What Positive Psychology Means to Me
Psychology was by far and away my favourite subject at senior school, and although my career, through and post university, took me in a different direction, I never lost my intense interest in, and passion for everything Psychologically-based. Relating to people and understanding what makes them tick has long held enormous appeal. It is for this reason, that not so long ago, I reconnected with Psychology in a formal academic sense and engrossed myself in an MSc. I rediscovered my zest for learning, as well as being captivated by the idea that so much of human experience is constructed through emotions and active engagement with others and our environment.
Something was missing though. Something about the traditional take on Psychology just wasn’t sitting right for me. That was, until I was introduced to Positive Psychology. Suddenly everything fell into place – and just like the great Martin Seligman says is true for so many, it felt like a calling. The idea that every individual, no matter what their life circumstances, has the power and resources to enhance their experience of life and to flourish not merely ‘get by’, is immensely inspiring.
Since that first introduction I have devoured books and research articles, attended workshops and seminars, and sought out and connected with all kinds of people involved in Positive Psychology. But more than this, I have personally embraced the principles of Positive Psychology, integrating them into my everyday life. That’s one of the things that’s so fantastic about Positive Psychology – it’s so applied and highly practical – its not just a bunch of dusty theories languishing in a research lab. The people at the vanguard of the Positive Psychology movement truly believe it should be ‘lived’ and are passionate about making it accessible for all. Through living and breathing it in this way, I have reaped the benefits, finding more joy in the little things in life, experiencing deeper and more meaningful social connections and developing a more resilient and optimistic outlook. I know it works – not just because there’s abundant research evidence to support it, but because I’ve experienced its transformational effects for myself.
I am a convert and an advocate and am deeply committed to expanding my own knowledge and skills in order to create initiatives which can help others to achieve their potential and to thrive – at school, at work and at play.
Nikki Ayles (Young) greenwoodorchid.com
‘We Are The Positive Psychology People’