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3 mins

Simplify Joy: Ingrid Fetell Lee on Making Our Own Joy

In today’s Simplify Episode, Caitlin chats with author Ingrid Fetell Lee to enlighten us about how things like color, nature and play can bring us more joy.
by Ines Bläsius | Oct 10 2019

As it turns out, finding moments of joy in your daily life may be simpler than you’d think. By transforming the spaces around us, we also have the power to transform our own emotional wellbeing.

In this week’s Simplify episode, Ingrid Fetell Lee shares with Caitlin the insights that she has gained throughout her years as a designer and in researching what factors bring joy to our lives.

Find out how color brought life back into a struggling city, how you might be able to cheer up a loved one in the hospital, and how to set up a meeting at work to bring more energy and positivity into the room.

“But the reality is, I think, you know, from all of the research that I’ve studied, I mean hundreds of studies on this topic, that little moments of joy are much more powerful than we give them credit for. And so stopping to play for 30 seconds, or stopping by the dog park on your way to work and just watching the, you know, the dogs play, or, you know, doing a happy dance, I mean, you talked about celebration and I think that is a thing that really gets overlooked in adult life. You know, research shows that those things can actually unlock something much deeper.”
Ingrid Fetell Lee

Most, if not all of us, could use more joy in our lives. In this episode, Ingrid Fetell Lee shares some of the reasons why we often overlook and undervalue the very things that could help us on that quest. Better yet, you’ll hear some very concrete and actionable ways in which you can make any space- whether it be your home, your workplace, or even a hospital room- more joyful for yourself and others.

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Who’s Ingrid Fetell Lee?

Ingrid Fetell Lee is a designer and the author of Joyful: The Surprising Power of Ordinary Things to Create Extraordinary Happiness. She has worked as the design director of IDEO, created the popular website The Aesthetics of Joy, and given a TED Talk entitled, “Where Joy Hides and How to Find It”, which has racked up over 17 million views.

Her work focuses on the ways in which the spaces that we live, work, and spend time in affect our psychology and emotional wellbeing. In sharing her expertise, Fetell Lee has helped large organizations such as Target, Pepsico, Kate Spade- and even the U.S. Government!- as well as her individual readers, make changes that bring more joy into their daily lives.

Ingrid Fetell Lee’s Recommended Read

Written by two of Ingrid Fetell Lee’s former colleagues, No Hard Feelings embraces the notion that the workplace is just as emotional as any other in your life. From this perspective, they guide us through useful ways to make our emotions a collaborator at work rather than a competitor.

Extra Credit Reading

If you would like to dive deeper into some of the topics Ingrid Fetell Lee covers in this Simplify episode, check out this book list composed by Ben and Caitlin.

This book explores an influential but surprising factor that has shaped historical events and our modern world: play. While many traditional history books highlight wars, and treaties, and rulers as the key to understanding how momentous decisions were made, Johnson argues that pleasure and play should not be overlooked.

Bestselling author and influential philosopher Alain de Botton delves into the ways in which buildings and design impact our wellbeing and, in some cases, have the ability to bring out the best in us. This book answers many of our unasked questions for why we design things the way that we do, and how those designs affect us.

Geneticist, PhD, philosopher, and Buddhist monk, Matthieu Ricard, examines our need to care for others—a compulsion that is essential in both humans and animals. These blinks explain how and why caregivers do what they do through the lens of philosophy, economics and evolutionary theory.

A classic in the world of design, this book examines the ways in which designers attempt to create innovative and thoughtful products, while facing social, moral, and ecological challenges. Papanek reveals that good design can be inspired and not impeded by facing these factors head on.

What’s Simplify?

Simplify is a podcast for anybody who’s taken a close look at their habits, their happiness, their relationships, or their health and thought “There’s got to be a better way to do this.” We talk to bestselling writers, productivity wizards, sex geniuses, and happiness experts to find it for you.

Simplify is made with love by Blinkist. Click here to try Blinkist free for 14 days with the voucher code: joyful

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Talk to us!

We want to hear from you! Drop a line to us at podcast@blinkist.com about whatever tickles your fancy.

If you want to say hi to Ben and Caitlin in the meantime, you can find them on Twitter: @bsto and @CaitlinSchiller.

Who made this?

Your hosts are Caitlin Schiller and Ben Schuman-Stoler.

Research and production assistance by Ines Bläsius, sound and editing by Florian Tippe.

Gorgeous new music by the one and only Odysseas Constantinou.

Got links?

Ingrid Fetell Lee’s Website

Read the transcript here!

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