Podcast 167: Be a Tourist in Your Own Home, Deep Dive into the “Season of Stress,” and How to Keep an Empty Shelf in Your Smartphone.


Many listeners had their own great names for a “Power Down Weekend.” My favorite is a “Templeton Day,” after the pleasure-loving rat in the brilliant children’s book, Charlotte’s Web.

Try This at Home

Be a tourist in your own home. (The photo shows the tubs on Elizabeth’s new garage shelves.)

Happiness Hack

Create an “empty shelf” on your smartphone.

I write about my physical empty shelf in my book Happier at Home, and I also did “A Little Happier” about it—you can listen here.

Deep Dive

Listeners gave their suggestions about dealing with a Season of Stress, an idea we discussed in episode 163.
Gretchen’s Demerit: I didn’t prepare ahead of time for the “Learn and Optimize” meeting to evaluate my website re-design. No deposit, no return.

Elizabeth’s Gold Star: She gives a gold star to the other second-grade mothers who encouraged her to try hard to attend the class outing to Las Vegas — and to herself for going.
Don’t miss the special bonus “button” at the very end of the episode. (Hint: It’s a passage from Anne Lamott’s Operating Instructions: A Journal of My Son’s First Year.)


  • If you’d like a free, personalized bookplate for your copy of one of my books, or for a mother in your life, request one here. U.S. and Canada only, sorry.
  • If you’d like to get my monthly newsletter, with highlights from my site, the podcast, preview materials, etc., sign up here.




Like what you see? Explore more about this topic.

Subscribe to Gretchen’s newsletter.

Every Friday, Gretchen Rubin shares 5 things that are making her happier, asks readers and listeners questions, and includes exclusive updates and behind-the-scenes material.