Thursday, August 22, 2013

Ginny's Happiness Camp

Here is an update about what Ginny Sassaman in Vermont is doing!

“People are just as happy as they make up their minds to be.”
― Abraham Lincoln

Well, it’s not quite that simple – but the intention to be happy is a fundamentally important starting point.  This fall, Robin Cornell and Ginny Sassaman -- two experienced, compassionate, knowledgeable, and fun Happiness Coaches -- invite you to bring your intention to be happier and join us for a six week study group designed to cultivate greater well being and contentment.

We are pleased to once again team up and provide this opportunity to learn happiness deep in your bones and create your own unique long term happiness plan.  During our premiere study group this summer, the conversations have been profound, thought provoking,funnyinspiringand transformational.  The new group forming in October will no doubt experience a similar journey.

Using The How of Happiness by Sonja Lyubomirsky as our guide, we will explore 14 areas proven to significantly enhance personal happiness:

  Gratitude    Optimism   Avoiding over thinking   Acts of kindness   Nurturing relationships    Coping strategies  Forgiveness   Increasing flow   Savoring life   Practicing religion and/or spirituality   Meditation   Physical activity  Acting happy * Commitment to goals

Ginny and Robin will facilitate safe and meaningful happiness activities and discussions.  You’ll leave each session with strategies you can try at home.   At the end of this study group, you’ll have the knowledge to choose what strategies work best for you.  Your coaches will help ensure your plan for happiness is right for you.

Timing: We’ll meet Tuesday evenings, 6:00 to 8:00 in Montpelier, from October 1st through November 5th.  

Cost: $135 for all six sessions.  15% discount if you register by September 15th.   To register, send your payment ($120 with the discount) to Ginny Sassaman, PO Box 191, Calais, Vermont, 05648.

What You’ll Need: You’ll need your own copy of the book, “The How of Happiness,” along with an open heart and an open mind.   We’ll let you know each week which chapters to read in advance of our gathering.

Study Group Leaders:   Robin Cornell is a holistic educator, guide, and catalyst for transforming pain and limitations into empowering possibilities. She is a Certified Laughter Yoga Leader, Certified Happiness Coach, Licensed Spiritual Counselor and Holistic Healthcare Practitioner d.b.a. Universal Rivers of Life and has been in practice for 35 years. 

Prior to co-founding Gross National Happiness USA and creating the Happiness Paradigm, Ginny Sassaman earned a Masters in Mediation from Champlain College where she is a staff member in the mediation department.  She has earned certificates in “The Philosophy and Psychology of Happiness” and “How Positive Psychology Changes Lives.”  She has led happiness workshops in Seattle, Bar Harbor, Florida, North Carolina, and Central Vermont; and has delivered sermons to four Unitarian Universalist congregations on the moral imperative of happiness in light of climate change.  Ginny also leads creativity and women’s retreats, and has a private mediation practice. 

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

A Happiness Initiative Board Member's Trip to South Sudan

Here is a report about the trip our board member, Jim Bradbury, PhD, is taking to South Sudan next week:

My plan is to arrive in Juba, capitol of South Sudan, about September 1 and be in the country for 12 days with an excursion to the southern part for about four days in the middle of that period.

 I will be traveling and working with Christopher Douglas, a frequent visitor to South Sudan;  he manages a group that works directly with cooperatives and entrepreneurs in the Equatoria states connecting them with training, equipment, investors, and markets related

Despite a few remaining uncertainties my trip to South Sudan is still on track.  I plan to arrive in Juba on September 1, spend about four days there, travel to  Kajo Keji in Central Equatoria for about four to goods produced for local use but with export potential  to East Africa, Europe, and the U.S.  At this stage  facilitating honey production through a women's cooperative in Kajo Keji and preparing for installation of small weather stations throughout  the region are scheduled. 
My main objectives are to promote science and technology education, through discussions and seminars at the University of Juba, with a view toward contributing to sustainable progress in agroforestry, public health, and energy production. I have arranged meetings with some faculty and students at the University of Juba, a few government officials, and USAID staff.  Examples of topics include new internet-based educational tools, microgrids for rural energy needs, geophysical mapping through GIS systems,  improved weather forecasting for better planting information and estimating likelihood of mosquito-borne diseases. In the larger context, of course, trying to generate a little international goodwill through science-based diplomacy.

-- Wishing happy and safe travels to Jim.
(Wondering where South Sudan is?)