All the evidence that we have indicates that it is reasonable to assume in practically every human being, and certainly in almost every newborn baby, that there is an active will toward health, an impulse towards growth, or towards the actualization. Abraham Maslow
“Positive Psychology is the scientific study of the strengths that enable individuals and communities to thrive. The field is founded on the belief that people want to lead meaningful and fulfilling lives, to cultivate what is best within themselves, and to enhance their experiences of love, work, and play.” (The Positive Psychology Centre)
Applied positive psychology is the practical application of evidence based positive psychology interventions. This includes positive health interventions, focusing on promoting people’s health assets – strengths that can promote health and living longer.
The science of happiness includes positive neurosciences, positive health as well as environmental health. Maslow called his work positive psychology, and developed a list of “being” values that are generated through near-peak experiences where we experience “awe”.
Happiness is a unique burst of positive emotions that is also experienced as a sense of being “whole” in body, mind, soul and heart.
We are wired for happiness… This is why
Positive neurosciences and the research on the value of positive emotions show us that positive emotions broaden and build our cognitive and creative capacity.
Our search for Happiness causes us to search for pleasure, joy and for that which relieves suffering…which we gain through self-care and care of others. In the search for the good life millions of people transform themselves, their lives, communities and their environment as they deepen their understanding of the inter-connectedness of their happiness and that of the world around them. Happiness is at its’ optimum when it is shared.
“ Confucius taught a new way of finding the meaningful life through the cultivation of jen. A person of jen, Confucius observes, ‘wishing to establish her own character, also establishes the character of others’. A person of jen ‘brings the good things of others to completion and does not bring the bad things of others to completion’. Jen is felt in that deeply satisfying moment when you bring out the goodness in others.” Dacher Keltner
The state of awe, which is when we have an experience that is beyond what our best positive self could have imagined, has been demonstrated to provide enormous benefits for creativity as well as the desire and motivation to spread good feelings to others – spontaneously. During “a state of feeling awe where we experience ourselves as powerful, charismatic humans, our experiences in nature – are all founded on the sense of vastness and transcendence of the world” such “vastness becomes awe-inspiring when it requires accommodation – the process by which we update and change our core beliefs.” (Dacher Keltner)
The search for happiness is a natural and healthy state and pursuit for the mind, body, heart and soul, and essential for vitality and change agility. We are at long last be able to let go of outdated mental models that that humans are inherently flawed, and that the search for happiness for ourselves, for our loved ones, at work, our teams and communities is “inappropriate” or idealistic, best left to those with rose-tinted glasses.