Monday, May 5, 2014

A Bit About Thrive

Posted on Mon, May 5, 2014 at 7:50 AM

What do a lunchtime dance party in the middle of downtown Cleveland, a farm-to-table tasting experience with a mystery chef in the middle of the National Park, random acts of kindness in public places, contagious laughter with total strangers, a cocktail party staffed by ninjas, all have in common? These are a few of the experiences that we’re cooking up for Clevelanders as local start-up called Thrive.

Thrive is a radical new “happiness incubator,” designing experiences that connect, surprise and delight- leading to a boost in individual and community happiness. “Happiness?” you say. “Sounds kind of fluffy”. Well, this is serious business. Everything Thrive does is rooted in the science of what makes people happy, from the field of positive psychology.

And the science is compelling. Data shows that about fifty percent of our individual level of happiness is linked to our genes, we are just born a certain way, some of us naturally are happier than others. Only ten percent is attributable to our external circumstances, like having our basic needs met: how much money we make, enough food, a safe place to live. That leaves forty percent of our individual level of happiness that is directly impacted by our experiences, intentional thoughts and actions. We think that’s a whole lot of room to play with and it means that our happiness is our choice!

We also know that happiness is contagious within social networks. What?! It’s true. If the guy in the cubicle next to you is happy, you will be happier as a result. The same applies to your neighbors, your best friends and close relatives.

And here’s the other thing. We know that happiness doesn’t come from eating ice cream or listening to our favorite band all day long as fun as that sounds. We define happiness as the intersection between meaning and pleasure. So getting happier can sometimes mean growing through some tough experiences. That’s why we make sure our experiences provide the opportunity to do three things: share, stretch, and smile—in other words, connect to others, learn or do something new or unexpected, and experience pure pleasure.

An example was Dia de Noquis, an evening of gnocchi-making that Thrive organized based on a South American tradition. Participants shared family stories and traditions, learned mindfulness and happiness practices, all while learning how to make homemade gnocchi together. After the feast, they even got to take some gnocchi home to give to someone they care about.

Thrive is made up of a 15 person creative team and lots of amazing partners in the community. Co-Founders Scott Simon and Jen Margolis keep things rolling with a team of talented and diverse professionals from architects to writers, IT and marketing professionals to real estate gurus, engineers, comediennes, yoga instructors, nurses, artists and photographers and everything in between. Our common ground as “happiness designers” speaks to a global happiness movement well underway and taking over the East and West Coasts in the U.S. rooted in the U.K. and evolving worldwide. We have more power over our happiness than we ever thought. We can make choices to thrive.

Want to make that choice in the next few days? Come to our lunchtime dance party at House of Blues on May 6th from noon-1pm. Lunch Beat is a healthy noontime rave – born in a garage in Stockholm, Sweden in 2010. Four years later, it’s a global movement of lunchtime clubbing in 90 cities on all continents. May 6th is Global Lunch Beat Day- Lunch Beats will happen worldwide on the same day- and ours will be a silent disco. What’s that? You get to wear headphones while listening to DJ Steph Floss spin live tunes. From what we hear this makes people dance more and sing loud. So take off the headphones half way through and you’ll hear a quiet room with a lot of people belting out their favorite lyrics. We’re throwing in lunch and some generous and delicious treats from local businesses. We promise you’ll never think of your lunch hour in the same way again. What will happen as a result? We’re pretty sure you’ll head back to your office in a great mood, and because you’re feeling happy, so will your co-worker, and your best friend and your partner and your dog. It’s pretty hard not to catch the Lunch Beat vibe, so get your tickets already! We’ll see you Tuesday! Noon. Sharp. Ready to bust a move.

Buy your tickets here.



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