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Podcast 32: Why Elizabeth and I Raise the Bar, the Surprising Downside of Teasing–and Please Comment on Four Tendencies.


It’s time for the next installment of  “Happier with Gretchen Rubin.

Update: I talk about Barnaby, our new dog! (As promised, here's a picture of Barnaby with our producer, Henry Molofsky.) And a shout-out to our super-fans in Omaha, Nebraska.

Also, you'll hear us talk about our new (and we hope improved, though Elizabeth is doubtful) way of referring to previous episodes, so that you can easily find them here on my site. That's (or the number of whatever episode you're looking for).

Try This at Home: Raise the bar (yes, you remember that right, in episode 29 we suggested lowering the bar; the opposite of a profound truth is also true). What works for you -- lowering or raising the bar, or both?

Happiness Stumbling Block: It turns out that friendly teasing is often not perceived to be as friendly as the teaser intends.  How about you? Have you ever had a less-than-positive experience with teasing?

We refer to two books: Self-Insight: Roadblocks and Detours on the Path to Knowing Thyself by David Dunning and Best Friends, Worst Enemies: Understanding the Social Lives of Children by Michael Thompson et al.

Listener Questioner: In our Very Special Episode 30, we had a very special guest -- my daughter Eliza. She asked, “Do you have advice for a sixteen-year-old like me?” The answers are so thought-provoking and helpful. We play some highlights.

Gretchen’s Demerit: I don't reassure Jamie when he needs reassurance.

Elizabeth’s Gold Star: Elizabeth, to her surprise, loves attending Chapel at her son Jack's school.

Call for comments, questions, observations! We're going to spend four weeks talking about my Four Tendencies framework for human nature. So we want to hear from you:


Please, send in our questions and comments by voicemail, email, etc. What's your experience with yourself, spouse, child, patient, colleague, boss, friend, etc? We're dying to hear from you.


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