Life Hack for Getting Suddenly Awesome: Cheat on Your Significant Other, But Pick Up Your Socks

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Humans are incredibly bad predictors of what will make them happy.

That’s the central premise of the book Stumbling on Happiness by well-known author and psychologist Daniel Gilbert, and I must say, I agree with it wholeheartedly.

“The human being is the only animal that thinks about the future,” he says in the prologue. But, he continues, that doesn’t mean what we predict is right.

Did your significant other cheat on you recently? Do you think you’ll never get over it? Gilbert gives evidence that if you believe that, you’re wrong. Forgiving a cheat, if it was just a one-time occurrence, is, statistically speaking, much easier to do than forgiving someone who refuses to pick up his socks. That’s because, of course, you see the socks every. Darn. Day.

Makes sense, doesn’t it?

Gilbert’s conclusion and mine: Get better at outsmarting yourself. Figure out what about your relationship–and life in general–really upsets you. Then spend your time working on that instead of what you can, over time, let go of just fine.

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0 comments

  1. I’m going in a different direction here today, Mollie. Something you wrote struck a chord:
    “The human being is the only animal that thinks about the future,”

    Can’t recall when but within the next week or so I have a column going up on my blog about staying in the present moment. I’ll give you a brief sneak synopsis:
    It’s when we consider the future that we get anxious.
    Staying in the present moment is the only thing that brings us joy.

    Chris

  2. I would have such a difficult time forgiving and forgetting a spouse of close significant other who cheated on me. That being said, it would, of course, depend on a lot of things.
    The sock deal hits home because of a great problem between my second wife and myself over her refusing to pick up her many (many) shoes that she left scattered on the floor.
    Scott

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