Do you want to be happier? Read This.

Hey there — canstockphoto17885257
Do you want to be happier?
Does your work (as a recreation therapist) require you to help people (like patients/ clients) to feel to feel happier?
Do you want to know the secrets to happiness?
Check this out…
Modern scientists have studied happiness (since the 90s).
They’re called – “positive psychologists.”
Positive Psychology is one of the most popular courses at Harvard.
Thousands of students attend the course weekly.
This branch of psychology is exploding and will continue to do so.
I feel that those of us in rec therapy are applied positive psychologists.
I think it is vital that recreational therapists have some basic knowledge of the principles related to positive psychology.
Go here to register for the advanced certificate course in positive psychology that I’ve created for you:
Did you know… 
There are many experiences and activities that increase Dopamine in the body.
This is a neurotransmitter associated with feeling good.
I regret to say that dopamine starts to decrease in people during their teenage years.
If it decreases too much and too fast a person will have Parkison’s Disease.
However, in general, there are some natural activities that can help increase happiness!
The “activities” or path to happiness is different for different people.
Here are some:
  • Physical activity: especially unique activities like surfing
  • Strong connections, including quality time with family and/ or friends
  • Strong social support network
  • Loving-kindness – doing good and helping others
  • A sense of gratitude and appreciate for things in life
  • Play and having fun in life (at any age)
  • Participating in meaningful activities (which could be the work one does) or community service
  • Having new experiences
Doesn’t all of that sound like a Recreation Therapy interventions to help a person who is suffering?
I think so!
Wouldn’t it be nice to show support and evidence that the “activities” you’re providing for patients are interventions with evidenced-based research that demonstrates they bring about outcomes associated with improving healthier living styles, better physical health and wellness, as well as improved mood and affect?
I think so too!
My embarrassing and painful disclosure:
I’ve suffered from generalized anxiety and depression since I was a child. Except, as a child, I didn’t have the worlds to explain my emotions. Of course, as a disclaimer: I’ve seen a psychiatrist for medication and have spoken to a counselor during my college years.
Today, I’m very happy to have discovered the power of positive psychology (which are applied recreation therapy interventions). I not only use this stuff in my own life, I also teach it to the children and teens who I provide services for. Okay – you can laugh aloud that that because it sounded like hair club for men where the guy says I’m not only the president, but I’m a client member too. or something like that.
But the truth is:
The Anxiety and Depression Association of America (ADAA) reports that anxiety is the most common mental health issue in Americans.
Next question: Do you want to learn more about positive psychology?
I hope so.
Go here to register for the advanced certificate course in positive psychology that I’ve created for you:
Good news: I have created an advanced certificate course on the topic!
Who this course is for:
 People who are seeking three advanced specialty certificates in behavioral health to count towards their behavioral health certification (to recognize expert knowledge beyond the CTRS credential)
 People who are seeking to learn the secrets of happiness and how it can be applied to helping others (as well as yourself)
 People who want to be on the inside of knowledge.
Who this course is NOT for:
  • People who are so happy and satisfied with their life that they don’t need improvement.
  • People who hold a Master’s degree have another option/ path to gain advanced specialty certification without the need for three advanced certificate courses.
Go here to register for the advanced certificate course in positive psychology that I’ve created for you:
Here is an overview of the course:
  • The course is worth ten clock hours of continuing education.
  • Session content is CE Pre-approved by NCTRC, so you know they count.
  • Requirements include:
    • Read an interesting text book
    • Write at least three comments about the book in our member’s group
    • Watch a one hour webinar on the topic
    • Pass a written test with a score of 80% or better. You’re guaranteed to pass or you can retake the quiz for free (as many times as you want or need).
  • Bonus # 1: I mail you the required book!
  • Bonus # 2: You’ll get access to network with other students in our exclusive facebook group.
  • Bonus # 3: Discount: The Standard Price for my Advanced Certification Courses is $647. These courses have a special discount ($200) off most of the time, so they’re only $447
Go here to register for the advanced certificate course in positive psychology that I’ve created for you:
 Guarantee # 1: Session content is CE Pre-approved by NCTR
 Guarantee # 2: 100% Satisfaction Guaranteed – You have a complete 365 (one full year) to claim a refund on this course if you’re not happy for any reason.
 Guarantee # 3: You’ll pass the course quiz or you can re-take it again as many times as you want or need.
Go here to register for the advanced certificate course in positive psychology that I’ve created for you:

