Podcast 264: Keep a Stress Diary, Stop Rinsing Dirty Dishes, and Jordan Harbinger Explains How to Network Better.

Try This at Home

Keep a stress diary. Elizabeth points out that this is the opposite of a gratitude journal!

One issue with “stress” is that it’s so vague, it doesn’t help us identify problems that can be solved. “Identify the problem” is one of my Twelve Personal Commandments.

If this subject is of special interest to you, might want to listen to our Very Special Episode 240, “Use the Emergency Kit for Anxiety, Worry, and Stress.”

Happiness Hack

Don’t rinse your dishes before putting them in the dishwasher. This magical saves time, energy, money, and the planet!

It turns out we don’t need to rinse dishes before putting them in the dishwasher. (The important thing is to scrape off the larger pieces of leftover food that could clog the pipes.)

Because of improvements made to dishwasher technology and detergents, you might actually get a worse result if you rinse the dishes because the rinsed plates send a miscue about how much cleaning is needed.

You get cleaner dishes, and you also save a tremendous amount of water—up to 6,000 gallons per year if you’re pre-rinsing.

Also, according to The National Resource Defense Council, the average modern dishwasher uses just 3 to 5 gallons of water per load, but typical hand-washers use around 27 gallons of water and twice the amount of electricity per load, to do the wash by hand.

You may need to experiment, depending on how old your dishwasher is. If it’s very old, this may not be as true.

If you want to read more:

Interview: Jordan Harbinger.

Jordan Harbinger is the host of the terrific podcast The Jordan Harbinger Show, which was listed by Apple as one of the most downloaded new shows of 2018. On it, he talks to some of the world’s top performers—all kinds of people, including me!

One thing that he’s studied a lot is how to connect better with other people. We wanted to talk to him about the dreaded term “networking”—which is actually just staying in touch with people.

Jordan’s Try This at Home: Do the “connect four” exercise, where you systematically reconnect with people you haven’t texted with for a long time.

Elizabeth’s Demerit: She hasn’t found a voice coach to help her strengthen her voice.

Gretchen’s Gold Star: I give a gold star to the Metropolitan Museum for staying open until 9:00 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays. Now that I visit the Met every day, I really appreciate these longer hours, which give me more flexibility. And there’s a very different, fun atmosphere at night.


  • If you are working on habits, download my Checklist for Habit Change here (scroll down to “Better Than Before”). This one-page chart will help you deploy the 21 strategies for habit change, as you work on a crucial key habit that you want to master. If you want to learn more about the 21 habit strategies, read or listen to my book, Better Than Before.
  •  Want to chat with other podcast listeners about our book club picks? Follow me on Goodreads and join the Happier Podcast Book Club group on Goodreads to share your thoughts with other book lovers.




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