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Interview with Sunny Grosso

Learn more about Sunny Grosso’s keynotes, inspirations, and her most exciting experience. Read her interview with A-Speakers below.

How much does humor factor into your keynotes and speaking engagements?

Quite a bit!

Humor is a great way to connect with the audience, which is essential. It’s also one of the simplest and most effective tools to open our minds to new insights. Change is never easy. Humor invites others into our space and surrounds us with positive emotion as others laugh and smile. This relaxes our ego, and that pesky judgment reflex, and opens us up to receive new information. Positive mental states actually broaden our focus and allow us to let in more ideas and opportunities. This gives us the best chance of striking one of those a-ah moments that energize real positive change in our lives.

Do you have a favorite experience from your speaking career?

Yes, many! I love that question; if we don’t love what we do, why are we doing it?

In Korea I was asked to do three talks in one day. The last one was a TED-style 20min talk. I decided to speak on a risky topic for a traditional work culture. Work-life integration. To demonstrate the concept of bringing our whole selves to work, and showing up more fully to our lives, I wore a nice blouse and did my hair and make-up as you would expect for a speaker in a formal society. And… I wore my running tights and running shoes on the bottom!

I gave the full talk that way.

It was a little scary and embarrassing, but ultimately amazing to see folk’s expressions of shock and concern move to humor, and finally, to curiosity and wonder about what new ways they could more fully embrace themselves, and show up for their lives.

Why do you think Scandinavian countries are ranked so high in happiness?

Generally we see that people thrive when we design for people. Not just physical design, but our systems, operations, and culture. To truly design a culture for people to thrive we have to respect humans and our inherent nature on an essence level. The level of values.

In the States we value freedom and capitalism, and share a definition of success that relies heavily on money, title, and power. We have a very different result in our happiness ranking as well as our work design, policies, and culture.

Who or what inspires you most?

I have always been inspired by dreamers, but I am most inspired by do-ers.

We have such stunning privileges at this point in history, and we know so much from the science of happiness, that there is little reason the majority of us cannot live big, full lives, follow our purpose as it unfolds, and ultimately achieve our fullest impact. But it is scary. Fear can hijack us in a myriad of ways.

I am inspired by turning fear into positive energy, and pursuing our passions to our own fullest, unique [weird!] expression of ourselves, to live our biggest lives. And by the potential we’re just beginning to realize for this energy to transform the age-old institution of work. Because change starts with each one of us, but we need to work together to change the world.

Why should clients use you for their next event?

Because I am modest. Let me tell you all about myself… how much time do we have? 😉

Kidding! Let me share a bit about my philosophy and goals as a speaker to answer that.

Many speakers talk mainly about themselves and their theories. My goal is to share new ideas around culture and happiness in a way that creates ripples of inspiration, and most importantly, action. To do this I focus on creating a holistic experience using not just my story and theories, but science, humor, colorful examples, and audience participation.

A talk should not be “do as I say,” where the speaker talks about concepts but there is no feeling of those concepts in action. I believe a speaker should embody the concepts, and go beyond simply speaking, to create an experience. Because we humans [curious creatures] learn best when we learn through experience. We become our own teachers, pulling the parts that matter to us, to our values, our lives. Each talk is an opportunity not just to present stories and concepts, but to show them, to create a mini culture of those concepts for an hour, so that everyone leaves with their own personal insights, that matter to them. These are the kind of insights that connect us on a deeply human level, and have the highest likelihood to embed, become intrinsic motivators, and drive positive change in our lives.

The result is not just a talk, but an experience to ultimately help every person in the audience first see, then access and launch into a fraction of their higher potential, and our higher potential together in the world, with happiness.

Click here to learn more about Sunny Grosso!

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