Podcast 294: Imitate a Spiritual Master, a Hack for Toddlers, and a Conversation with Glennon Doyle About “Untamed.”


Our next book club choice: Yaa Gyasi’s unforgettable novel, Transcendent Kingdom (AmazonBookshop). Start reading, and post your questions and comments here or on social media using #happierpodcastbookclub.

Try This at Home

Imitate a spiritual master.

We talked about this back in episode 16, but it seems particularly timely.

To imitate a spiritual master requires several steps:

  • Identify the person
  • Learn about what this person stands for, and perhaps, biography
  • Reflect on why this person has particular meaning for you–what values does this person represent? why do they resonate for you?
  • Figure out how to imitate that person in your own life

I have several spiritual masters, but my most important one is St. Therese of Lisieux.  I mention her spiritual memoir, Story of a Soul (AmazonBookshop).

I also mention Dolly Parton. You can find episodes of “A Little Happier” about Dolly Parton herehereherehere, and here.

I wrote a whole book about my spiritual master Winston Churchill, in Forty Ways to Look at Winston Churchill.

I mention Bryan Stevenson and his brilliant memoir Just Mercy: A Story of Justice and Redemption (AmazonBookshop).

Happiness Hack

Install “hold-open door closer” so that doors will close automatically. 


Glennon Doyle is the mega-bestselling author of the books Carry On, Warrior (AmazonBookshop); Love Warrior (AmazonBookshop); and most recently her #1 New York Times bestseller Untamed (AmazonBookshop). She’s also founder and president of Together Rising, an all-women-led nonprofit organization that supports women, families, and children in crisis.

Here’s the description of Untamed:

For many years, Glennon Doyle denied her own discontent. Then, while speaking at a conference, she looked at a woman across the room and fell instantly in love. Three words flooded her mind: There She Is. At first, Glennon assumed these words came to her from on high. But she soon realized they had come to her from within. This was her own voice—the one she had buried beneath decades of numbing addictions, cultural conditioning, and institutional allegiances. This was the voice of the girl she had been before the world told her who to be. Glennon decided to quit abandoning herself and to instead abandon the world’s expectations of her. She quit being good so she could be free. She quit pleasing and started living. Untamed is both an intimate memoir and a galvanizing wake-up call…It is the story of navigating divorce, forming a new blended family, and discovering that the brokenness or wholeness of a family depends not on its structure but on each member’s ability to bring her full self to the table.

We talk about many things:

  • how she got the idea for the title of the book
  • the tension among rebellion, conformity, and freedom
  • how she realized that her mother, out of love, was distracting her from her own “knowing”
  • why it’s important to be able to disappoint others so that you never disappoint yourself

Fun bonus: Glennon’s wife, superstar soccer player Abby Wambach, made a cameo appearance to provide some tech support for our recording.

Glennon Doyle’s Try This at Home: Get a massive water bottle (barrel-like) to drink more water.

Elizabeth’s Demerit: She’s getting notices and updates from her son Jack’s school, and keeps forgetting to follow up.

Gretchen’s Gold Star: Gold star to everyone who is helping to turn out the vote! By writing postcards, making calls, sending text, helping people to register, and working at the polls—it’s so important.


  • Join my brand-new Outer Order Inner Calm 30-Day SMS Challenge! You’ll get daily text messages with an audio message from me that gives you a simple challenge to create more outer order in your home. Of the people who helped us beta-test this challenge, 92% said they would recommend it to a friend. (Currently, this experience is only available for U.S. and Canada, but my team is working on making it available internationally.) Click here to join
  • Want make sure you get informed if one of my ebooks are on sale or if I’m doing a giveaway? The best way not to miss out is to join my free email newsletter.





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