When I started the Happines Project, I vowed to work on dressing better. Day in and day out, I wear jeans and running shoes, or khakis and running shoes, or yoga pants and running shoes, usually with a long-sleeved, v-neck white t-shirt (the t-shirt is another story).
I had vague dreams of dressing in attractive, grown-up outfits and tried to make a shift, but somehow I could never change.
I know, “Be Gretchen,” but I thought it would be nice to be a slightly more nicely dressed Gretchen.
Finally, I remembered to apply one of my Twelve Commandments (see lefthand column): Identify the problem.
What was the problem? Why did I never want to dress more nicely?
Answer: because I do a lot of walking every day, and always try to walk more whenever possible, so I like to wear comfortable shoes.
This should have been obvious, but somehow it wasn’t. Once I identified the problem, I realized I had to decide between a conflict in priorities: more walking or more fashion?
I choose more walking, almost every day. Now that I see running shoes as an expression of a choice, instead of a sign of a lack of style, I don’t care about upgrading my look.
Yesterday I did need to dress up a bit, so I wore flat loaders with a proper outfit. For most people, I realize, loafers count as comfortable shoes. Let me say that NOTHING beats running shoes.
By the time my day was over, I felt far more tired and footsore than I usually do.
So, if you’re feeling exhausted at the end of the day, if your feet and legs ache, if you feel drained from daily life, try switching shoes.
Obviously, many people don’t have an option to wear running shoes all day. But if you could wear running shoes, but don’t, give it a shot. I predict you will get a serious happiness boost.
I like to cruise around the many great blogs that deal with the subject of productivity, or as it’s often called, GTD, “Getting Things Done.” I’ve gotten great ideas and inspiration from blogs like Zen Habits, Dumb Little Man, and Getting Things Done. They often manage to be funny as well as useful, always a plus.