The feeling of the brand should be contemporary, clean, light, simple, beautiful, interconnected, iconic and fun with just enough of an organic sense to seem alive and just enough seriousness to seem real.
We want to attract people to our app who are naturally happy, positive people with strong emotional skills/intelligence. They will use our app so that they can become happier, further understand their moods and motivations, and help others become happier, too. It's not that we don't want sad/depressed people to use the app to get happier, but since the app will connect people through social networks and create a community of sorts it is critical that we have happy people as early adopters. So the logo needs to have positive energy without over-selling.
Recent scientific research into happiness and the brain paves the way for a pragmatic approach to becoming happier that focuses on behaviors and skills rather than spirituality/religion and sickness/pharmaceuticals. As such the logo should not draw from overtly religious/mystic or scientific/clinical themes.
Our early adopters are likely to be 30 to 40-year-old North American women, although it is important that the brand is sufficiently masculine to appeal to men with an interest in emotional well-being, and sufficiently abstract/universal to appeal globally.
Incorporating the meaning of the name into the brand is important if possible, but not necessarily in an overtly literal way. The name Wahanegi comes from the first two letters of primary human motivators: Want. Have. Need. Give. Those motivators also loosely map to stages of life, where younger people are more focused on wanting new experiences, family/working-age people on managing what they have, middle-aged people on what they really need, and older people on giving back. To that end, I have played around on paper with logos that use the letters WHNG, some using the literal letters in a 2x2 grid and others that are much more abstract and mostly hint at the letters, but nothing really struck my fancy. I'm sure you can do better if you go that route.
The product will be a mobile app with accompanying website, so it is critical that the logo look good as an app icon on iPhone/iPad and Android as well as on the web. It will regularly be used with Facebook as well as Twitter, Google+ and LinkedIn, so it should be distinctive from those logos but not appear out of place beside them.
The app itself will have game-like aspects, with a point system to encourage repeat use and spur competition. The points will also be used by the company to donate to non-profits on behalf of people who use the app based on the points they earn, either one grain of rice, two grams of carbon, 10 milliseconds of education or 1 millisecond of scientific research per point. Maybe there is some inspiration there.
Finally, taking a deep breath makes you calm, raising your arms in triumph makes you more confident, and smiling makes you happy. So do those three things before you start the design. It's like using your body to hack into your brain, and you'll do better work as a result. ;-)
Thanks in advance.