If you listen to the Happier with Gretchen Rubin podcast, you’ve heard me mention the idea of “Happier Labor Day.”
In the United States, Labor Day falls on September 3 this year.
Labor Day celebrates the contributions and achievements of workers to the strength and prosperity of the country. It also unofficially marks the end of summer and the beginning of a new year (as I write about in Happier at Home, September is the other January).
This year, just as Valentine’s Day is a day to think about your romantic relationship, and New Year’s Day is a day to think about what you want to achieve in the upcoming year, try using Labor Day as a day to think about your own labor – your own work life.
How could you be happier, healthier, more productive, and more creative in your work life?
What do you want to accomplish in your upcoming year of work?
We can think about this issue at any time during the year of course – yes, Questioners, this is arbitrary – but I’ve found that something that can be done at any time is often done at no time.
We can think about what we could do better, what we might want to change, how we could grow, whether that’s to do a side hustle, write a spec script, go to a networking event, avoid the vending machines, update a resume and start looking for a new job.
It could be something as big as switching careers or something as mundane as cleaning out your desk.
For example, do you want to choose a one-word theme for your work aims? Last year, my theme was “Re-Purpose.”
If you could magically achieve one aim in your work life over the next year, what would it be? Would you magically learn a new software program, get a new boss, or switch careers?
In your work life, do you use a piece of technology or equipment that’s obsolete, but you haven’t pushed yourself to deal with the hassle of replacement? Want to check it off the list? Excellent tools make work so much easier and more pleasant.
Post your ideas, questions, reflections about using “Labor Day” as a catalyst here in the comments, or post to #HappierLaborDay, or leave a message at (774)277-9336 (77 HAPPY 336), or send an email or voice memo to podcast@gretchenrubin.
In the tumult of everyday life, it can be hard to find an occasion to step back and ask ourselves the big questions. Labor Day can be an opportunity to reflect.
Gretchen Rubin is the author of the #1 New York Times Bestseller The Happiness Project—an account of the year she spent test-driving the wisdom of the ages, current scientific studies, and lessons from popular culture about how to be happier—and the recently released Happier at Home and Better Than Before. On her popular blog, The Happiness Project, she reports on her daily adventures in the pursuit of happiness. For more doses of happiness and other happenings, follow Gretchen on Facebook and Twitter.
Image courtesy of Thought Catalog.