Office for University Outreach

Taking Action!

Taking Action!

Taking Action is a lecture series dedicated to sharing the latest scientific research and inspiring community conversation about ways to promote healthy body, mind and spirit.

Upcoming Talks

This event is FREE; however, registration is required.


December 9, 2014
Macky Auditorium
University of Colorado Boulder

Well-being is a skill
Richard J. Davidson
Center for Investigating Healthy Minds at the Waisman Center
University of Wisconsin-Madison

Scientific evidence suggests that we can change our brains by cultivating habits of mind that will improve well-being, including happiness, resilience, compassion and emotional balance. Each of these characteristics can be shaped and modified within our brain by experience and training, as shown by the ground-breaking research at the Center for Investigating Healthy Minds at the Waisman Center, UW-Madison. In this talk, Dr. Richard Davidson will share how using mental training to cultivate well-being can have a positive impact on happiness, creativity and productivity in the work place and at home.


6:30-6:40pm - Welcome

6:40-7:20pm - Dr. Davidson presentation: Well-being is a skill

7:20-7:35pm - Comments from panelists
Tor Wager, Ph.D., Professor, Department of Psychology and Neuroscience, University of Colorado Boulder: Director, Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience Lab
Sona Dimidjian, Ph.D., Associate Professor, Department of Psychology and Neuroscience, University of Colorado Boulder; Director, CU CREST Lab
Peter GrosSenbacher, Ph.D., Associate Professor, BA Contemplative Psychology; Director, Consciousness Laboratory

7:35-7:55 - Questions from audience

7:55-8:00 - Closing (Charles G. Lief, President Naropa University)

Sponsored by:

Department of Psychology and Neuroscience, University of Colorado Boulder; College of Arts and Sciences, University of Colorado Boulder; Office of the Senior Assistant Vice Chancellor for Health and Wellness; and CU Bolder Outreach Award to Dr. Dimidjian from the Division of Outreach and Engagement, University of Colorado Boulder
Naropa University

Richard J. Davidson
Biographical Information
Richard J. Davidson is the William James and Vilas Professor of Psychology and Psychiatry, Director of the Waisman Laboratory for Brain Imaging and Behavior and the Laboratory for Affective Neuroscience, and Founder and Chair of the Center for Investigating Healthy Minds, at the Waisman Center, University of Wisconsin-Madison. He received his Ph.D. from Harvard University in Psychology and has been at Wisconsin since 1984. He has published more than 275 articles, many chapters and reviews and edited 13 books. He has been a member of the Mind and Life Institute's Board of Directors since 1991. He is also the author of the forthcoming book (with Sharon Begley) The Emotional Life of Your Brain to be published by Penguin in March of 2012.

He is the recipient of numerous awards for his research including a National Institute of Mental Health Research Scientist Award, a MERIT Award from NIMH, an Established Investigator Award from the National Alliance for Research in Schizophrenia and Affective Disorders (NARSAD), a Distinguished Investigator Award from NARSAD, the William James Fellow Award from the American Psychological Society, and the Hilldale Award from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He was the Founding Co-Editor of the new American Psychological Association journal EMOTION and is Past-President of the Society for Research in Psychopathology and of the Society for Psychophysiological Research. He was also the year 2000 recipient of the most distinguished award for science given by the American Psychological Association - the Distinguished Scientific Contribution Award.

In 2003 Davidson was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and in 2004 he was elected to the Wisconsin Academy of Sciences, Arts and Letters. In 2006, he was awarded the first Mani Bhaumik Award by UCLA for advancing the understanding of the brain and conscious mind in healing. Also in 2006, he was named one of the 100 most influential people in the world by Time magazine, and in 2007, Madison Magazine named him Person of the Year. In 2008, he founded the Center for Investigating Healthy Minds, a research center dedicated to the study of positive qualities, such as kindness and compassion. In 2011, he was given the Paul D. MacLean Award for Outstanding Neuroscience Research in Psychosomatic Medicine. He serves on the Scientific Advisory Board at the Max Planck Institute for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences in Leipzig from 2011-2017 and as Chair of the Psychology section of the American Association for the Advancement of Science from 2011-2013.

