H-Factor Where Is Your Heart

Pursuing Happiness? 5 Tools Every American Needs To Know About For Creating Personal Joy by Lisa Cypers Kamen

Rainbow womanThe Pursuit of Happiness is not a new endeavor.  As Time Magazine’s Jeffrey Kluger points out in his July 2013 story, the intent of happiness was written into our constitution, it was of such paramount importance that our founding fathers made a structured effort around its pursuit, and it has been interpreted in a 100 different ways since our Constitution’s publication.  In America, we have a unique opportunity to maximize a human quality that we take for granted-our ability to not only pursue happiness, but also to create our own joy.

Pursuing happiness infers that there is work involved-a personal responsibility to seek and carve a path to a state of bliss.  As with any pursuit, there is a plan, there are tools of managing the endeavor, there is an investment of time, there is a map, and finally there is the will to choose and accept the journey one is embarking on.

As with any journey of endurance, there might be setbacks, obstacles we did not count on, injuries that need healing, and a focus that needs redirecting.  These qualities are inherit in our emotional pursuit to not only being happy, but to live a joyful life regardless of the circumstances surrounding our physical adventure.  It is through the trials of unhappiness that we may find our transformation to personal growth.

As the country ponders what it means to physically be happy (the bigger car, the bigger house, the vacation, the newest electronic toy, the corner office, more money, etc. . .) I am addressing the necessary invisible tools of pursuing tangible happiness that changes perspectives, alters life focus, enhances daily life, and creates lasting human success.

Here are my top 5 tools for creating personal joy while in pursuit of happiness:

+ Seek Economic Success but Only as a Means to Provide What You Need, Not as a Tool for Joy: While it is important to live in one’s “happy place” it is not a requirement for creating more joy in the world.  America has, as many societies, based its collective ethos on materialism and acquisition.  Any society that does this is doomed for disappointment and eventual economic disaster. We have witnessed this in America during the past few years and are seeing the global fallout across Europe and other continents of Gordon Gecko’s mantra, “Greed is Good” in the film Wall Street.  As Americans, we are being given a fabulous opportunity in this new economic paradigm to re-frame the race for the biggest, best, most expensive, prettiest, and smartest prize. We once coveted financial capital and many of us now realize that it is the social and emotional intelligence that makes us healthier, wealthier and wiser.

+ Recognize Happiness Is An Inside Job: True joy is not for the faint of heart. In order to be happy, individuals must be willing to face adversity, discomfort and tragedy with grace and not be defined by it. Genuinely resilient people who present a strong sense of hope, optimism, and belief in life and themselves tend to be happier. I like to define true happiness as a dynamic state of being that comes from the alignment of our passion, purpose, place, and meaning in the world.  If we are without purpose (family, home, service), then we seek purpose in elements outside of our control.  Happiness comes from what we can control and how we decide to act.

+ Stop Blaming Others or Events For Your Un-Happiness: The pursuit of personal happiness is not an exclusive club. Bad things happen economically, personally, and physically, but we need not be defined by those events. In fact, when we use challenging circumstances as the jet-fuel or catalyst for positive growth and transformation, life automatically becomes richer, satisfying, and happier as a result, allowing us to develop attributes and strengths previously unknown-we pursue a purpose-our happiness.

+ Make A Conscience Choice to Seek Personal Happiness: Think of it this way, each of us has the absolute freedom to be happy and at the very same time, the liberty to be miserable. Abraham Lincoln once said that we are as happy as we choose to be so why not choose happiness? Can or will everybody be happy? No, simply because they make choices that do not support their upliftment and overall wellbeing. Again, my tagline in business and life is “Happiness is an inside job.” These words are powerful because they validate the concept of self-mastery and responsibility for our own lives and ultimate joy.

+ Fake It Until You Make It: We have often been told that our actions follow our emotions, but in reality it is the other way around, emotions will follow our actions. So the next time you are not feeling happy then go out in the world and create something happy. Offer a service to another, simplify your schedule for appointments of absolute importance, find a plant to nurture, be actively engaged in a good cause, if not for yourself then for someone else. Happiness is a natural reaction to unselfishness-it is a contagious emotion. And that is a contagion worth contracting.

