What Positive Psychology Means to Me
Positive psychology is a great field to work in because I find that I’m constantly getting confronted with the upside of things; what is right and what is going well.
Much like Martin Seligman confesses in his book ‘Learned Optimism’, I wasn’t always looking for what was going right in my life and trying to ameliorate (and focus on) these things. Instead my default mode was to look for what was wrong. I was essentially a fault-finder, and still can be if the situation asks for it. However, if you are involved in the field long enough, you’ll automatically start to develop a healthy positivity bias that allows you to have a realistic outlook on life, which default mode is geared towards the positive.
The insights that science of positive psychology have provided me with have heavily influenced my lifestyle, interactions with other people, decision-making process and my overal well-being. What I think that contributed most to this is that I wasn’t just following some random advice from self-help books or the like, but that I got a sense of why certain interventions, or ways of doing things, repeatedly get a certain outcome. It’s like you’re learning about the mechanism that guides your everyday behaviour and slowly discovering how to master it, instead of the other way around. This, in my opinion, is invaluable.