This event is FREE; however, registration is required.
To register, visit:


Cultivating Nourishing Sleep: A Community Conversation
Allison Harvey, Ph.D., University of California, Berkeley
Monique LeBourgeois, Ph.D., University of Colorado Boulder
Kenneth P. Wright, Ph.D., University of Colorado Boulder

Monday, July 28, 6-8 PM
CU Boulder Wolf Law Building, Rm 204 (Map)
Free and Open to the public

Join a community conversation with Dr. Allison Harvey, Professor of Psychology at University of California, Berkeley, and Dr. Monique LeBourgeois and Dr. Kenneth Wright Jr., from CU Boulder's Department of Integrative Physiology, to learn about healthy sleep across the life cycle.

Learn about the latest scientific research as Dr. LeBourgeois discusses sleep during early development, including infants, toddlers and adolescents, Dr. Wright discusses sleep during adulthood and aging, and Dr. Harvey discusses strategies for cultivating and sustaining healthy sleep, as well as when and where to get help when needed to support healthy sleep.

Following the lectures, we will hear from experts in our community working on cultivating healthy sleep.

Registration is free!
To register for this free event visit

  • To learn more about Dr. LeBourgeois's work click here.

  • To learn more about Dr. Wright's work click here.

  • To learn more about Dr. Harvey's work click here.

  • Effectively Treating Sleep Problems: Basics & Beyond
    A Workshop for Clinicians with
    Allison Harvey, Ph.D.
    Monday, July 28, 9 AM to 4:30 PM
    CU Boulder
    University Memorial Center, Rm 247 (Map)

    Dr. Allison Harvey, Professor of Psychology at the University of California, Berkeley, an international expert on the treatment of sleep problems, will be delivering a daylong continuing education workshop for clinicians in which she will teach how to effectively treat sleep problems using an empirically supported and transdiagnostic cognitive behavioral approach.

    Learning how to treat effectively sleep problems is important for practicing clinicians given that sleep disturbance is so common. Patients may present for treatment of sleep disturbance as their sole problem or as a comorbid problem with another medical or psychiatric condition. Persistent sleeping difficulties are associated with functional impairment, mood regulation and problem solving difficulties, increased work absenteeism, more health problems and heighten the risk of developing future comorbid health and psychiatric conditions.

    In this workshop, clinicians will learn about the major sleep disturbances, how to present an effective rationale for treating sleep problems, how to conduct a case conceptualization within a transdiagnostic framework, and how to use the nuts and bolts of CBT for sleep problems. Clinicians will leave the workshop with practical skills that they can apply with their patients to effectively treat sleep problems.

    The afternoon also will include time for case consultation on particularly challenging sleep problems. Please email if you would like to share in advance details about a case for Dr. Harvey's expert consultation.

    Please join us for this innovative training opportunity to enhance your clinical practice!

    Registration is required:
    $135 for professionals
    $95 for students, email for discount code

    To register, please visit:

    CEUs available upon request

    Coming Soon

    Keep an eye on this page for future Taking Action! lectures, addressing topics such as sleep, mindfulness meditation, and more!

    December 2014 - Cultivating a healthy mind through the practice of meditation

    For more information about this event or the Taking Action! lecture series, call (303) 492-7378 or email

    Past Events

    Helping Girls and Women Develop Healthy Body Image: A Community Conversation
    Thursday, April 17, 6-8 PM
    CU Boulder Wolf Law Building, Rm 206 (Map)
    Free and Open to the public

    This free lecture will feature Dr. Carolyn Becker, Professor of Psychology at Trinity University and a fellow of the Academy of Eating Disorders. Dr. Becker is nationally renowned for her leadership in developing and disseminating healthy body image and eating disorder prevention.

    "Think about all of the women and girls in your life...and think about how much time and energy and emotion [they] spend disliking their bodies... Image what we could do with all of that time, energy, emotion, and money if we were to have them be happy with their bodies." ~Dr. Carolyn Becker

    Join us to learn the latest psychological research about helping girls and women embrace a healthy body image and reduce body dissatisfaction. Learn ways to get free from an excessive focus on physical appearance and celebrate one's capacities and agency in the world. Following brief opening comments from Melody Fairchild, elite athlete and coach to many girls and women, Dr. Becker will discuss over a decade of research on developing and disseminating proven strategies to prevent eating disorders and develop healthy body image.

