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What is Positive Psychology?
Positive Psychology is the scientific study of optimal human functioning and what makes life worth living. In other words, it is the psychology of characteristics, conditions and processes which lead to flourishing. Researching what goes right for individuals, communities and organizations is every bit as important to us as understanding what goes wrong. It is the empirical evidence for thriving. How can we use this empirical research to improve the well-being.
Some of the topics such as optimism, motivation, emotional intelligence, etc. has been studied for many years before positive psychology came along. Gratitude, hope and curiosity are many other areas of positive psychology which were not studied in detail. Since last 50+ years, psychology is being studied for all the negative areas such as genetic disorders, diseases - depression, anxiety, PTSD, etc. It has seldom been studied for the purpose of thriving. The focus of positive psychology is more on the way human beings can coexist in a amicable and happy environment.
Origin of Positive Psychology
Positive Psychology originated from the University of Pennsylvania which now has a center of Positive Psychology. The movement of this field began in early 1998. It started with publishing new journals, forming associations and recognizing positive psychology as a formal branch of psychology. There had been a movement in the UK to create a public posily around well-being.
I applied for this Posotove Psychology test about 8-9 years back when one of my friend bought me a course book he was studying. This course ware was on the topic of Positive Psychology. I found it very interesting. In this book there was a brief assignment in which we have to write our own experience with positivity in our lives. We have to write a personal portfolio about our own well-being taking clues from the experiences we have from the some of the positive psychology experiences. Let us get going.
1. First of all, get hold of a notebook to use as a wellbeing journal in which you will record all the activities you try and how you get on with them.
2. Consider assessing your current level of well being using one of the many happiness, well being or life satisfaction questionnaire available. There are many questionnaires available online on the Positive Psychology Center.
Four Question General Happiness Scale
Five question Satisfaction with life scale
24 Question Authentic Happiness Inventory
You will get the score right away and the journal will help you learn a great deal from your personal reflections.
3. Do some of the activities listed in this site. Each activity poses questions on different topics which you might like.
4. After you perform the above activities, you need to re-assess yourself for well being using the same questionaire used in Step 2. Take a note of the positive changes which these activities bring in your life.