Invest in Happiness

By Continuing Education

A leader at a major national insurance company changed the way his team thought about its work and tripled revenues. A school district raised its graduation rate from 44 to 89 percent in a few short years. And a group of seventy-five year old men shifted their mindset about getting older and altered the aging process. 

Michelle Gielan, best-selling author of Broadcasting Happiness and upcoming guest on Normandale's June 7th radio program Learning Well, maintains that people can absolutely change the trajectory of their careers, families, companies and communities when they invest in the basic principles of happiness. 


As a CBS national news anchor at the height of the recession, Gielan saw her broadcast colleagues air one story after another about the devastating effects of the largest economic downturn this country had seen since the Great Depression. As an experiment, Gielan and her team created a series of interviews with researchers from the field of positive psychology to discuss ways to foster greater happiness in the midst of real challenge. The question was whether these segments would have any real or lasting impact. Would they be able to provide viewers with the positive tools needed to make meaningful changes?

As the months went on, stories of "happiness success" poured in from across the country. It became clear that when people are given tools grounded in positivity, progress can be made in any area of our lives, and with less resistance. In fact, the results were so compelling that Gielan walked away from a broadcast journalist's dream job to get an advanced degree in Applied Positive Psychology from the University of Pennsylvania where she worked with the founder of the positive psychology field, Dr. Martin Seligman. She now works with clients around the globe and is a nationally recognized speaker, expert and instructor. 

Even though we are emotionally wired to anticipate threats, Gielan explains that we can choose to focus our attention on the positive: our resources, strong connections to others and ways our lives are meaningful. Recent research in the fields of positive psychology and neuroscience shows that even small shifts in the way we communicate can increase productivity, performance ratings and sales, while decreasing levels of stress. 

To learn about specific tools of positive change, please join our host, Elise Marquam Jahns, for a conversation with Michelle Gielan on the June 7th, 6-7 p.m. edition of Normandale's Learning Well internet radio program: 

During the show, Gielan will share strategies that can be applied immediately to enhance our work and to strengthen our relationships. Some strategies will feel intuitive while others may be more surprising. 

Bottom-line, Gielan states that "the pursuit of happiness will add dividends to your life. When we learn to promote the positive, we not only flourish but more importantly, we become mindful of how our thoughts, words and actions can generate waves of happiness beyond our own lives."

We encourage our listeners to call into the show by dialing 714-364- 4750 with questions during the live broadcast, or access the recorded version by simply Googling "Learning Well Archives."

The Learning Well show is one of many ways that Normandale demonstrates its commitment to our community. We strive to provide rich opportunities for individuals, teams and organizations to learn through a range of options from seminars, events and corporate on-site training programs. Let us know how we can help you meet your learning goals, by contacting us at 952-358- 8343 or Don't worry, be happy...and learn! 

HAPPY AT WORK - How Do You Score?

Research shows that 75% of job success can be predicted from a person's overall work optimism, positive engagement and support provisions. If you'd like to see how you score, you can access Gielan's assessment. You'll receive your personal scores and an interpretive report upon completion. Simply go to:

To learn more about how your organization can enhance innovation, please contact us at 952-358-8343 or We look forward to listening!