    After Dr. Becker's presentation, join us for a panel discussion including our own community experts and your questions and comments. Our panel includes counselors from Boulder Valley School District, the Eating Recovery Center in Denver, La Luna Center in Boulder, and CU faculty. If you have community resources for supporting girls and women, please also bring them to our resource table where we will be sharing materials with one another.

    Registration is free!
    To register, please visit:

    Helping Girls and Women Develop Healthy Body Image: A Workshop for Clinicians with Dr. Carolyn Becker
    Friday, April 18, 9:00 AM-12:30 PM
    CU Boulder University Memorial Center, Room 247 (Map)

    Body image concerns plague many girls and women, and some girls and women will struggle with full threshold or sub-threshold eating disorders. The Body Project, a cognitive dissonance-based prevention, is a body image improvement program that has been found to reduce onset of eating disorders in high school and college aged females.

    This workshop will introduce practicing clinicians to the dissonance approach, review the empirical support and existing research, and provide experiential training in delivering core components of The Body Project. Participants will learn brief and practical interventions that can be adapted to a variety of clinical formats to help girls and women develop healthy body image. Please join us for this innovative training opportunity to enhance your clinical practice!

    $95 for professionals
    $75 for students, email for discount code

    To register, please visit:

    CEUs available upon request
    Discounts available for BVSD Teachers K-12 and School Counselors.
    Email your name and title to

    Watch Dr. Becker's talk at TEDx San Antonio: Combating Body Dissatisfaction: The Destructive Impact

    For more information about the Body Project, visit

    For more information about Dr. Carolyn Becker, visit her webpage at Trinity University

    Suggested Readings by Dr. Becker:

    Perez, M., Becker, C. B., Ramirez-Cash, A. (2010). Transportability of an empirically supported dissonance-based prevention program for eating disorders. Body Image, 7, 179-186.

    Becker, C. B., Wilson, C. **, Williams, A. **, Kelly, M. **, McDaniel, L. **, & Elmquist, J. ** (2010). Peer-facilitated cognitive dissonance versus healthy weight eating disorders prevention: A randomized comparison. Body Image, 7, 280-288.

    Becker, C. B., McDaniel, L. **, Bull, S. **, Powell, M., & McIntyre, K. (2012). Can we reduce eating disorder risk factors in female college athletes? A randomized exploratory investigation of two peer-led interventions. Body Image, 9, 31-42.

    This is a public program. For more information, please visit the program website.


    On Campus

    • Muenzinger Psychology and Neuroscience
    • Wolf Law

    In Colorado

    • Boulder
    • Lafayette
    • Longmont
    • Louisville
    • Lyons

    Online Resource

    Program Partners

    • Dimidjian Lab, Department of Psychology and Neuroscience

    Sponsoring Units

    Arts & Sciences, College of

    • Psychology & Neuroscience, Department of

    Program Contact

    Christina Metcalf


    Topics Program Types Audiences
    • Community Resource
    • Education (Adult)
    • Humanities
    • Lecture Series
    • Popular Culture
    • Psychology
    • Recreation/Entertainment
    • Science
    • Community Development
    • Community Event
    • Public Lecture/Demonstration
    • Workshop
    • Adult Learners
    • Alumni/Parents/Friends
    • Families
    • General Public
    • Minority Group(s)
    • Rural Communities
    • Students - Elementary School
    • Students - High School
    • Students - Homeschooled
    • Students - Middle School
    • Teachers - Early Learning
    • Teachers - Elementary School
    • Teachers - High School
    • Teachers - Middle School


    Research, Conversation, Evidence-based Practices, Empowerment, Workshop, Body Image, Carolyn Becker, Psychology, Eating Disorders, Taking Action, Public Lecture, Sona Dimidjian, Sleep, CBT, Allison Harvey