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Positive psychology.

Update: 2019.


2019 Table of contents.

■ 2019 — 1. 2019 Introduction: Issues in psychology.

▣ 2019 — 1.1 Issues with replicability in psychology.

▣ 2019 — 1.2 Issues over statistical significance.

▣ 2019 — 1.3 Psychology in Crisis.

▣ 2019 — 1.4 References pertinent to 2019 — 1.

■ 2019 — 2. Positive psychology: Update.

▣ 2019 — 2.1 Overview.

▣ 2019 — 2.2 Science: breakthroughs or bankrupt?

▣ 2019 — 2.3 Seligman update.

▣ 2019 — 2.4 Fredrickson debacle.

▣ 2019 — 2.5 References pertinent to the Fredrickson debacle.

▣ 2019 — 2.6 Positive psychology in education.

▣ 2019 — 2.7 References pertinent to positive psychology in education.

▣ 2019 — 2.8 PP 2.0 or 'second wave' PP (SWPP): The second wave of positive psychology.

▣ 2019 — 2.9 References pertinent to positive psychology in general, including PP 2.0, 2012—2019.


Table of contents: 2012 and before.



■ 2019 — 1. Introduction: Issues in psychology.

▣ In this update I am not going to go into the depth that I did in my 2012 review. I am not going to provide a review of the pertinent literature for each topic. I'm going to briefly highlight a number of issues and provide relevant references, grouped by topic, so that the reader can explore independently.

▣ In psychology, in general, two issues have come up that are receiving major attention: replication and statistical significance.



▣ 2019 — 1.1 Issues with replicability in psychology.

⧈ Perhaps the largest study on reproducibility in psychology is provided by Aarts, Anderson, Attridge, Attwood, Axt, Babel, J., … (2015, p. 943). "We conducted replications of 100 experimental and correlational studies published in three psychology journals using high-powered designs and original materials when available. … collectively these results offer a clear conclusion: A large portion of replications produced weaker evidence for the original findings despite using materials provided by the original authors, review in advance for methodological fidelity, and high statistical power to detect the original effect sizes. Moreover, correlational evidence is consistent with the conclusion that variation in the strength of initial evidence (such as original P value) was more predictive of replication success than variation in the characteristics of the teams conducting the research (such as experience and expertise). The latter factors certainly can influence replication success, but they did not appear to do so here"

⧈ Other standout articles are: Flis, (2019); Lilienfeld, (2017); Shrout, and Rodgers, (2018).



▣ 2019 — 1.2 Issues over statistical significance.

⧈ The use of significance testing is being questioned in broader scientific research. For example, Amrhein, Greenland, & McShane, (2019, p. 306) stated: "Unfortunately, the false belief that crossing the threshold of statistical significance is enough to show that a result is 'real' has led scientists and journal editors to privilege such results, thereby distorting the literature. Statistically significant estimates are biased upwards in magnitude and potentially to a large degree, whereas statistically non-significant estimates are biased downwards in magnitude. Consequently, any discussion that focuses on estimates chosen for their significance will be biased." … "we are not advocating a ban on P values, confidence intervals or other statistical measures—only that we should not treat them categorically. This includes dichotomization as statistically significant or not, as well as categorization based on other statistical measures such as Bayes factors."

⧈ For an excellent up-to-date general introduction to the area, see the special issue devoted to the topic: Kmetz, (2019) and Wasserstein, Schirm, & Lazar, (2019).

⧈ In terms of psychology, an excellent article is by Lambdin, (2012, p. 67), who states: "This paper will revisit and summarize the arguments of those who have been trying to tell us for more than 70 years—that p values are not empirical. If these arguments are sound, then the continuing popularity of significance tests in our peer-reviewed journals is at best embarrassing and at worst intellectually dishonest."



▣ 2019 — 1.3 Psychology in Crisis.

⧈ I have included this third topic as I'm going to be suggesting that the emphasis on positive psychology over the last 20 years should represent a major existential threat to psychology as a profession and certainly should provoke a crisis response. If you look at the literature, it would seem that psychology is in perennial crisis. Again, I will not review the literature in detail but will provide some highlighted examples.

