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2 Minnesota cities are getting happy through a first-of-its-kind health project

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Residents in two western Twin Cities suburbs are getting happy through a first-of-its-kind program.

It's called the Bounce Back Project, a community effort that aims to promote health through happiness.

It's based off the studies of Dr. Brian Sexton, an associate professor of psychiatry at Duke University, who says teaching people resiliency and the skills needed to "bounce back" from the stresses of everyday life will make them happier – and in turn, healthier.

"Being able to see the good that is there is tricky, it's not something that comes naturally, but it is a skill that can be developed," Sexton said, according to KSTP.

Sexton spoke about the project Tuesday to students at Buffalo High School, which became the first high school ever to participate in this new happiness study, KSTP reports. He also presented the program to people in Monticello at a Get Happy event.

Residents in both communities are encouraged to participate in Sexton's two-week study, which begins Nov. 2. And anyone living outside of Buffalo or Monticello who'd like to try it are welcome to sign up, KARE 11 notes.

Participants will respond to a daily email or text message with three things that made them happy that day, according to the study's website. Doing this has had positive results among health care workers and the hope is those results can be expanded to the wider community, reports note.

The Bounce Back project comes from a partnership with Allina Health, Buffalo/Monticello Clinics and CentraCare Health, the program's website says. The clinic and hospital systems spent roughly $60,000 on this initiative, KSTP says.

For more information on the study and how to sign up, click here.

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