I attended a talk last fall entitled The Science of Happiness by Dr. Catherine Sanderson, a psychology professor who teaches at Amherst College. She gave the following suggestions of how to increase happiness in your life.
One of my greatest sources of happiness – besides spending time with the people I love, traveling and eating chocolate – has been producing creative projects.
I have produced everything from international photography exhibits, award winning CD compilations, documentary films and even an animated short about cocoa farmers. When I worked in the music industry I produced websites for major artists and put together a world music lecture and performance series. I have conceived of and created chocolate tasting fundraisers and workshops on financial sustainability for nonprofit and social enterprises. Next year I will be self-publishing my first book called Discovering Ganesh. The Hindu deity Ganesh is known as the Lord of Beginnings, Patron of the Arts, and Remover of Obstacles.
For those of you who haven’t produced your dream project yet - yes...that big scary one that matters the most - there are usually two things standing in the way.
Below are a few examples of my creative projects. Some made it to the commercial world with great success; others did not. When I wasn't able to secure a commercial release for a project, I felt a deep sense of failure. But over time what I learned was that what mattered the most to me was not being known for my projects, but taking a dream and making it a reality.
Other related Skillshare classes:
What You'll Learn In This Class
I'll share a step-by-step approach that can be applied to the beginning phases of anything you want to create: a project, a product or a company. I will also share stories of how I went from concept to completion with several of my projects. (See detailed class description.)
In addition we will spend time in class talking about the creative process and the fear of failure, and how to move through it. Here is the great news...everyone fails. It's a necessary part of the creative process and it's where our greatest learning comes from.
Shana Dressler’s career began as a documentary photographer and producer spanning a wide range of forms, from stills to video to multimedia. In 2004 she founded Swimming Elephant Productions, a multimedia company which produces all of her artistic projects. 2004 also marked her transition into the social good world. She was hired by Link TV to create business systems for their music and culture department. Link TV is a Peabody award-winning satellite TV station, which broadcasts important documentaries about problems facing humanity and the people, the programs and the organizations that are working to find solutions.
In February of 2009, Shana founded the Global Giving Circle and began to build unique giving communities focused on raising funds and creating awareness around such issues as human rights, the global water crisis, youth education, women’s leadership and social entrepreneurship.
Currently, Shana heads up the Social Innovators Collective. The SIC was originally designed as a membership organization for dynamic, emerging founders, leaders and individuals who work in the social enterprise and nonprofit sectors both nationally and internationally. However, the organization is currently transforming into an online educational platform with offline classes and workshops. The mission is to nurture, shape, and train the next wave of changemakers so that they can not only demonstrate measurable social impact, but also achieve financially sustainability.