Over the past decade, research psychologists have turned their attention to the art and science of happiness. What is happiness? How do we develop the kind of joy that is deep and sustainable? And with so much suffering in the world, is it selfish to focus on personal happiness?
Here’s what the research shows: After basic human needs are met, only 10% of happiness depends on life circumstances—like a move to a new part of the country, a better-paying job, or a change in your appearance. These things may temporarily boost contentment, but they are rarely long lasting. Instead, your sustainable joy, zest, and well-being depend on:
- Knowing and respecting yourself—your authenticity, feelings, strengths, and purpose
- Learning how to practice optimism, kindness, forgiveness, and gratitude
- Feeling safe with and connected to the people in your life—at work, at home, and in community
- Actively helping others—happy people are more likely to help others, and helping others makes us happier
In this workshop—geared especially for women (also open to men)—we focus on these four components for happiness. On Saturday, we join two of America’s most celebrated authors and teachers, Geneen Roth and Brené Brown, whose life work is about helping women heal and strengthen themselves—body, mind, and spirit. On Sunday, we learn about the power of resilience in the face of suffering, and gain skills for being agents of hope in the world.
Women Food and God
For 30 years, Geneen Roth has been writing and teaching about the charged relationship between food and women’s inner lives. Her deeply compassionate and insightful approach has revolutionized the way women can perceive and overcome lifelong battles with food, body image, dieting, and weight. The author of the international best seller Women Food and God and eight other books, Roth teaches the tools of inquiry, body-sensing, meditation, and her brilliant eating guidelines that you can use to change your relationship with food and discover a happiness that pervades your life. geneenroth.com
Brené Brown, PhD, LMSW
The Anatomy of Joy
Brené Brown, PhD, LMSW, is a research professor at the University of Houston Graduate College of Social Work. Her groundbreaking work on vulnerability, shame, courage, and authenticity has been featured on PBS, NPR, and CNN, and was the subject of two 2010 TEDx talks. Brown is the author of several books, including the best-selling The Gifts of Imperfection. She guides us as we navigate feelings of scarcity, explore the power of worthiness, and experience the critical relationship between joy and gratitude. brenebrown.com
Beyond Surviving to Thriving
One Woman’s Journey to Peace & Joy
Loung Ung is a survivor of the killing fields of Cambodia, one of the bloodiest episodes of the 20th century. The author of the award-winning memoirs, First They Killed My Father and Lucky Child, she is an international human rights activist. Her new book, Lulu in the Sky: A Daughter of Cambodia Finds Love, Healing, and Double Happiness, is being released in April 2012. Loung shares how a child of war became a woman who has found healing, joy, and a life of meaning and service. loungung.com
Gretchen Steidle Wallace
Finding Meaning & Happiness in the Act of Serving Others
Gretchen Steidle Wallace is the founder of Global Grassroots, which provides mind-body trauma healing, conscious leadership skills, and social entrepreneurship training to help the world’s most vulnerable women become agents of change. In an interactive session, she teaches you how to discover your authentic power and use it to help others. Come away ready to make a difference! globalgrassroots.org
Leslie Salmon Jones
Leslie Salmon Jones, creator of Afro Flow Yoga™, is a professional dancer, wellness coach, and certified holistic personal trainer. Throughout the Women & Happiness workshop, she guides us through gentle stretches and energizing movement, helping us embrace our physicality as a vital component of happiness. afroflowyoga.com
Elizabeth Lesser and Carla Goldstein help create community and guide you through each day of the Women & Happiness workshop, weaving together the many strands of information and inspiration.
September 2012 Launch Preview
Omega Women’s Leadership Center
April 21, 7:00 p.m.–8:00 p.m.
Join Elizabeth Lesser, Carla Goldstein, Sarah Peter, Sharon Salzberg and guests for this special preview event. Dedicated to our bedrock belief that women’s leadership can and will change the world for the better, the Omega Women’s Leadership Center will launch in September 2012. Join us for inspiration, wine, desserts, and music by ¡Retumba!, followed immediately by Geneen Roth’s keynote talk at 8:00 p.m. All participants of Women & Happiness are invited.