93 Best Gretchen Rubin Quotes on Happiness, Habits and Human Nature

Gretchen Rubin is a renowned writer and observer of human nature and happiness.

She has developed an ecosystem of products, including bestselling books, a podcast and an app to help people become happier, healthier and more creative.

She actively engages with her large, passionate audience across multiple platforms and is a sought-after speaker and media personality.

Originally a lawyer, Rubin found her passion for writing while working for Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor.


She has been interviewed by Oprah, dined with Daniel Kahneman and walked with the Dalai Lama. Rubin, raised in Kansas City, resides in New York with her family.

Here is a collection of the best quotes by Gretchen Rubin.

Best Gretchen Rubin Quotes


Do good, feel good; feel good, do good. ~ Gretchen Rubin.


I needed to change the lens through which I viewed everything familiar. ~ Gretchen Rubin.


Self-awareness is a key to self-mastery. ~ Gretchen Rubin.


The days are long, but the years are short. ~ Gretchen Rubin.


Money. It’s a good servant but a bad master. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

he biggest waste of time is to do something well that we need not do at all. ~ Gretchen Rubin.


No one regrets having changed a lightbulb. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

Forbearance is a form of generosity. ~ Gretchen Rubin.


Be a storehouse of happy memories. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

It’s easy to be heavy; hard to be light. ~ Gretchen Rubin.


Act the way you WANT to feel. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

Volunteering to help others is the right thing to do, and it also boosts personal happiness. ~ Gretchen Rubin.


Enthusiasm is more important to mastery than innate ability. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

You can choose what you do, you can’t choose what you like to do. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

Inspiring Gretchen Rubin Quotes

Keep in mind that to avoid loneliness, many people need both a social circle and an intimate attachment. Having just one of two may still leave you feeling lonely. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

The most reliable predictor of not being lonely is the amount of contact with women. Time spent with men doesn’t make a difference. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

One thing I teach people about is the one minute rule. The one minute rule is anything you can do in less than a minute, you go ahead and do it without delay. You don’t let yourself off the hook. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

Guard your children’s free time – from you. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

I am living my real life, this is it. Now is now, and if I waited to be happier, waited to have fun, waited to do the things that I know I ought to do, I might never get the chance. ~ Gretchen Rubin.


I can build a happy life only on the foundation of my own nature. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

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. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

Don’t let the perfect be the enemy of the good. Lower the bar. Actually spending ten minutes clearing off one shelf is better than fantasizing about spending a weekend cleaning out the basement. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

If you always use your stapler in one place, keep it there, instead of thinking that all the office supplies should go in one place. I’ve moved a lot of things around in my house because of that. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

We need to have intimate, enduring bonds; we need to be able to confide; we need to feel that we belong; we need to be able to get support, and just as important for happiness, to give support. We need many kinds of relationships; for one thing, we need friends. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

Inspirational Gretchen Rubin Quotes

I enjoy the fun of failure. It’s fun to fail, I kept repeating. It’s part of being ambitious; it’s part of being creative. If something is worth doing, it’s worth doing badly. ~ Gretchen Rubin.


The things that go wrong often make the best memories. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

Having a messy coat closet should not be a big deal in a full life, and yet there’s something about getting control of that coat closet that’s surprisingly satisfying. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

Never start a sentence with the words ‘No offense’. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

Happiness is a critical factor for work, and work is a critical factor for happiness. In one of those life-isn’t-fair results, it turns out that the happy outperform the less happy. Happy people work more hours each week – and they work more in their free time, too. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

When I thought about why I was sometimes reluctant to push myself, I realized that it was because I was afraid of failure – but in order to have more success, I needed to be willing to accept more failure. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

The more you know an individual, the more you understand human nature and the more you understand yourself. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

It’s important to help people notice patterns in themselves. Sometimes we don’t notice what our strengths are or even what we’re interested in. It helps when other people point them out. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

September is the other January. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

In the scope of a happy life, a messy desk or an overstuffed coat closet is a trivial thing, yet I find – and I hear from other people that they agree – that getting rid of clutter gives a disproportionate boost to happiness. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

I grasped two things: I wasn’t as happy as I could be, and my life wasn’t going to change unless I made it change. ~ Gretchen Rubin.


Don’t let the perfect be the enemy of the good. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

Famous Gretchen Rubin Quotes

Pouring out ideas is better for creativity than doling them out by the teaspoon. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

Flawed can be more perfect than perfection. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

One of the great joys of falling in love is the feeling that the most extraordinary person in the entire world has chosen you. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

Work harder to appreciate your ordinary day. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

One thing I realized about my happiness project is that I have to work on myself. I’m the only person whose actions and thoughts I can directly affect. It’s not useful to mull over my criticisms of the people around me. ~ Gretchen Rubin.


