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Happiness Rocks!

The Art of Happiness: Learning How to Live a Healthier Happier Life

by Shelly Krajny

The Art of Happiness course, also known as KHP 509, is a health promotion elective in the Department of Kinesiology & Health Promotion that examines the teachings of the Dalai Lama and how these principles can help people live a happier, healthier, and more productive life.  Aside from defining happiness, a core message of the class is “the right to happiness.” Simply put, happiness is a real and attainable goal for everyone. The unique personal nature of the content allows for heightened involvement from students while also challenging them every day.

The Art of Happiness course covers a variety of subjects including: Stress, Forgiveness, Self-Esteem, Living in the Moment, Humor, and Flow Theory. Depending on the day, if you walked by my classroom you might find students in groups analyzing case studies, painting positivity rocks, or building towers out of pasta and marshmallows. The class allows students to explore how their behaviors influence their happiness and how health and happiness are inextricably linked. Students examine what makes people happy and practice many of the principles shown to increase one’s happiness.

We know that happier people are healthier, and healthier students learn better. So today I challenge you to ask yourself, “Am I happy? If the answer is yes, then keep doing what you’re doing, and if not…today is the perfect day to make a positive change.

To provide feedback, contact me (Shelly Krajny, shelly.krajny@nulluky.edu) to learn more about KHP 509 and health and happiness.


Dalai Lama & Cutler, H.C. (1998). The Art of Happiness: A handbook for living. New York; Riverhead Books.

Shelly Krajny is a Lecturer in the Department of Kinesiology and Health Promotion. She teaches undergraduate courses in Health Promotion, including Personal health and Wellness, Health Education in the Elementary School, and Drug Education.