“Ancient philosophers and contemporary scientists agree: if there is one key to a happy life, it’s relationships… seeing people, staying in touch with people. This is a place where anything that you can do to make it easier is going to make a big pay off in your happiness.”
“It’s going to make you happier.”
Those are Gretchen Rubin‘s words on one of her recent podcast episodes of Happier, With Gretchen Rubin. After studying the concept of happiness for years at Yale, the author and speaker has cemented herself as one of the leading voices in how to lead a more fulfilled life.
And when it comes to female friendships – which, she says, women overwhelmingly focused upon when deciding their goals for 2018 – there’s a simple hack for making them stronger.
A standardised holiday.
Speaking with her sister, television screenwriter and producer Elizabeth Craft, Rubin explained that the best way to circumvent the hubbub of adult life is to pencil in a weekend of every year, and commit that time to going away with your dearest circle of friends. Because we’re all so busy in between conflicting work schedules, partners, and families, once a year it’s crucial that we take time out for our friendships.
The Mamamia Out Loud team discuss a list of ‘proper’ dinner party rules they couldn’t possibly hate more.
So, what is a standardised holiday?
What’s most important to remember is this: the date never changes. You simply decide on a weekend that suits everybody – say, Labour day weekend, Queen’s Birthday, or Easter – and build that into your calendar every year.
It’s something Gretchen’s own friends do, even those with remarkably busy work and family lives. It’s a tactic that has even worked for a group of doctors she knows.
“You know a year in advance what you’re going to be doing… and you might think, ‘Oh well, is that less fun’, but the fact is they’re all incredibly busy and yet year after year after year they’ve all managed to show up at the same place at the same time.