How this UBC Okanagan grad is turning the pandemic into something positive | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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How this UBC Okanagan grad is turning the pandemic into something positive

UBCO Psychology grad Trina Kushnerik created a happiness calendar using positive psychology research.
Image Credit: SUBMITTED/ Trina Kushnerik

Trina Kushnerik was stuck in quarantine after returning from abroad early this spring when she came up with the idea for a calendar that teaches people how to be happier.

The University of British Columbia Okanagan grad decided to put her degree in positive psychology to good use, and help people live happier lives. 

"The pandemic definitely inspired it," Kushnerik said. "I thought, 'what can I do to make people happier?'"

She created A Happier Year, an illustrated flip calendar featuring one science based tip for happiness on each day.

A page from the calendar, A Happier Year.
A page from the calendar, A Happier Year.
Image Credit: SUBMITTED/ Trina Kushnerik

"The reason I chose a calendar is because of the format, you're not reading an entire book all at once," she said. "I think that's a little overwhelming to try to do these 366 actions in one day."

Kushnerik researched, wrote and illustrated the entire calendar herself, and has launched a Kickstarter campaign to promote her work and sell it around the world.

She said the writing and illustrating was easy, but everything else was a brand-new learning experience for her.

"Finding a manufacturer, figuring out how to ship this to people worldwide… it's things you don't really know how to do until you start doing it," she said.

Kushnerik also hosts her own podcast Happycast: The Science of Happiness. Listen online here.

To order A Happier Year online, click here. 

To contact a reporter for this story, email Brie Welton or call (250) 819-3723 or email the editor. You can also submit photos, videos or news tips to the newsroom and be entered to win a monthly prize draw.

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