What makes Hamilton ‘Awesome’?— asks New York Times bestselling author

Hamilton’s premier young professional conference ends with an inspiring keynote on the 4 S’s of being awesome at work.

By Sherry Mousavi
Chair: Hamilton Media Guild
Twitter: @sherrymousavi

Besides the beautiful harbour, historic buildings, Jed the dancing guy and the city’s waterfalls— Hamilton’s friendly people and its avenues for connections are what Neil Pasricha concluded are awesome in Hamilton.

Pasricha finds conferences for young professionals like Hamilton’s #HIVEX, ‘stimulating’ and ‘awesome’.

A New York Times bestselling author of The Book of Awesome, the 34-year-old presented the final key-note during a social reception at the conference. It was held on the 21st floor of Hamilton’s Stelco Tower—with its 360 degree view of Hamilton.

Neil Pasricha presenting an 'awesome' keynote at Hive X (Photo by: Alyssa Lai)

Neil Pasricha presenting an ‘awesome’ keynote at #HIVEX (Photo by: Alyssa Lai)

He describes himself as an average guy who eats frozen burritos for dinner and works in a cubicle. In his talk Pasricha took the crowd of more than 100 on a journey of his life through humour, videos, pictures and poignant life lessons.

“All you hear is negative news in the media like sea levels rising, hurricanes, war, crime—there is so much bad news everywhere. I needed a way to focus on something good,” said Pasricha, the Canadian-born descendant of Kenya and India.

Journey to ‘awesome-ness’
After a rough patch in his life, he began writing every night for his blog. He never imagined writing about the cold side of the pillow, walking on grass with bare feet, mistaking Thursday for Friday, or wearing underwear just out of the dryer.

One day he picked up the phone to hear that his blog, 1000awesomethings.com, had won best blog in the world. It now has a readership in the millions.

He began spreading a little optimism each day about the free, easy little joys that make life worth living.

Pasricha has won three Webby Awards (“the internet’s highest honour,” according to the New York Times). His blog was also awarded one of PC Magazine’s Top 100 Sites On the Internet. He has written three bestselling books and participated in hundreds of speaking engagements, including a TED talk in Toronto.

The Harvard graduate is expecting a baby and is on the look out for a home. Just last year, Pasricha signed a deal with a Canadian film producer to turn the The Book of Awesome into a feature film and he is waiting to see what comes out of that.

In his keynote, Pasricha emphasized that there are many things in the world to be happy about.

“We are not here very long and we will never be as young as we are now. Most of our time and days will be spent working and striving for a purpose that is bigger than ourselves,” he said.

Live a life that is rich and satisfying with the following 4 S’s:

Neil Pasricha signing off copies of his New York Times Bestselling book "The Book of Awesome." (Photo by: Alyssa Lai)

Neil Pasricha signing off copies of his New York Times Bestselling book “The Book of Awesome.” (Photo by: Alyssa Lai)

4 S’s of Being Awesome at Work:

Social – Adding a social element in the middle of the day
Structure – Scheduling in your calendar something that you know you love
Stimulation – Being stimulated by embracing your inner three-year-old and writing about the awesome things that happen to you.
Story – Making your story come to life and being a part of stories bigger than yourself

Sherry Mousavi

Sherry Mousavi is a business and media professional who lives, works and plays in the city of Hamilton. The McMaster Commerce graduate has been a professional writer for Torstar, a financial analyst at Hamilton Health Sciences and spearheaded the launch of a real estate brokerage. Sherry is very involved in the community as the co-founder and chair of Hamilton Media Guild, board member of Hamilton HIVE, member of YEP, committee member of Hamilton Media Advisory Council, correspondent on a new arts and entertainment show for Cable 14, as well as a volunteer for the Art Gallery of Hamilton and Empowerment Squared.

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