Does Blogging Make You Happier?
Gretchen Craft Rubin is the best-selling author of The Happiness Project and Happier at Home. Her latest book is titled Better Than Before: Mastering the Habits of Our Everyday Lives.
She has an enormous readership, both in print and online, and her books have sold more than two million copies worldwide, in more than thirty languages. On her weekly podcast Happier with Gretchen Rubin, she discusses good habits and happiness with her sister Elizabeth Craft. Rubin started her career in law and was clerking for Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor when she realized she wanted to be a writer. She lives in New York City with her husband and two daughters.
Question: Does interacting with readers on your blog make you happier or less happy?\r\n
Gretchen Rubin: Having my blog has given me such a gigantic engine of happiness. I just can’t even imagine life now without my blog. So, I love my blog. I’m really lucky because I have amazing leadership. I see some of the comments that other blogs get and it seem like all the smart, nice, interested, engaging people are over on my blog because I have an excellent community of people who really are – really have a lot to say and a lot to add by **** huge amount about happiness and just how these things play out in different people’s lives. That’s been a gigantic benefit.\r\n
The thing about a blog and about a book is it’s a very different kind of writing. The blog is wonderful when you just have a 300-500 idea. Just one idea that you want to get out there. And I also like writing a blog because I skip around. One day I’m interested in loneliness, one day I’m interested in unconsciousness over claiming, another day I’m interested in how to keep yourself cheerful if you lost your dog. And so I can move around very easily and take advantage of interesting things that maybe would be a whole chapter in a book, but are interesting and thought provoking ideas.\r\n
A book is a better way to develop a complicated idea, or to tell a big story and to show how ideas weave in and out of each other, which is something that comes up a lot in happiness because all these ideas are interconnected. So, the blog is good for that quick hit, that quick idea, and I love the reader engagement, and then the book allows me to take these ideas and really develop them at much greater length and to tell longer stories. Somebody told me though that they thought the blog was more about process and the book was more about outcome because they’re sort of a more reflective attitude that you have when writing the book because it’s more coherent, it’s more pulled together, it’s more thematically organized and it’s certainly more edited. A blog is something that, everyday there’s a new thing and that’s part of the fun of it, you’re just constantly moving forward. A book really gives you more time to reflect and think hard on things very, very deep.
Recorded on February 16, 2010
Interviewed by Austin Allen
The "Happiness Project" author on the difference between book writing and blogging, and whether interacting with Internet commenters brightens or darkens her day.
In a breakthrough for nuclear fusion research, scientists at China's Experimental Advanced Superconducting Tokamak (EAST) reactor have produced temperatures necessary for nuclear fusion on Earth.
- The EAST reactor was able to heat hydrogen to temperatures exceeding 100 million degrees Celsius.
- Nuclear fusion could someday provide the planet with a virtually limitless supply of clean energy.
- Still, scientists have many other obstacles to pass before fusion technology becomes a viable energy source.
Military recruits are supposed to be assessed to see whether they're fit for service. What happens when they're not?
- During the Vietnam War, Robert McNamara began a program called Project 100,000.
- The program brought over 300,000 men to Vietnam who failed to meet minimum criteria for military service, both physically and mentally.
- Project 100,000 recruits were killed in disproportionate numbers and fared worse after their military service than their civilian peers, making the program one of the biggest—and possibly cruelest—mistakes of the Vietnam War.
The 116th Congress is set to break records in term of diversity among its lawmakers, though those changes are coming almost entirely from Democrats.
- Women and nonwhite candidates made record gains in the 2018 midterms.
- In total, almost half of the newly elected Congressional representatives are not white men.
- Those changes come almost entirely from Democrats; Republican members-elect are all white men except for one woman.
SMARTER FASTER trademarks owned by The Big Think, Inc. All rights reserved.