Back to all posts

Podcast: In all the frenzy, don't forget the fun (Coaches series, w/ Barbara Kenyon)

coaches series podcast Jun 02, 2021

My friend Barbara has always been an event planner. Even when she was a kid, she planned parties and hosted everyone— gifting them with an experience that just made things “better.”

In college, in fact, she studied event management and even took a specialized (read: adapted for her) course plan towards earning her Master’s.

That led her overseas where she planned and hosted events at one of the best venues in the city…

But, of course, life happens.

And things aren’t always as rosy as they seem.

Late in her 20s, Barbara began doing some soul searching. Now at home staring a family, she found herself excited (new blessings) and depleted (new revelations) all at once.

(Such is life, right? As we often say: Life is beautiful, and life is also hard.)

In a short time frame, Barbara:

  • Lost her 2.5 year old niece (and walked with her sister through that journey)
  • Lost two family members to suicide
  • Lost her closest guy friend
  • Saw her own marriage end

In other words, life imploded.


By the way, Barbara has a certification in the “Science of Happiness” from Berkley. She coaches individuals— and corporations.

(Happier employees are more productive employees— and that increases the bottom line and helps everyone.)

In time, Barbara boomeranged back to her original passion— events. But this time she did so with a healthier perspective, one informed by past experience and one shared from her position of health rather than a position of unbridled hustle.

Then Covid hit— and all of the events were placed on standby. And then they were postponed…


During 2020 Barbara had an idea— what if she used the same knowledge (and science) she used to create great events to deliver the “event” in a box?

Happy Event Co morphed into the Happy Box Co.

The “boxes” feature items from local vendors (who were also struggling with the pivot during the pandemic), and have become an ongoing feature Barbara continues to create.

And, of course, it was all built on the science of happiness.

They feature products designed to:

👉 boost dopamine (a “goal” chemical)

👉 lean into your body’s desire for serotonin (calms you down when you’re stressed— and can be achieved in healthy ways rather than over-induling on chocolate or other sweets that lead to “crashes”)

👉 works with the colors that bring fun (i.e., yellow and pink are fun, red is aggressive!)

👉 acknowledges that oxytocin (in a good way) illicit trust— and benefits the giver and the receiver of a gift.

👉 understands who mirror neurons work…


Barbara said she just knew this was something she was supposed to do…

… yet, she wasn’t so sure where the idea came from (Was it God? Was it her? She was hesitant to say…)

I took her to 1 Corinthians 2:16— which says, “You have the mind of Christ” in most modern versions of the Bible.

A better translation is, “You have the IMAGINATION of Christ.”

That is, the supernatural deposits ideas in each of us… some of us, with a science-backed (and supernatural empowered) destiny to bring the fun…


I asked Barbara for a few things, practically speaking, everyone can do each day to elevate the fun…

✅ Your music matters. In the same way sound sets the environment at a party or a play or any other place, it can set the mood for your day.

✅ Dance. Even if you don’t know how to. It’s impossible to be miserable while you dance.

✅ Small things. Notice them. And do them. Like the cup of coffee you like. Or the sunset. Or the walk. We often think that happiness comes in one big bulk gain. It doesn’t. It comes in small does, added up, over time. Keep your tank full.

✅ Go outside. Sit in the shade and enjoy the breeze. Go to the park. We need vitamin D AND nature…

✅ Colors. Don’t do drab every day. Break the monotony (plus, when you look better, you feel better).

✅ Smile at people. And even talk to strangers. It’s almost impossible for them to NOT smile back.

✅ Create a small “reward” to look forward to. And then enjoy it (i.e., something you’ll do at the end of the day, when work is done, etc.)

Notice, nothing above costs money….


Links for this show

Barbara’s website: 

Barbara's Instagram account: 

For more: Read Shawn Achor’s book, 
The Happiness Advantage:

Take the free 21 day challenge— 

Never miss a new post + podcast!

Join our mailing list to receive the latest news and updates

We hate SPAM. We will never sell your information, for any reason.