Tranquility by Tuesday (Laura Vanderkam)

Is anyone else reading Tranquility by Tuesday and want to have a thread to talk about it?

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I’m not, but I can see if the library has it. I liked her earlier books that I read when I was still working

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I think there’s a lot in this one that could apply to people at different life stages!

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I bought it on release day, but haven’t actually read it yet!

I do follow Vanderkam’s blog/podcast occasionally and so I’m familiar with the “rules” and really like the Big Adventure, Little Adventure one. I also like looking at her seasonal bucket lists (on the blog) & how her kids get one on one adventures with a parent - as one of five kids myself, I definitely remember the specific times my parents were able to take me to a writing conference workshop or something really special hobby-wise.

The “one night for you a week” rule also reminds me of Eve Rodsky’s second book, Find Your Unicorn Space. She expands on her theme from Fair Play about how everyone needs (essentially) time for play/curiosity/pleasure.

As a neurodivergent person with a love/hate relationship with executive function scaffolding, I find the structural ideas really intriguing. I’m hoping to use the concepts as a jumping off point for my journaling/community building in 2023.


I have NEVER had a night to myself. I used to work late 1-2 nights per week, so that was as much as I wanted to be away from my kids… and nights are probably coming back in the next few months… so that might just not be one that I can implement. But when I get to that chapter I’ll think about ways I can adapt the concept.


Yeah, as a library person I know the evening/weekend demand can make participating in other stuff or finding extra time challenging!

I think the spirit of the rule is “how do you make time for yourself” and Vanderkam is pro hobby group commitment (hers is choir iirc). As an introvert I lean hard into “cuddle into a blanket/pillow pile with book and no disturbances, also please leave me totally alone in the house, thanks” vibes for self care!

For myself, a big issue is that I have trouble following through on stuff I want to do - I’m a classic Obliger (Gretchen Rubin 4 Tendencies style) who basically fakes motivation by adding responsibility to someone else (like promises to others, helping out my wife or future-me, structured volunteering). If it’s just for me & my pleasure alone it’s super hard to get started on something. Sometimes ticky box checkmarks and life design rules help a bit too though!


I especially like the “one big adventure, one little adventure” item, although I usually end up doing two little adventures instead (who has the time and energy for excursions of several hours?)


The pandemic and fertility treatment got me out of the habit of having any adventures, so I’m excited to get to that part and hopefully get inspired! LV has more kids than I do (she has 5!) but I have a baby and preteens, so I’m hoping for advice that will be relevant to my multi-age family!


I am struggling with bedtime. I want to have a bedtime. But all the usual things are getting in my way. I have older kids who don’t go to bed until after 9:00, but young enough that they want to spend the evening with me. I have a nursing baby so I have a lot of tasks to do before bed and I always underestimate how long they will take, and I also fall victim a little bit to the completing a list of tasks before bed rather than sticking to my bedtime. And then the next thing I know it is not 10:30 to 11:00, it is 11:30 or even later.