Are you Happy?
(from newsletter March 2006)
Last week in Sydney, I had the opportunity to meet Dr. Martin Seligman, of Positive Psychololgy fame. Seligman spoke to over 1,200 people over 2 events.
Seligman's message includes: Happiness and well- being are the desired outcomes of Positive Psychology. Positive emotions are divided into 3 kinds: - from the past - satisfaction, contentment, pride, & serenity. - from the future - optimism, hope, confidence, trust, & faith. - from the present – 2 categories – pleasures & gratifications. Happiness also includes the idea that one’s life has been authentic. Authenticity describes the act of deriving gratification and positive emotion from the exercise of one’s signature strengths. Happiness comes from many routes. It becomes our life task to deploy our signature strengths and virtues in the major realms of living: work, love, parenting, and finding purpose. The book, Authentic Happiness focuses on experiencing your present, past, and future optimally, about discovering your signature strengths, and then about using them often in all endeavors that you value.
To really have the best happiest life possible, we need to focus on 3 different areas. 1. The pleasant life is a life that successfully pursues the positive emotions about the present, past and future. 2. The good life/engaged life is a life using your signature strengths to obtain abundant gratification in the main realms of your life. You are in the flow and time stops when you are doing what is right for you. 3. The meaningful life is a life using your signature strengths and virtues in the service of something much larger than you are. A full life combines all three. It consists of experiencing positive emotions about the past and future, savoring positive feelings from the pleasures, deriving abundant gratification from your signature strengths, and using these strengths in the service of something larger to obtain meaning.
Learn more by reading "Authentic Happiness" and visiting the website www.authentichappiness.com and do the signature strengths test. IT'S F-R-E- E and you will receive a great report telling you about your unique strengths.
Written by Barbara Anderson.
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