371: A Talk with Matt Damon! And a Complaint-Free Month and Hack for Photo Albums.

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Try This At Home

Observe a complaint-free month — Elizabeth and I are going complaint-free starting on April 1. We got this idea from writer Kathryn Schulz. In episode 369, when we interviewed her about her memoir Lost & Found, she told us that she had given up complaining for Lent. 

Happiness Hack 

In episode 367, I mentioned creating physical photo albums and hand-writing captions on each page. A listener decided to make her own albums, and she asked her children to send their favorite photos to include. 

Interview: Matt Damon and Gary White

Matt Damon is the superstar Oscar-winning actor, producer, and screenwriter known for roles like the Bourne IdentityGood Will HuntingSaving Private Ryan, The Talented Mr. Ripley, The Martian, The Departed, Ocean’s 11Contagion, and Stillwater. Gary White is the internationally recognized water and sanitation expert and leader who has received numerous awards and honors; for instance, he made Time’s list of the “100 most influential people.” Together they co-founded two nonprofits, Water.org and WaterEquity, to address the global water and sanitation crisis. They’ve just published their book The Worth of Water: Our Story of Chasing Solutions to the World’s Greatest Challenge (AmazonBookshop). We talk about subjects such as…

  • how each of them was drawn to the cause of water — their “moment of obligation”
  • how lack of access is at the root of so many societal challenges
  • how they met (their “meet cute,” as they call it in the book)
  • why their organizations are aimed at building and scaling market-based financial solutions
  • how it’s hard to keep the world’s attention on the issue
  • how they’ve learned from their failures
  • what an individual can do to help (for one thing, all proceeds from The Worth of Water go to Water.org)

Matt Damon’s Try This at Home
: In your morning shower, turn the temperature to cold. It will wake you up—and you’ll use less water. Gary White’s Try This at Home: Pause to feel grateful for the miracle of easy access to clean water. 

Demerits & Gold Stars

  • Gretchen’s Demerit: On spring break, I didn’t take enough photos.
  • Elizabeth’s Gold Star: She gives a gold star to her husband Adam and herself, because they started dog-training class.


  • I just reached the 16th anniversary of my blog. Hard to believe! Each week, I publish new articles and interviews. If you’d like to get this content delivered directly to your inbox each week,  sign up for blog update emails here.
  • Want to clear clutter consistently? Join me for Desk-Clearing Bingo on Fridays. Gamifying this task makes it more fun. Head over to Twitter or Instagram (@gretchenrubin) to play along.

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