Lisa Cypers Kamen is President of HarvestingHappiness.com and Director of 501 (c)(3) nonprofit organizationHH4Heroes.org (Harvesting Happiness for Heroes) which provides positive psychology coaching curriculum in PTSD management for wounded warriors, military spouses, caretakers, children and families of the fallen challenged with the invisible side effects of post combat life. 2013 International Positive Psychology Association and USC Guest Speaker, Happiness Expert, Author of Are We Happy Yet? Eight Keys To Unlocking A Joyful Life and Recent 2013 Florida Department of Citrus “Take On The Day” Wellness Campaign Spokesperson, and TEDxMalibu Organizer.

For  Interview please contact Carrie Hill at 757.621.9319 or contact@carriehillpr.com


Harvesting Happiness Talk Radio Welcomes Dr. Ellen Langer May 15th

Dr_Ellen_LangerEllen Langer is a Yale PhD, Harvard Professor of Psychology, and artist. She is the recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship and three Distinguished Scientist Awards, the World Congress Award, the NYU Alumni Achievement Award, and the Staats award for Unifying Psychology, and has authored eleven books and over 200 research articles on the illusion of control, perceived control, successful aging, decision-making, to name a few of the topics. Each of these is examined through the lens of her theory of mindfulness. Her research has demonstrated that by actively noticing new things—the essence of mindfulness—health, well being, and competence follow. Her best selling books include Mindfulness; The Power of Mindful Learning; On Becoming an Artist: Reinventing Yourself Through Mindful Creativity; and her most recent book, Counterclockwise: Mindful Health and the Power of Possibility. To learn more about Ellen and her work, visit: www.ellenlanger.com  

 Find your Happiness with Lisa Cypers Kamen every Wednesday at 9 am PST/12 pm EST on www.toginet.com/shows/harvestinghappiness ! For more information, visit Lisa’s websites, www.hh4heroes.orgwww.harvestinghappinesstalkradio.com , and http://harvestinghappiness.com 

Harvesting Happiness Talk Radio Welcomes Ira Israel and Dr. Richard Davidson April 10th

Ira_IsraelPsychotherapist Ira Israel is the author of “Mindfulness for Urban Depression DVD,” “Mindfulness Meditations for Anxiety DVD” and “Yoga for Depression and Anxiety DVD”.  Ira has Master of Arts degrees in Psychology, Religious Studies, and Philosophy.  He is a Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist, Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor, and  a Certified Yoga Therapist.

After completing his undergraduate degree at the University of Pennsylvania and taking a Master of Arts degree in Philosophy, Ira moved to Paris to study existentialism and aesthetics.  While exploring Asia, Ira became interested in Eastern philosophies, yoga, meditation, and Reiki healing – all of which led to taking a second Master of Arts degree in Buddhism, Hinduism, and Kabbalah. After continuing his studies and practices with myriad teachers and healers – as well as becoming a Registered Yoga Teacher 500, Certified Yoga Therapist, and Certified Reiki Practitioner – Ira decided to further his academic education with a Master of Arts degree in Clinical Psychology.

Dr._Richard_DavidsonRichard J. Davidson, PhD, is a renowned neuroscientist and one of the world’s leading experts on the impact of contemplative practices, such as meditation, on the brain. He is the founder and chair of the Center for Investigating Healthy Minds at the Waisman Center, University of Wisconsin-Madison.

He is perhaps best known for his groundbreaking work in studying emotion and the brain. A friend and confidante of the Dalai Lama, he is a highly sought after expert and speaker internationally. Time magazine named him one of the most influential people in the world in 2006.

Dr. Davidson has published hundreds of scientific papers and edited 14 books. A New York Times bestselling author, he has been featured widely in popular media, including ABC’s Nightline, National Public Radio, Time magazine, Newsweek, O, the Oprah magazine, PBS’s the Charlie Rose Show, Harvard Business Review, and many other national and international news outlets.