⧈ The topic of psychology in crisis has received a number of book length treatments—for example, Dawes, (1993); Hughes, (2018); and Kagan, (2012). Representative articles include: Bakan, (1996); Dafermos, (2015); Goertzen, (2008); Henriques & Cobb, [Special issue] (2004); Henriques, [Special issue] (2005); Sturm & Mülberger, [Special section] (2012); and Wieser, (2016). For a comprehensive historical treatment see Sturm & Mülberger, (2012), an introduction to a special section on the history of psychology in crises. Goertzen, (2008, p. 637) stated: “I cannot review all of the existing literature on the crisis [in psychology] in this paper. Speaking from experience, I can safely say that such a review literally requires a booklength treatment.”



▣ 2019 — 1.4 References pertinent to 2019 — 1.


Aarts, A., Anderson, J., Attridge, C., Attwood, P., Axt, A., Babel, J., &… (2015). Estimating the reproducibility of psychological science. Science, 943-943. https://doi.org/10.1126/science.aac4716

Anderson, Bahník, Barnett-Cowan, Bosco, Chandler, Chartier, . . . Anderson, Christopher J. (2016). Response to Comment on Estimating the reproducibility of psychological science. Science, 351(6277), https://doi.org/1037.10.1126/science.aad9163

Baker, M. (2016). 1,500 scientists lift the lid on reproducibility. Nature, 533(7604), 452–454. https://doi.org/10.1038/533452a

Bartlett, T. (2018). I Want to Burn Things to the Ground. The Chronicle of Higher Education, 1-11. Retrieved from https://www.chronicle.com/article/I-Want-to-Burn-Things-to/244488?key=ONA-J8qTe05O7njbTd0tJxVPc8Wh8rPZLgfV3j9qtQvPw_NSaQoPLX5LOtOxfok8TDJSbDZYakViRTN1RW9qdjFKT1BZUUJTc3dBUjM0N1AyRlFJV2dnVzEyQQ

Donnellan, M. B., & Lucas, R. E. (2018). Introduction to the special issue - A replication project in personality psychology. Journal of Research in Personality, 72, 1-4. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jrp.2017.11.004

Flis, I. (2019). Psychologists psychologizing scientific psychology: An epistemological reading of the replication crisis. Theory and Psychology, 29(2), 158-181. https://doi.org/10.1177/0959354319835322

Freese, J., & Peterson, D. (2017). Replication in social science. Annual Review of Sociology, 43(1), 147-165. https://doi.org/10.1146/annurev-soc-060116-053450

Gilbert, D., King, G., Pettigrew, S., & Wilson, T. (2016). Comment on Estimating the reproducibility of psychological science. Science, 351(6277), 1037. https://doi.org/10.1126/science.aad7243

John, L. K., Loewenstein, G., & Prelec, D. (2012). Measuring the prevalence of questionable research practices with incentives for truth telling. Psychological Science, 23(5), 524–532. https://doi.org/10.1177/0956797611430953

Laws, K. R. (2016). Psychology, replication & beyond. BMC Psychology, 4(1), 2-9. https://doi.org/10.1186/s40359-016-0135-2

Lilienfeld, S. O. (2017). Psychology's replication crisis and the grant culture: Righting the ship. Perspectives on Psychological Science, 12(4), 660-664. https://doi.org/10.1177/1745691616687745

Maxwell, S. E., Lau, M. Y., & Howard, G. S. (2015). Is psychology suffering from a replication crisis? What does "failure to replicate" really mean? American Psychologist, 70(6), 487-498. https://doi.org/10.1037/a0039400

Pashler, H., & Wagenmakers, E.-J. (2012). Editors' introduction to the special section on replicability in psychological science: A crisis of confidence? [Special section] Perspectives on Psychological Science, 7, 528-530. http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/1745691612465253

Shrout, P. E., & Rodgers, J. L. (2018). Psychology, science, and knowledge construction: Broadening perspectives from the replication crisis. Annual Review of Psychology, 69(1), 487-510. https://doi.org/10.1146/annurev-psych-122216-011845

Tackett, J. L., Brandes, C. M., King, K. M., & Markon, K. E. (2019). Psychology's replication crisis and clinical psychological science. Annual Review of Clinical Psychology, 15(1), 579-604. https://doi.org/10.1146/annurev-clinpsy-050718-095710

Statistical Significance.

