Being an entrepreneur can be highly stressful. Whether you’re dealing with the day-to-day challenges of being your own boss, maintaining a back-breaking schedule, or trying to stay focused despite never-ending issues (if it can go wrong, it will go wrong) — it’s easy to lose sight of the present, stress, and exude negative emotions.
So what’s an entrepreneur to do?
The gratifying part is we can rewire our brains to enjoy a much happier and fulfilling life. At Activating Happy, attendees will learn how to apply simple strategies from practical brain science. The benefits are exponential: stressing less, achieving more and being healthier in the process.”
- Break out of that negative feedback loop.
- Switch off mind chatter and be present in the moment
- Love yourself
- Play on the upside of negative emotions.
- Rewire your brain to feel happy, and confident during positive experiences and how to cope during stressful times
Brad Pendergraft: LCSW, Therapist, Coach, Teacher of Neuroscience
Carol Gardner: Speaker/author/creator of Zelda Wisdom
Dr. Larry Sherman: Professor / Neuroscientist At OHSU
Linda Negrin: Certified Pranic Healing® Instructor / Energy Medicine Practitioner
Lisa Schroeder: Executive Chef and Owner of Mother’s Bistro & Bar
Suzanne Jauchius: Intuitive consultant
Read on to learn about the inspiration behind Activating Happy:
What inspired Activating Happy?
I was hiking one day and thinking, “What is it that everyone wants? What is it that I want?” And, I immediately thought, “Everyone wants to be happy.” We need to start “Activating Happy.” I got back to my office, checked domain names and lo and behold that was available (Rarely is a domain name available!). I also loved the acronym AH! I took that as a “sign” and knew I must move forward on Activating Happy.
Why do this now?
There’s a bit of a backstory. I went through a challenging time in my life about 4 years ago when both my parents passed away within 4 months of each other. I was less than happy, even though I had a wonderful life, family and profession. At that time, I had the great fortune of meeting Brad Pendergraft, a teacher of neuroscience who mentored me on how the brain works and provided strategies to alleviate stress. This provided an opportunity for happiness to shine through. I learned how to “avoid the rabbit hole of negative thinking” and now can get myself out of a funk in a few seconds.
I had a burning to desire to share these strategies with others because the value is exponential. And, almost every person I meet is stressed and not in a healthy way. People will learn at Activating Happy that there is stress that has a value and stress that is unhealthy to our well-being. We know about almost every other part of our body more than our brain. It’s a bit mind blowing. This organ can catapult us in the most positive ways if we have a basic understanding about how it works.
How are you better/different than your competition?
I don’t know of an event in the Portland area that focuses on the understanding our brain for optimum living. It’s also a fun, entertaining conference that applies practical strategies that are easy to implement in your daily, busy life.
How do you make money?
We have wonderful sponsors that believe in the importance of Activating Happy. Major sponsors include: Starbucks, Umqua Bank, Zupan’s Markets, Lake Oswego Public Library, KUNI BMW, Office Products Nationwide.
A percentage from tickets sales will go to The Pixie Project, loving pets and people through personalized pet adoption and low-cost veterinary care.
What’s the best part about being an entrepreneur?
I have always been an entrepreneur. In fact, my husband, and two children are entrepreneurs. I embrace the creativity it asks of me. I welcome meeting talented, professionals from all walks of life who help me enhance the creative process. As an entrepreneur, you are in the driver’s seat, constantly firing off neural networks in your brain and that’s incredibly healthy if you can keep stress in check.
What has been the biggest surprise in your entrepreneurial experience to date?
That I could succeed at working for myself! It requires motivation and dedication. I have found, if you are passionate about what you’re doing, you welcome the challenges. I have a sign in my office that says, “Whatever you do, follow your passion.”
Your biggest success?
I have worked in the television and film industry and with entrepreneurs as a publicist for many years and loved the experience. But my heart and soul is in Activating Happy. To have such remarkable support staff helping my vision come true, fills me with enormous gratitude. And, I know the knowledge attendees will gain from AH! will help them succeed in ways they never dreamed possible.
What is the best entrepreneurial advice you have received (and from whom)?
There’s no such thing as failure. When someone says “no,” you say “next.” I’m not sure where that came from but my parents never believed in the word “failure.” If things don’t work out, it’s part of the learning experience and something better will. Often times, what we may see as failure, turns out to be a blessing in disguise.
What is your #1 piece of advice for a budding entrepreneur?
Understand how your brain works so it works for you, not against you. You will learn to stay focused and be much more creative and happier for yourself and those around you.
What is the #1 book you would recommend for a budding entrepreneur?
Brad Pendergraft’s new book: The Un-Worried Brain
When you were a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
I wanted to be like Jane Goodall and work with chimpanzees.
Do you think Oregon is a good place to start a business? How has it helped you, and what challenges has it posed?
I love being an entrepreneur in Oregon. It’s gratifying to be able to work on a national and international scale in a state that you love. Oregon’s beauty keeps me grounded. If I need a quick pick me up, I go for a walk or hike in the woods. It does a soul good. There is considerable scientific research that supports the health benefits of experiencing nature. Oregon is also the home to an extraordinary number of wildly creative entrepreneurs. It’s energizing to be around it.