A leading voice in the world
of positive psychology & the science of flourishing,
Emiliya Zhivotovskaya
is a widely sought-after speaker,
educator, facilitator & coach.

“Emiliya offers that astonishingly rare blend of deep insight, wisdom beyond her years, a fierce grounding in science and the heart of a teacher.”
– Jonathan Fields, award-winning author & founder of Good Life Project

the list:

Emiliya Zhivotovskaya


  • Currently: Working towards a PhD in Mind-Body Medicine at Saybrook University
  • Master’s of Applied Positive Psychology, University of Pennsylvania, PA
  • Bachelor’s of Arts in Psychology, Long Island University, with Minors in Fine Art, Business and Philosophy

Location: New York City

Professional Experience
Emiliya is the CEO and founder of The Flourishing Center, a New York City based Benefit Corporation (B-Corp) that is dedicated to increasing the flourishing of individuals, organizations, and communities world wide. She is the creator of the acclaimed Certification in Applied Positive Psychology (CAPP) program offered in 11 cities across the U.S., Canada and online worldwide which has trained over 700 practitioners to date. She is the creator the Bounce Back BetterTM (B3) Program, Positive Psychology Coaching Certification, Flourishing Skills Group® (FSG®) Program, creator of the iMMi Program, co-founder of the Positive Educator CertificationTM (PEC) Program, creator of the PERMA-V Model and the 5i Change Agent Model. (If you haven’t noticed, she likes creating and is an “inventor” in our 5i Change Agent Model.)

Emiliya holds a Master’s Degree from the University of Pennsylvania in Positive Psychology and is currently pursuing her Ph.D. in Mind-Body Medicine from Saybrook University, where she is also an adjunct faculty member. Emiliya holds a PCC credential with the International Coaching Federation (ICF), as well as over a dozen certifications in modalities ranging from coaching to yoga, Reiki, intenSati, Thai massage, biofeedback, motivational interviewing and more. Prior to her work in the science of wellbeing, Emiliya was a professional party entertainer. Thus, she refers to herself as an edu-tain-ial pra-cademic-prenuer; she educates in a way that entertains and enables people to connect socially to each other, and her approach fuses her background first and foremost as a practitioner, then a researcher and academic, as well as her extensive career in business as an entrepreneur. She integrates these tools into a unique approach to vitality and mind-body health, inspiring and empowering others to craft a life of thriving.

My story:
At the age of 5, my family and I fled Kiev for New York City during the fall of communism and following the nuclear disaster in Chernobyl. Moving to a new country at such a young age came with unique challenges. However, as an immigrant kid, I wholeheartedly learned to not take the opportunities I was given for granted. My parents sacrificed everything they had so their son and daughter could have a better life.

When I was 14, I experienced the sudden loss of my brother when he drowned trying to save his fiancé’s life. He was 24 when he died. In addition to the love and support of friends and family members, one of the things that influence my healing was participating in bereavement groups at school. The love and compassion of the psychologists at school began my healing, and it was further accelerated when I was able to help others who had experienced loss to heal, simply with my ability to empathize and relate. I knew then that helping people thrive despite pain and adversity was part of my life purpose. By the age of 15 I was already a trained peer mediator, trained natural helper, and active member of a bereavement group.

Years later, my mother died after a decade long battle with ovarian cancer. Helping her navigate her health and looking for alternative sources of healing left me with a passion for understanding how to care for the mind-and-body. I recognized that there was a relationship between my mother’s loss and the physical dis-ease in her body. That led to a 15 year journey of mastering the mind-and-body; studying with some of the most exceptional teachers on the planet, learning everything I could get my hands on that could help people live happier and healthier lives, trying these skills out on my own, and then sharing them with others.

Within these challenges, I easily see that I could have given up, blamed the world, and walked away from a life of joy, happiness and possibility. Instead, I found awakening, strength, and a renewed sense of gratitude. It was these experiences that created a relentless desire to understand where happiness and the ability to thrive comes from, and then find a way to share these skills with others to help them flourish.

I started The Flourishing Center in 2008. To be honest, I had no clue what it was going to be. I knew that I wanted to speak, teach, and coach, and that I NEEDED to bring these skills to the masses. What started out as 2-3 person Meetup groups has spread into a Flourishing Movement. Everyday I feel the spiritual influence of my mother and my brother as I work endlessly to get these tools in the hands of the people that need them most. I am grateful and humbled that I get to activate my purpose, and I am forever inspired by the work of our community members in how they take the tools we give them and put them into action. Together, we ARE changing the world. Namaste.

Favorite Quote:
“I am of the opinion that my life belongs to the community, and as long as I live, it is my privilege to do for it whatever I can. I want to be thoroughly used up when I die, for the harder I work, the more I live. Life is no ‘brief candle’ to me. It is a sort of splendid torch which I have got hold of for a moment, and I want to make it burn as brightly as possible before handing it on to the future generations.”
― George Bernard Shaw

Words of Wisdom:

Self-awareness enables self-compassion, which enables self-care, which furthers self-awareness.

My Morning Ritual:
Some combination of water, pet feeding, coffee, meditation, exercise (yoga or crossfit), journaling/task outlining, pulling a tarot card for the day, oh and snuggling with my sweetie. (The order of which varies.)

A Little Known Fact About Me…
I’m an avid crossfitter, yogi and watercolor painter. I have a cat named Buddy and a dog named Dora.

Ready to chat? Let’s Connect.