Taking in the Good with Dr. Rick Hanson

A workshop for building inner strength and stronger relationships

  • Venue: International House at UC Berkeley
  • Date: March 14, 2015
  • Time: 9 am-4:30 pm
  • Price: $125-$149

Please note: Webcast registration for this event has now closed.

In this day-long presentation, renowned teacher and best-selling author Rick Hanson will explore how mindful attention to positive experiences can cultivate happiness, resilience, love, and inner peace.

Dr. Hanson, a Greater Good Science Center Senior Fellow, will explain how the brain has evolved a negativity bias, so it’s like Velcro for negative experiences but Teflon for positive ones--which wears down health, mood, and self-worth. Happily, we can correct this bias by tapping the hidden power of everyday experiences to weave lasting inner strength and peace of mind into one’s brain and one's life.

Drawing on the exciting science of "neuroplasticity," Dr. Hanson will teach a simple method to internalize positive experiences in our memory systems, which can improve our mood and coping skills--in effect, using the mind to change the brain to change the mind for the better. His presentation will review the evolution of the brain and teach four steps that build up the neural circuits of contentment, calm, and confidence. In addition to using these methods for ourselves, he will suggest how we can use them to help children, clients, and patients. 

Dr. Hanson will summarize some of the core concepts and methods he has covered in previous workshops, and then apply these ideas and approaches to important relationships, offering practical resources for mental health professionals and anyone looking to enhance connections (and deal with difficulties) with close friends, family, or colleagues. 

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    Rick Hanson, Ph.D.

    Rick Hanson, Ph.D., is a neuropsychologist, acclaimed teacher, and bestselling author who has written and taught about the essential inner skills of personal well-being, psychological growth, and contemplative practice – as well as about relationships, family life, and raising children.

    His latest book, Hardwiring Happiness: The New Brain Science of Contentment, Calm, and Confidence, was published in October 2013 and became a New York Times bestseller. It shows you how to tap the hidden power of everyday experiences to change your brain and your life for the better.


    He is also the author of Just One Thing: Developing a Buddha Brain One Simple Practice at a Time; Mother Nurture: A Mother's Guide to Health in Body, Mind, and Intimate Relationships; and Buddha's Brain: The Practical Neuroscience of Happiness, Love, and Wisdom


    Dr. Hanson is the founder of the Wellspring Institute for Neuroscience and Contemplative Wisdom and is a senior fellow at the Greater Good Science Center.


    His online course, the Foundations of Well-Being, uses the power of positive neuroplasticity to hardwire more happiness, resilience, self-worth, love, and peace into students' brains and their lives.


    An authority on self-directed neuroplasticity,  Dr. Hanson's work has been featured in the BBC, NPR, CBC, FoxBusiness, US News and World Report, and O Magazine and his articles have appeared in Tricycle Magazine, Insight Journal, and Inquiring Mind. He has several audio programs with Sounds True, he edits the Wise Brain Bulletin, and his weekly e-newsletter, Just One Thing, has over 75,000 subscribers and also appears on the Huffington Post, Psychology Today, and other major websites.


    A summa cum laude graduate of UCLA, Dr. Hanson has been a trustee of Saybrook University, served on the board of Spirit Rock Meditation Center, and was president of the board of FamilyWorks, a community agency. He began meditating in 1974, trained in several traditions, and leads a weekly meditation gathering in San Rafael, California. 






  • 8:30 - 9:00 am

    Registration and check in

  • 9:00 - 10:30 am

    Self-directed neuroplasticity and the brain’s negativity bias

  • 10:30 - 10:45


  • 10:45 - 12:00

    Mindfully internalizing positive experiences

  • 12:00 - 1:00 pm

    Lunch (on your own)

  • 1:00 - 2:45 pm

    Using the HEAL steps to hardwire happiness and other inner strengths

  • 2:45 - 3:00 pm


  • 3:00 - 4:30 pm

    Strengthening your relationships

International House is on the University of California, Berkeley campus at the corner of Piedmont Avenue and Bancroft Way, adjacent to the stadium. Address: 2299 Piedmont Avenue Berkeley, CA 94720. 

By Car

Parking around the International House (I-House) and the UC Berkeley campus can be difficult. In non-metered areas, parking is free for two hours and unregulated after 7 pm. Meters are free with a California disabled placard. If you do drive, here are several public parking lots within a few blocks of the I-House.


Parking on the UC Berkeley campus is challenging. Street parking at meters is free after 6 pm. In non-metered areas, parking is free for two hours and unregulated after 7 pm. Meters are free with a California disabled placard.

1. UNDERHILL LOT: Located at the corner of Channing and College, this lot is a 5-10 minute walk from I-House.

2. TELEGRAPH CHANNING GARAGE: One-half block west of Telegraph Avenue, with entrances on both Durant Avenue and Channing Way. A 15-minute walk to I-House uphill.

3. BOALT LAW SCHOOL LOT: The closest public parking to I-House. From Hearst Ave., turn right on Gayley. Immediately past the Haas Business School, turn right and then left into the lot.

