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Maximise the simple pleasures at Southern Cross University workshop


Jessica Nelson
10 July 2018

Learn how to make the most of simple pleasures in life - minus the guilt - at an upcoming Pleasure Lab workshop in Coffs Harbour.

Southern Cross University researcher Dr Desirée Kozlowski and psychological science Honours student Joseph Croguennec are calling for volunteers to attend one of two upcoming workshops on July 14 and 28, to study the effects of ‘maximising pleasure’ on a number of outcomes including wellbeing.

“This is my area of passion – helping people truly enjoy the pleasurable moments in life. The truth is that most of us take our pleasure for granted or feel embarrassed taking pleasure in things,” said Dr Kozlowski, who has spent six years researching hedonic pleasures and emotional intelligence as it relates to wellbeing, leadership and teamwork.

“We live in a society which often promotes fear, division and threat, and which treats pleasure as frivolous. The cost in terms of health is considerable, as when we feel under threat and not safe, this activates the sympathetic nervous system due to stress. What we need is for our para-sympathetic nervous system to be activated which allows us to sleep better, digest better and even promotes cellular repair.”

Dr Kozlowski said she couldn’t ‘give away too much more’ information ahead of the training workshops to be held at Southern Cross University Coffs Harbour campus, to ensure there was no impact on the short questionnaires participants will complete.

“No physical contact is involved, the focus is on identifying simple, everyday things that lead to pleasurable emotions, such as enjoying a coffee and taking a walk outdoors,” Dr Kozlowski said.

The research findings will be published towards the end of 2018.

“I have conducted these Pleasure Lab workshops around the country where participants take part in activities, information sessions and sharing ideas,” Dr Kozlowski said.

“There is plenty of research showing pleasurable emotions are associated with increased creativity, resilience, productivity and wellbeing. Through these Pleasure Lab workshops I teach people to activate this para-sympathetic system, focussing on and maximising the simple pleasures in life, and in effect become better friends, better partners, better in the workplace, and in general more fun to be around.”

If you are interested in exploring the health and psychological benefits of maximising the simple pleasures available in everyday life, are aged over 18 and can attend the workshop in Coffs Harbour, sign up now by filling in the contact form at