Dr. Davidson is the William James and Vilas Professor of Psychology and Psychiatry, Director of the Waisman Brain Imaging Lab and the Lab for Affective Neuroscience – all at the UW-Madison, where he has been a faculty member since 1984.

Find your Happiness with Lisa Cypers Kamen every Wednesday at 9 am PST/12 pm EST on www.toginet.com/shows/harvestinghappiness ! For more information, visit Lisa’s websites, www.hh4heroes.orgwww.harvestinghappinesstalkradio.com , and http://harvestinghappiness.com

Harvesting Happiness Talk Radio Welcomes Eric Handler of Positively Positive April 3rd

Eric_HandlerAn innovator in the field of personal growth and transformative thinking, Eric Handler is the co-founder of Positively Positive — an online multimedia platform known for its creative content designed to challenge readers to live a life worth sharing. Beginning as a Facebook page that quickly grew into a community of more than 1 million fans, the full platform was launched in October 2011 by Eric and his wife and business partner, Julie. Together they seek out the strongest voices and storytellers this world has to offer to inspire others to be present to the moment and live fully in the now. To learn more about Eric and his work, visit: www.positivelypositive.com

 Find your Happiness with Lisa Cypers Kamen every Wednesday at 9 am PST/12 pm EST on www.toginet.com/shows/harvestinghappiness ! For more information, visit Lisa’s websites, www.hh4heroes.orgwww.harvestinghappinesstalkradio.com , and http://harvestinghappiness.com

Harvesting Happiness Talk Radio Welcomes John C. Havens March 13th

jOHN_hAVENSJohn C. Havens is Founder of the H(app)athon Project, a contributing writer for Mashable, and author of,  H(app)y – The Value of Well-Being in a Digital Economy .The H(app)athon Project is an initiative that utilizes emerging technology to improve human well-being and drive positive social change. He is a former professional actor and current blues musician.

Find your Happiness with Lisa Cypers Kamen every Wednesday at 9 am PST/12 pm EST on www.toginet.com/shows/harvestinghappiness ! For more information, visit Lisa’s websites, www.hh4heroes.orgwww.harvestinghappinesstalkradio.com , and http://harvestinghappiness.com

Harvesting Happiness Talk Radio Welcomes Janice Kamenir-Reznik, Naama Haviv, and Julie Bram of Jewish World Watch March 6

Janice_Kamenir_ReznikJanice Kamenir-Reznik is Co-founder and President of Jewish World Watch (JWW), an organization she co-founded with Rabbi Harold Schulweis to mobilize Americans to fight against genocides and mass atrocities, and to provide relief and support to survivors.  Janice served as President of California Women Lawyers, President of the California Women’s Law Center, and as trustee of the Los Angeles County Bar and trustee of the California State Bar’s Trust Fund. Janice travels to the Darfuri refugee camps, and to the Democratic Republic of Congo to help JWW establish and fund various recovery and economic development projects in the eastern regions of the country. To learn more about Janice and her work, visit: www.jewishworldwatch.org

Naama_Haviv Naama Haviv, who holds an MA/ABD in Genocide Studies from Clark University, joined JWW’s team as Assistant Director. Naama develops and directs JWW’s policy objectives towards Sudan and Congo, manages JWW’s strategic partnerships both in the US and in Sudan, Chad, and Congo, and their program development including youth activist training initiatives and domestic education and advocacy programs. As well as researching current world conflicts to assess the risk of genocide. To learn more about Naama and her work, visit: www.jewishworldwatch.org

Julie_BramJulie Bram is a full time community volunteer and activist. As a founding partner and past chair of the Jewish Venture Philanthropy Fund she has been blessed to support and work with many remarkable non-profit organizations. Her passion lies in using education and communication to effect positive change in the world. (Tikkun olam) Julie currently serves on several advisory committees and boards of directors for a wide variety of charitable causes.  They include:

American Jewish Committee Los Angeles region.

