These resolutions were going to be tough for me—I knew that. I wasn’t unrealistic enough to expect to be able to keep every resolution, every day, but I wanted to aim higher than I had. One reason I started my happiness project by raising my energy and clearing my clutter was that I knew I’d be more able to act lighthearted and loving if I didn’t feel overwhelmed by mental or physical disorder. It seemed ridiculous, but already, having a tidier closet and getting more sleep was putting me into a happier and more peaceable frame of mind. The challenge would be to keep up with January’s resolutions now that I was adding a new list of resolutions for February.”
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