Lean towards joy and listening and away from giving advice.

Kelye Rouse-Brown with friend on beach

This was a great headliner to learning about positivity and happiness in An Introduction to Positive Psychology with Dr. Maria Sirois in beautiful Berkshires, MA. My oldest and dearest friend joined me and now we make an effort to fill our happy bucket year after year, like earlier in May when we celebrated our milestone birthdays together in Rhode Island. We savored the crashing water against the rocks along the cliff walk and enjoyed the historical mansions.

Another magical time in the month of May was my first hot air balloon ride that took my breath away with more special gems in my life. We just floated in the air and didn’t even feel the take-off, much different than my usual airplane rides. The pilot was so cool, it was like being carried away with the great Oz from the Wizard of Oz. I fell in love with Santé Fe, NM on a higher level. It seems when you take the time to plan for happy events, they will happen… the sky’s the limit, and life can be more joyful.  

What happy events do you have planned?

Positive psychology was referred to as the scientific study of optimal human functioning and officially launched as a field in 1998. Dr. Tal Ben-Shahar was highly talked about at the retreat and he first taught a seminar at Harvard on this fairly new topic in 2002 with eight students enrolled and two dropped out. The objective of the class was what psychology can teach us about leading happier, more fulfilling lives. The following year the class went public and 380 students signed up. The evaluations showed the class improved the quality of one’s life. Well, the next time the class was offered it grew to 855 students enrolled, which made it the largest class at Harvard University.

What education class are you most looking forward to learn, grow, and feel happier?

There are many definitions for both positive psychology and the science of happiness, but the simple answer is that positive psychology is a subset within the broader field we call the science of happiness. Positive Psychology focuses largely on the study of positive emotions and the science of happiness focuses on areas such as exercise and psychological well-being.

Kelye and Valorie BurtonThe topic is very popular and soon after our retreat in the Berkshires, my next education event followed up with more Positive Psychology and I was introduced to Valorie Burton, Founder of the Coaching and Positive Psychology (CaPP) Institute. I loved her spirit and presentation. One of my favorite parts of her presentation was her happiness boosters. You might consider taking her online happy woman test by going to happywomantest.com and find out your top triggers to boost your happiness. It only takes about 10 minutes and you will learn your happiness quotient that you can focus on for improvement over time. For example, anticipation is great when you have something to look forward to, like a trip to Rhode Island with an old girlfriend or a flight like no other. Here are Valorie Burton’s 13 happiness boosters:

  • Play
  • Purpose
  • Gratitude
  • Savoring
  • Relaxation
  • Flow
  • Service
  • Smile
  • Connection
  • Movement
  • Winning Words
  • Financial Savvy
  • Anticipation

What happiness boosters are you most satisfied with?  What would you like more of?

After taking the happiness test, some of my top boosters were gratitude, smile, and service. These and more will be discussed further at my upcoming Be You series session, Be Positive, on August 30th at Brewer’s Alley. Come join us and be reminded to pause and savor life’s joys. I look forward to sharing a happy retreat with you!


Today’s author: Kelye Rouse-Brown, CHA, CHT is a business owner, joint venture partner, HR expert, certified coach, and training professional. Her 3 components: Educate, Motivate, and Cultivate help her clients develop, spark action, and grow a successful career/business and life from the core. Kelye can be reached at 301-371-9300 or by visiting her website: krbtrainingsolutions.com