‘Happier’ Co-Founder and Chief Happiness Officer Nataly Kogan ’98 discusses how she spent years “dreaming in American” and chasing “The Big Happy.” Nataly, a ‘sharer of joy,’ describes how her startup figures in the pursuit of happiness in a TEDTalk on “how pancakes can make you happier and change the world.”
The following is from an article in Fortune:
Nataly Kogan understands the pursuit of happiness — in her younger years, she lived for it.
As a Jewish refugee from Soviet Russia, Kogan escaped her native country at the age of 13 with a handful of suitcases and $600 in cash for her entire family of four. Jumping between refugee camps across Europe, Kogan finally made it to the United States where her pursuit of happiness really took off. She graduated top of her class from Wesleyan University. She worked at McKinsey & Company, then at Microsoft. She got married and had a daughter. On paper, Kogan had achieved the American Dream. But still, she wasn’t happy.
Kogan is the CEO and Chief Happiness Officer of startup Happier. She not only finds herself in better spirits but spends her days trying to pass the feeling along to others as well. The secret, she says, is understanding that you can’t actually be happy, but you can always be happie
In Happier, the expectation is everything is positive, so you don’t need to show off. A happy moment is a different type of social content, it’s smaller, it’s more personal. It doesn’t need a cool photo, and it doesn’t need to be impressive. It can be as tiny as “I just got a great parking spot!” or “My kid gave me a hug after work.” You don’t need to feel bad when you’re posting positive things, nor do you need to feel like you need to make a big deal out of it like you would on Facebook.
Image thumb: from TEDxBoston 2013
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- Dreaming in American
- NYTimes: A social network dedicated to happy moments
- 3 things I learned about how to be happier
- Nataly Kogan at Happier
- Nataly Kogan: An interview with Arianna Huffington
- Nataly Kogan on LinkedIn