your friend and partner in rec therapy, Danny Pettry.
Sincerely yours,
Danny W. Pettry II, M.Ed., M.S, LPC, NCC, CTRS
Founder of Rec Therapy CEUs
Danny cares. Email him: (yup, that is his personal email).
P.s. I don’t want you to miss out on this course. Register for it at this link:

Positive Psychology Secrets – analytics


I presented on positive psychology tonight through my webinar series.

Here are the analytics of the webinar.

  • 209 people clicked on the registration page.
  • 134 people registered for the training webinar.
  • 72 people attended this webinar out of the 134 who registered.

Naturally, there will be a limited time replay for the people who didn’t see the live training.

  • The average time a person was in the session was 59 minutes.
  • Average attentiveness for session was at 78%
  • Average interest rate was at 85%


“Positive Thinking” alone – isn’t enough.

canstockphoto38610867A review of Gabriele Oettingen’s (2014) book, Rethinking positive thinking: inside the new science of motivation.

I often read books based on author reviews on the back of a book.

Two of my favorite authors, Carol S. Dweck, author of Mindset; and Angela Duckworth, author of Grit, had both provided reviews of Gabriele Oettingen’s book.

Here are some concepts that I enjoyed from Oettingen’s book:

  • Martin E. P. Seligman was the founder of positive psychology movement.
    • Danny P. comments: I think we, recreational therapists are applied positive psychologists.


  • Over 50% of new business fail in first five years.
    • Danny P. comments: My company, (Rec Therapy CEUs) is 10 years old!


  • Masolow’s hierarchy of needs was discussed in the book.  Oettingen points out that one level of need that all people have is “identifying with meaning or purpose in life.”
    • Danny P. comments: This reminds me a lot of existential psychology (finding meaning in life) and Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) creating meaning in life.


  • Positive wishes does not mean behavior changes occur. It also requires effort and work.
    • Danny P. comments: This reminds of me the documentary, The Secret, about the law of attraction. The secret focused on attracting good things through thoughts. I’d like to argue that the secret needed to go one step more and remind people to take initiative to make things happen.


  • Relaxation: imagining positive fantasies is a good way to relax. However, being relaxed is not the mood needed to achieve results.  The author points out research in 1990 that shows positive fantasies were not shown to bring out achieved results.
    • Danny P. comments: Effort is needed to make a result.


  • Expectations are important. Those who had high expectations of achieved outcomes were more likely to increase effort and the achieved success with wish. People with low expectations that wish would come to fruition were less likely to engage effort.
    • Danny P. comments: Realistic outcomes are important.


  • Mental contrasting: consists of a.) Dreaming/ wishing; and b.) Identifying obstacles/ barriers.
    • Danny P. comments: It helps a person to have a realistic idea on what behavior is needed to make the dream a reality.


  • Standardized testing:  there really isn’t a test for creativity. There are tests like IQ tests, and SAT, and ACT.
    • Danny P. comments: Problem-solving requires creative thinking.


  • Research on mental contrasting:  Creative potential scale (CPS). Mental contrasting was shown to be effective.
    • Danny P. comments: Simply providing positive feedback alone is not enough. The most effective, the mental contracting.


  • WOOP intervention consists of:
    • Wish (W)
    • Outcome (best possible you’d hope for)
    • Obstacle: something that could prevent it from happening
    • Plan: Action steps to get over the obstacle
    • If ___ then I’ll ______

Danny P. comments: the author’s WOOP intervention appears to be helpful.