The American Friends of Hand in Hand, a group dedicated to supporting five award winning schools in Israel that educate Israeli Arab and Jewish children together.

The Holy Land Democracy Project which strives to combat anti-Semitism by educating High School teachers and in turn their students about modern day Israel.

Hebrew Union College School of Jewish Non Profit Management, where Julie chairs its Mentor Program.

Jewish World Watch, an organization that fights against genocide and other atrocious human rights violations in Africa through education, advocacy, and refugee relief. To learn more about Julie and her work, visit: www.jewishworldwatch.org and www.walktoendgenocide.org

 Find your Happiness with Lisa Cypers Kamen every Wednesday at 9 am PST/12 pm EST on www.toginet.com/shows/harvestinghappiness ! For more information, visit Lisa’s websites, www.hh4heroes.orgwww.harvestinghappinesstalkradio.com , and http://harvestinghappiness.com

Harvesting Happiness Talk Radio Welcomes Sallie Culbreth, Patricia Lee Stotter, and BriGette McCoy February 27th

SallieHS2013Sallie Culbreth is the founder of Committed to Freedom – a non-profit organization that facilitates holistic empowerment and spiritual tools to help people move beyond abuse, exploitation, and sexual trauma, and provides adjunct services to helping professionals, agencies, and faith communities working with those who want to include spiritual concerns in their abuse recovery process. Her work and writings come from her personal experience of childhood sexual abuse and recovery. She holds a bachelor’s degree in pastoral ministries and a master’s degree in mental health counseling studies. She is a member of the American Psychological Association, American Association of Christian Counselors, and has received training in Critical Incidence Stress Management. She has authored several books and self-help workbooks and writes a weekly blog, Roadside Assistance.

Patricia_Stotter An Emmy Award winning composer and writer, Patricia Lee Stotter lends her tremendous talents in TV, film and social media to furthering awareness of PTSD and Veteran reintegration struggles. Stotter first became interested in Veteran issues while working on a theatre testimonial project that discussed suicide rates among Vietnam Veterans. She has since worked to bring awareness to Veteran issues through True Rep, a repertory company that explores trauma and resilience through testimonial theatre and film, and fosters collaboration among actors, writers and humane service organizations. Her recent documentary, Service: When Women Come Marching Home, highlights challenges facing female Veterans as they transition from active duty to civilian life. For more, visit http://servicethefilm.com/index.php

brigette_mccoyBriGette McCoy served in the US Army from 1987 to 1991 and became an E4, communications specialist with top secret clearance. Since leaving the service she has had a variety of jobs including medical claims processor, insurance underwriter, bank card specialist and mortgage originator. Suffering from a back injury incurred while in the army and from the hidden disability of MST that got so out of control she lost my job and her house and ended up homeless with two children. She couldn’t get help until she understood what was wrong and that didn’t happen until she found the website VETS WOW. Through the women vets she met on line, she learned about MST and PTSD and with their support, was able to seek help at the VA.

This week we are busy promoting our upcoming event in Hot Springs, Arkansas that will take place on March 7th. Harvesting Happiness for Heroes, Committed to Freedom, and Service, the film, When Women Coming Marching Home are hitting the airwaves and Social Media to raise awareness about Military Sexual Trauma and Assault perpetrated from within the US Military. The funds raised at this event will be reinvested within the state of Arkansas to provide workshops jointly facilitated by HH4Heroes and CTF for Servicewomen challenged by MST/MSA and Post-Traumatic Stress (PTS). I want to encourage you to be part of this revolutionary new program in many ways by getting the word out, attending the screening of SERVICE if you are local or making a small donation that will underwrite a woman Vet in need of healing. To learn more about these issues and what we are up to take a look at my recent blog posting in the Huffington Post.


 Find your Happiness with Lisa Cypers Kamen every Wednesday at 9 am PST/12 pm EST on www.toginet.com/shows/harvestinghappiness ! For more information, visit Lisa’s websites, www.hh4heroes.orgwww.harvestinghappinesstalkradio.com , and http://harvestinghappiness.com