Outer order contributes to inner calm. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

Turn off your email; turn off your phone; disconnect from the Internet; figure out a way to set limits so you can concentrate when you need to, and disengage when you need to. Technology is a good servant but a bad master. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

Working is one of the most dangerous forms of procrastination. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

Enthusiasm is more important than innate ability, it turns out, because the single more important element in developing an expertise is your willingness to practice. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

Studies show that aggressively expressing anger doesn’t relieve anger but amplifies it. On the other hand, not expressing anger often allows it to disappear without leaving ugly traces. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

Look for happiness under your own roof. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

There is a preppy wabi-sabi to soft, faded khakis and cotton shirts, but it’s not nice to be surrounded by things that are worn out or stained or used up. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

Some kind of clutter is difficult – letting go of things with sentimental value, sifting through papers – but some clutter I find very refreshing to clear. I drive my daughters nuts because I’m always wandering into their rooms to clear clutter. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

Top Gretchen Rubin Quotes

One thing that surprised me was that as soon as I started to think about how to be happier, I realized how happy I was already. My appreciation for my life increased dramatically, once I examined it. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

If I give more to myself, I can ask more from myself. Self-regard isn’t selfish. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

Sometimes I succeed, sometimes I fail, but every day is a clean slate and a fresh opportunity. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

Negative emotions like loneliness, envy, and guilt have an important role to play in a happy life; they’re big, flashing signs that something needs to change. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

If I pretend to myself that I’m different from the way I truly am, I’m going to make choices that won’t make me happy. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

Technology is a good servant but a bad master. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

When we don’t get any treats, we feel depleted, resentful, and angry, and we feel justified in self-indulgence. We start to crave comfort – and grab that comfort wherever we can, even if it means breaking good habits. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

I have a lucky perfume. I love beautiful smells, but I save one of my favorite perfumes to wear only when I feel like I need some extra luck. ~ Gretchen Rubin.


Knowing what you admire in others is a wonderful mirror into your deepest, as yet unborn, self. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

Getting paperwork under control makes me feel more in control of my life generally. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

There are no do overs and some things just aren’t going to happen. It is a little sad but you just have to embrace what is. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

Self-measurement brings self-awareness, and self-awareness strengthens our self-control. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

What you do every day matters more than what you do once in a while. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

The absence of feeling bad isn’t enough to make you happy; you must strive to find sources of feeling good. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

Great Gretchen Rubin Quotes

I can DO ANYTHING I want, but I can’t DO EVERYTHING I want. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

We are happy when we are growing. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

Happiness comes not from having more, not from having less, but from wanting what you have. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

Habits are the invisible architecture of daily life. We repeat about 40 percent of our behavior almost daily, so our habits shape our existence, and our future. If we change our habits, we change our lives. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

One of the best ways to make yourself happy is to make other people happy. One of the best ways to make other people happy is to be happy yourself. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

Pay close attention to any flame of enthusiasm. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

The belief that unhappiness is selfless and happiness is selfish is misguided. It’s more selfless to act happy. It takes energy, generosity, and discipline to be unfailingly lighthearted. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

One of the best ways to make yourself happy in the present is to recall happy times from the past. Photos are a great memory-prompt, and because we tend to take photos of happy occasions, they weight our memories to the good. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

Popular Gretchen Rubin Quotes

Happiness is the meaning and purpose of life, the whole aim and end of human existence. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

Time waits for no ovary. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

I used to be very disciplined about only buying three books ahead of what I was reading, but my husband corrupted me, and now I’m dozens ahead of myself!. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

Now is now. Here is my treasure. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

I’m a creature of routine, and I hate feeling incompetent, so I avoided novelty and challenge. Making an effort to push myself in that way has brought me surprising boost. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

The First Splendid Truth: To be happy, I need to think about feeling good, feeling bad, and feeling right, in an atmosphere of growth. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

Nothing is more exhausting than the task that’s never started. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

He is my fate. He’s my soulmate. He pervades my whole existence. So, of course, I often ignore him. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

Habits are the invisible architecture of everyday life. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

We tend to overestimate what we can do in a short period, and underestimate what we can do over a long period. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

Behind our unremarkable front door waits the little world of our making – our home. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

Happy people make people happy, but I can’t make someone be happy, and no one else can make me happy. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

Being taken for granted is an unpleasant but sincere form of praise. Ironically, the more reliable you are and the less you complain, the more likely you are to be taken for granted. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

It’s the task that’s never started that’s more tiresome. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

Wise Gretchen Rubin Quotes

When you work regularly, inspiration strikes regularly. ~ Gretchen Rubin.


Enthusiasm is a form of social courage. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

Happiness is hard because it’s very subjective. I know the people that seem happiest to me, but whether they are actually – what they’re really like inside is really hard to say. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

We must exercise ourselves in the things which bring happiness, since, if that be present, we have everything, and, if that be absent, all our actions are directed toward attaining it. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

Remember that although the distinction can be difficult to draw, loneliness and solitude are different. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

Life is too short to save your good china or your good lingerie or your good ANYTHING for later because truly, later may never come. ~ Gretchen Rubin.

So these were the 93 top Gretchen Rubin quotes and sayings on habits and happiness.

If you like these quotes and sayings, then you can also read my other posts on Carol Dweck quotes and Greg Plitt quotes.

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Chandan Negi
Chandan Negi

I’m the Founder of Internet Pillar - I love sharing quotes and motivational content to inspire and motivate people - #quotes #motivation #internetpillar