Here is my amazon affiliate link:

Review for Happy Secrets

A total of 107 people signed up for the webinar and 67 people showed up and attended
What did you like about the webinar?
Here are the comments from people who submitted reviews:
Ideas on how to incorporate techniques for programs.
A Lot of good points where made that I can use in my practice. Also there where a few assessments named that could be helpful to use in my practice. I also would like to read all the books that were mentioned in the webinar.
it was amazing.
Very Interesting. Will use in my workplace
I enjoyed how he provided multiple different types of resources (books & websites) in order to continue further research surrounding this topic.
Stay positive. Validate emotions. If you want to be happy study happy people
The flow of the presentation.
I enjoyed knowing there is an online class on happiness to earn further CEU’s
I found there to be a lot of information I could utilize in my groups
It reminded why being happy is so important
The cheer yourself up suggestions were good for personal use as well as groups. I also see emotions in a new light, neither good nor bad. The validation of emotions will definitely be incorporated in my anger management groups.
all of it.
I enjoyed all the information, the books you recommended, and the interaction you provided the peers. Thank you again.
I enjoyed the list of resources you provided about happiness. I will be looking for some of the books in the near future. I have even already gone and taken the positive ratio test!
It was a great reminder on what to practice on a daily basis to improve one’s happiness.
I learned ways to help make myself happier, which in turn I would be in a better place emotionally/mentally to help my residents.
educational and interesting
I really enjoyed hearing personal stories and hearing how you work with youth. The affect assessment was really helpful as well.
I enjoyed the section discussing measuring your happiness and cheering yourself up. I thought the discussion of mental health was important as well
I liked the Charlie Brown book about happiness.
It was very informative and entertaining, love your accent
I enjoyed the fact that you related it to Rec Therapy so many times
learning about resources that I could use
The research based info
Learned a lot I can use in my work place and he kept it interesting
Lots of good resources given!
I enjoyed the suggestions of FUN activities/groups.
The different ideas for groups to run
Learning different secrets to happiness
I enjoyed that there were relatable moment and the cartoons.
I enjoyed all the information about various books to use as resources
Great webinar Danny! Very well thought out. You backed every tip on how to cheer up with studies and research and gave great book resources. I want to do a group with my patients on this subject matter with all the tips you gave out! Thank you!
All the book resources that were provided
Very informative and well presented
Very applicable for the patients I work with. Informative
The webinar was filled with information and i would love to have a list of the books you spoke of.
Theories and sources used
I enjoyed seeing all of the resources and books that were used and recommended.
Good refresher for basic knowledge that we as professionals forget to break down
reference books
Informative and helpful with good points and book list.
It reinforced and added to what I share with my clients!
The book recommendations.
The information about happiness.
Enjoyed all the resources and assessments K Informative
The topic is of interest.
Good advice about assisting clients and practitioners to have a better attitude.
Very informative
The excellent suggested reading material. Also, multiple suggestions that I can utilize when assessing and assisting patients.
Learned useful tools to utilize with my patients. Enjoyed hearing of new resources and book suggestions to learn more information on happiness.
I enjoyed the book ideas! I’m excited to see the email with the book list.
I related to a lot of the stories. I work in inpatient mental health and so I understand how some of this content could work in a group session.
Easy to follow along with format and the great humor kept me engaged.
I think this is great subject to re-evaluate every so often because people often take happiness for granted. This allowed me to really think about what makes me happy and why it is so important to keep yourself and others connected with happiness.
Very interesting information.
I like there is 4 four different assessments to measure: Optimism, Positivity, Resilience, and Happiness.

Need CEUs? Want something conveient: Go here:


How could the webinar have been improved?

here are the answers:

It was great
There was some lag.
Ending at 5:00. I am on the clock and my employer expected me to have this complete within an hour.
Not sure, it was entertaining for me 🙂
An hour isn’t enough time to go over everything; however, if we can obtain a slide before the webinar, it could be helpful when taking notes.
It was perfect
It was good. No changes needed
Not sure
I think the webinar was run very smoothly and I do not have anything I would change about it.
More coping skills to utilize.
It was great!
It was great, I enjoyed it
I think this was great! I appreciate this happy topic
Personally I liked it when webinars were on Wednesdays but that’s because that is my day off. Either way I was able to watch this webinar at work.