Courtney Ackerman - Researcher, Consultant & Author "5-Minute Bliss"
Courtney Ackerman is a researcher and author of My Pocket Positivity, My Pocket Gratitude, and her most recent book 5 Minutes Bliss: A More Joyful, Connected and Fulfilled You in Just 5 Minutes a Day.
When you live with intention and stay true to your purpose, you open the door to lasting fulfillment and joy—a state of bliss. 5-Minute Bliss shows you how to find and maintain your bliss through fun, quick mindfulness exercises and techniques that allow you to find positivity within your mind and body, as well as in your relationships and surroundings.
Whether you are facing a challenge, dealing with an emotionally difficult day, or simply want to celebrate the good things in your life, 5-Minute Bliss is full of inspiration and practical techniques to promote feelings of joy and contentment in mere minutes. The exercises in this book are a perfect escape for any day and are bound to leave you feeling happy and satisfied with life—in a true state of bliss that so you can reengage with world in a meaningful, productive way.
5-Minutes Bliss is full of tools and tips that Courtney used to inject a little bit of bliss into her everyday life, and her hope is that readers like her—who don’t necessarily find it easy to be positive—will find these exercises to be a valuable addition to their own lives, creating opportunities to experience more joy and contentment every day. None of the exercises in the book will take more than 5 or 10 minutes, but research has shown that that’s all it takes to make a significant impact on your perspective. (How cool is that!?) It’s Courtney’s hope that this book will help readers discover the power of positivity, gratitude, and strategic optimism.
Courtney has a master’s degree in positive organizational psychology and evaluation from Claremont Graduate University in California. She has a passion for survey research, well-being at work, and finding evidence-based methods for people to live happier, healthier, and more authentic lives.
When she’s not working, she’s usually spending time with her dogs, reading a book, visiting a nearby winery, or playing video games with her husband. I’m so excited for you guys to learn more about Courtney and 5-Minute Bliss, and to connect with her and follow along!
I'd love it if you'd introduce yourself, what you do, and what you're working on.
My name is Courtney Ackerman and I'm a researcher, author, and consultant. I'm currently working for the state of California in healthcare workforce research, but I'm also working as a survey research consultant, regularly contributing articles to the Positive Psychology Program website, and finishing up my third book, My Pocket Gratitude. I'm a busy bee!
How did you get started?
I first became interested in positive psychology as an undergraduate, then pursued that interest through the positive psychology program at Claremont Graduate University. I became fascinated with the human potential for thriving, flourishing, and making something positive out of trauma or tragedy. As I learned more about all the ways to open my life up to the positive, I became increasingly interested in taking this knowledge and turning it into an actionable package of tips and tricks that people can apply in their own lives.
What inspired the work that you're doing?
My work is inspired by a passion for helping others gain the knowledge and resources required to make small but significant improvements in their lives. It can feel daunting to consider making changes like these, but what most people don't realize is that dedicating just a few minutes a day to positivity, mindfulness, and gratitude can result in a substantial increase in well-being.
What is your biggest passion? Do you feel like you're living your passion and purpose?
My biggest passion is sharing what I've learned with others in a way that is easy to understand and easy to apply. I like to work in a specific niche--the small space between the more academic, research-focused side of things and the more practical, application-focused side of the spectrum. I feel like there are very few resources that target this middle area, and it's an important one; it provides a vital bridge between research and application that normal, everyday people can traverse.
What is your joy blueprint? What lights you up, brings you joy, and makes you feel the most alive?
I most often find myself lighting up with joy when I try something new. I love branching out and putting myself in exciting and novel situations--that's when we grow!
How do you live intentionally? Are there tools/resources/practices that you rely on to help you stay mindful and grounded?
For me, the most impactful practice for living intentionally is to stay mindful of my own mental state. Self-awareness is a vital skill to have, especially for people who often find their minds drifting into less positive places. I consider myself a natural pessimist or--at best--a realist, so I need to stay on top of my wandering mind and keep it on a more positive path.
What would your younger self think about what you're doing now?
I think my younger self would be surprised to see me now! I never thought I'd get into positive psychology; although, to be fair, I had never heard of positive psychology until the tail end of my college years. I always liked writing but never thought I'd really publish a book. Young me would be thrilled with current me's success, which I try to remind myself of when my mind starts drifting towards the negative.
Do you have a go-to mantra or affirmation?
I have a couple that I like to bring to mind to help me stay in a positive and grateful place: (1) "this too shall pass" reminds me that even the worst days will eventually end, and (2) "all people are worthy of love and respect, and that includes me" reminds me to extend the same compassion and understanding I have for other people to myself. Like many people, I sometimes find it easier to be kind and considerate to others than to myself.
What is your biggest dream?
What a question! I'm not sure what my biggest dream is, but I do have a couple of big dreams. I'd eventually like to work completely independently as a consultant and author, and on a more personal note I'd like to be able to travel more frequently and visit some of the many beautiful places on my bucket list! Traveling provides some of the best opportunities for learning and personal development, and they're just plain fun!
Joy Corner is a new interview-style blog series brought to you by Seek The Joy Podcast. Our mission continues to be a desire to share your stories, truths, joys and inspiration in your words. We invite you to join our corner, and share your joys, passions, and moments of inspiration as we continue to seek the joy, together. Join this series here