4. KROEBER LOT (Tennis Courts)
This is also close to I-House but more expensive. Located on Bancroft, west of College Ave

5. LOWER HEARST STRUCTURE LOT: Located at the corner of Hearst and Euclid. A 15-20 minute walk to I-House.

6. UNIVERSITY HALL WEST LOT: Located on Addison between Oxford and Shattuck. A 20-25 minute walk to I-House uphill. 

There is also on-street parking on Piedmont Avenue and the other streets around the I-House, some with blue disabled zones, meters and some non-metered. In non-metered areas, parking is free for two hours. (There will be breaks in the program every 60-90 minutes, during which time attendees can even exchange parking spots with one another.) If you plan to look for on-street parking, you may want to add a few minutes to your estimated travel time.

For UC Berkeley parking Information, call (510) 642-4283 or visit http://pt.berkeley.edu/parking/visitor/lots.

Public Transit

Parking around the International House can be difficult, so we encourage you to take public transportation whenever possible to avoid parking fines and ease traffic congestion. Some services require exact fare only (e.g., AC Transit Buses and Campus Shuttle Service). BART and AC Transit buses are used jointly by commuters to come to campus.


BART trains operate from Fremont, Richmond, Pittsburg and Millbrae. A map indicating the route and stops of each train is located at each station. The Berkeley BART station is just 1-1/2 blocks from the Berkeley campus. There are shuttles that run from the BART to the International House. Click here for more information on taking public transportation to the I-House. (Please note that the shuttle pick-up near BART is on Shattuck Ave, between Center and Addison Streets.)

Get off at the "Downtown Berkeley" station.

The campus shuttle from Downtown Berkeley is located across from BART at Center & Shattuck, in front of Bank of America. The bus stops in front of the I-House.

Note: walking from the Berkeley BART station to I-House will take 20-25 minutes up a moderate hill. 

AC Transit
AC Transit  bus service provides transportation for commuters to and from San Francisco and throughout Alameda and Western Contra Costa County. There are several AC bus lines that come near the campus area.


The Oakland Airport is approximately 15 miles from UC Berkeley. A new BART train links the airport to the Coliseum BART station.

San Francisco Airport: Check the ground transport section of the SF airport homepage for directions to Berkeley. Also, see the convenient BART line to the airport.

Other Transit Links
511.org (Traffic conditions and regional transportation options)
Bayporter Express (airport shuttle service)
Muni (San Francisco Buses)
Caltrain (Commuter train service from San Francisco and San Jose)

*Webcast registration for this event has now closed.*

If you can’t make it to the San Francisco Bay Area, never fear: This event will be webcast live!

With the webcast, you’ll watch real-time video of the event, including slides, be able to submit questions to the presenter online, and receive CE credits—all from the comfort of your home, office, or anywhere with a hard-wired Internet connection. You will be emailed prior to the event with course materials and a login and password for the webcast.

* Attendees can receive 6 CE credit hours for attending in-person or online.
* Continuing Education for this event co-sponsored by R. Cassidy Seminars.

Alcoholism & Drug Counselors: Provider approved by CFAAP/CAADAC. Provider 4N-00-434-0214 for 6 CEHs. CAADAC is an ICRC member which has reciprocity with most ICRC member states.

ICF Coaches: ICF coaches can receive a certificate confirming 6 RD hours.

Nurses: Provider approved by the CA Board of Registered Nursing, Provider #CeP12224, for (6) contact hours.

Psychologists: R. Cassidy Seminars is approved by the American Psychological Association to offer continuing education for psychologists. R. Cassidy Seminars maintains responsibility for this program. (6) CE hours.

Social Workers, Marriage and Family Therapists (MFTs), and Counselors: California: Course meets the qualifications for (6) hours of continuing education credit for MFTs and/or LCSWs as required by the California Board of Behavioral Sciences, Provider #PCE418. R. Cassidy Seminars is an approved provider for Social Work continuing education by the Association of Social Work Board (ASWB) through the Approved Continuing Education (ACE) Program. ACE Provider #1082. www.aswb.org Approval Period April 15, 2012 – April 15, 2015. 6 CE hours. R. Cassidy Seminars is a National Board of Certified Counselors (NBCC) Approved Continuing Education Provider (ACEP™) and may offer NBCC approved clock hours for events that meet NBCC requirements. The ACEP solely is responsible for all aspects of the program. (NBCC Provider #6375).

•  Identify ways the brain has a negativity bias and the effects this has on our well-being

•  Discover Dr. Hanson’s four HEAL steps that tap the hidden power of everyday experiences to let us feel strong, happy, peaceful, and loved

•  Adapt the HEAL steps for use in motivation, childrearing, recovery, depression, and trauma recovery

•  Process “antidote experiences,” including those useful for healing old pain

•  Learn why taking in the good triggers the responsive setting of the human brain—the fundamental basis of long-term health and happiness

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