Gretchen Rubin – On How Your Tendencies Impact Your Productivity

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This week on Detail Therapy with Amy Landino, Gretchen Rubin joins the show!

(0:00) 99 Designs

(1:32) Teaser & what to expect from today’s chat

(2:32) Welcome | AmyTV

(2:48) Amy’s on vacation!! | Instagram

(3:37) Gretchen Week & Amy’s Birthday Week #SHINESQUAD | Pre-chat

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INTERVIEW WITH GRETCHEN RUBIN

Amy sits down today, alongside her two best friends, with her productivity idol Gretchen Rubin. Gretchen is a best-selling author of 5 books including one of Amy’s favorites, the Happiness Project and her most recent Outer Order Inner Calm, host of the podcast, Happier with Gretchen Rubin, Happiness Project founder and productivity & mindset champion.

(6:13) Why do you do what you do?
”I am fascinated by the question of human nature.”

(6:40) Gretchen’s Books
Happier At Home
Better Than Before
The Happiness Project
The Four Tendencies
Outer Order, Inner Calm

(7:00) Amy, Sara & Jesse’s brunch habit with The Four Tendencies

(7:28) When did you realize you were a writer?
”Gradually then all at once.”

(9:00) From law work to moving to New York

(10:12) Gretchen’s summary of the Four Tendencies | Quiz - How you respond to accountability (outer & inner)
Upholders - “Discipline is my freedom.”
Questioners - “I’ll comply if you convince me why.”
Obligers - “You can count on me and I’m counting on you to count on me.”
Rebels - “You can’t make me and neither can I.”

(15:28) Outer accountability | “Ginger the dog”

(16:20) Not to the wise | Take the quiz according to the directions! | Take the quiz AND read the book.

(20:33) All tendencies have strengths and weaknesses. There are no bad tendencies.

(21:41) Alyssa Mastromonaco Interview

(22:18) Do you adjust how you talk to/work with different tendencies?

(23:25) Is there something questioners can do to manipulate their own thought to do something they’re reluctant to do?

(25:30) Sara’s questions: Relationships
From the start with certain tendencies would you give relationship advice for complimentary tendencies?
Sara & Hubby: Upholder & Obliger
Difficult pairing example: Rebel & Upholder
Being Late = Catastrophic for an upholder | Build margin time into your schedule “We’ll arrive between 4 and 4:30.”

(31:36) Tightening: When the rules get tighter.
Don’t get caught in the “who is right and who is wrong” game.

(33:33) Has there ever been a time that you wanted to add a 5th accountability?
Short answer, no.

(35:02) Jesse’s Questions
Better Than Before, about habit change, great book for obligers!
People don’t always understand that certain things work with one tendency and not with another.
”I’m not broken, I’m an obliger.”
”You don’t need to change, it’s what you do with what you are.”

(37:43) Obliger-Obliger Marriage, Jesse and Scotty (husband) took the quiz and then “5 minutes later” they were buying a house. What happened? Jesse said “Scotty, I trust you.”

(39:35) For an Obliger, a spouse or children are so close to a person they become an inner expectation.

(41:27) Love Languages Quiz | Words & Acts of Service
”If you define me you can find me.”

(43:48) Tightening | Can’t use My Fitness Pal

(46:38) Outer Order, Inner Calm | Do you feel this book is better received by different tendencies?
Happiness Boosters:
Have a pair of scissors in every room.
Put a trash can in the closet.
Make it fun to get it done - good for Rebels

(49:51) The Details | What is your morning routine? What do you drink in the morning?
Mayo Clinic says 8 glasses of water has no basis for the average person.

(52:56) Morning Routine
6 am Wakeup, every day
Dog walk
Cup of coffee & diet coke
Email
Husband & Daughter catch up
Walk in central park (Yoga or HIIT)
Scrambled Egg Breakfast at 9 am
Kick-off the work day

(54:44) How do you manage your tasks?
Calendar and To-Do Lists (time blocking, batching, writing time)

(56:46) What have you been reading lately?
Conversations with Friends
The Mars Room
Marking
Small Fry
Reading for pleasure on work trips | Pairing - “The only way I can X is if I Y.”

(59:21) What do you outsource?
Assistant for calendar management
Dog Walker for longer walks
Does not cook: grocery shopping, Fresh Direct

(1:02:55) What does it mean to go after the life you want?

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(01:03:34) Detail Recap:

  • Find the hack, especially for those who need outer accountability. Leverage it and ask for help, even if it’s from the dog.

  • Note for/about upholders: small population, they may struggle with tightening, but they also go through a rebellion.

  • Your spouse/significant other becomes an internal accountability source. When looking at your accountability sources realize that those close to you may be too close to be considered outer accountability.
     

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