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Podcast 233: Get Rid of Your Wart (Literal and Metaphorical) and Connect Better with Friends.


Update: If you’ve been listening to the podcast for a while, you may remember that last year, for Labor Day, we discussed #HappierLaborDay. And we’re doing it again this year. Just as Valentine’s Day is a day to think about romantic relationships, and New Year’s Day is a day to think about what goals for the upcoming year, we can use Labor Day as a day to think about our own labor.

Of course, we can reflect on this question at any time—yes, Questioners, Labor Day is an arbitrary date—but it's a Secret of Adulthood that something that can be done at any time is often done at no time. 

As I write about in my book Happier at Home, for many of us, September is the other January. It feels like a fresh new start to the year, and a good time to re-evaluate. So it’s helpful to have an external prompt to ask ourselves, "What could I do to make my work life happier, healthier, more productive, and more creative?

Post your ideas, questions, reflections about using “Labor Day” as a catalyst here in the comments, or post to #HappierLaborDay.

We’re doing this across the Onward Project podcasts. Side Hustle School is going to talk about this issue, and so is Happier in Hollywood. We all come to it from a different perspective.

Try This at Home: Get rid of your wart—literally or metaphorically. Not our most poetically worded try-this-at-home!

One of my favorite quotations, from Samuel Johnson is: "There is nothing, Sir, too little for a creature as man. It is by studying little things that we attain the great art of having as little misery and as much happiness as possible."

Happiness Hack: This hack comes from my daughter Eliza. If you're wondering if an internet site is down, or if it's a problem just for you, go to the site: (the shortcut URL is

Know Yourself Better: What kind of social activities make you feel most connected to other people?

Listener Question: Leslie asks whether Elizabeth can turn off her professional TV-writer brain and just enjoy watching TV, or whether she's always analyzing what she's watching.

Gretchen's Demerit: I had a very difficult time staying flexible when my travel plans had to change, because of bad weather.

I think my challenge might be an aspect of my Upholderness. Don't know if you're an Upholder, Questioner, Obliger, or Rebel? Take the quick, free quiz here.

Elizabeth's Gold Star: Elizabeth gives herself a gold star for taking advantage of summer in L.A.—she bought tickets so that she and Adam went to a show at the Greek Theater. She mentions episode 114 of Happier in Hollywood, when she and Sarah talked about why we should "make plans immediately."


  1. The audio-book of my short, unconventional biography of Winston Churchill, Forty Ways to Look at Winston Churchill, is now available on Audible and Apple Books.
  2. I recently shared my Outer Order, Inner Calm Manifesto on Instagram, and many people wanted a copy to print out and display. If you want one, visit and download the free PDF to remind you of some simple ideas to help create and maintain outer order.
  3. If you want to look up information related to the sponsors or an offer code, go to, or the show notes for this episode.

Quote From the Podcast

There is nothing, Sir, too little for a creature as man. It is by studying little things that we attain the great art of having as little misery and as much happiness as possible.
Samuel Johnson

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