Amrhein, V., & Mcshane, B. (2019). It's time to talk about ditching statistical significance. Nature, 567(7748), 283-283. https://doi.org/10.1038/d41586-019-00874-8

Amrhein, V., Greenland, S., & McShane, B. (2019). Scientists rise up against statistical significance. Nature, 567(7748), 305-307. https://doi.org/10.1038/d41586-019-00857-9

Denworth, L. (2019, October). A Significant Problem Standard scientific methods are under fire. Will anything change? Scientific American, 63-67.

García-Pérez, M. A. (2017). Thou shalt not bear false witness against null hypothesis significance testing. Educational and Psychological Measurement, 77(4), 631-662. https://doi.org/10.1177/0013164416668232

Greenland, S., Senn, S. J., Rothman, K. J., Carlin, J. B., Poole, C., Goodman, S. N., & Altman, D. G. (2016). Statistical tests, P values, confidence intervals, and power: A guide to misinterpretations. European Journal of Epidemiology, 31(4), 337-350. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10654-016-0149-3

Kmetz, J. L. (2019). Correcting corrupt research: Recommendations for the profession to stop misuse of p-Values. American Statistician, 73(sup1), 36-45. https://doi.org/10.1080/00031305.2018.1518271

Krawczyk, M. (2015). The search for significance: A few peculiarities in the distribution of p values in experimental psychology literature. PLOS ONE, 10(6), e0127872. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0127872

Lambdin, C. (2012). Significance tests as sorcery: Science is empirical-significance tests are not. Theory & Psychology, 22(1), 67-90. https://doi.org/10.1177/0959354311429854

Nickerson, R. S. (2000). Null hypothesis significance testing: A review of an old and continuing controversy. Psychological Methods, 5(2), 241-301. https://doi.org/10.1037/1082-989X.5.2.241

Spreckelsen, T. F. (2018). Editorial: Changes in the field: Banning p-values (or not), transparency, and the opportunities of a renewed discussion on rigorous (quantitative) research. Child and Adolescent Mental Health, 23(2), 61-62. https://doi.org/10.1111/camh.12277

Wasserstein, R. L., Schirm, A. L., & Lazar, N. A. (2019). Moving to a world beyond "p < 0.05." American Statistician, 73(sup1), 1-19. https://doi.org/10.1080/00031305.2019.1583913

Crisis in Psychology.

Bakan, D. (1996). The crisis in psychology. Journal of Social Distress and the Homeless, 5(4), 335-342. https://doi.org/10.1007/BF02092909

Dafermos, M. (2015). Rethinking the crisis in social psychology: A dialectical perspective. Social and Personality Psychology Compass, 9(8), 394-405. https://doi.org/10.1111/spc3.12187

Dawes, R. M. (1993). House of cards: Psychology and psychotherapy built on myth. New York: Free Press.

Goertzen, J. R. (2008). On the possibility of unification: The reality and nature of the crisis in psychology. Theory & Psychology, 18(6), 829-852. https://doi.org/10.1177/0959354308097260

Henriques, G. R. (2005). A new vision for the field: Introduction to the second special issue on the unified theory. Journal of Clinical Psychology, 61(1), 3–6. https://doi.org/10.1002/jclp.20087

Henriques, G. R., & Cobb, H. C. (2004). Introduction to the special issues on the unified theory. Journal of Clinical Psychology, 60(12), 1203–1205. https://doi.org/10.1002/jclp.20060

Hughes, B. M. (2018). Psychology in crisis. London: Palgrave.

Kagan, J. (2012). Psychology's ghosts: The crisis in the profession and the way back. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press.

Sturm, T., & Mülberger, A. (2012). Crisis discussions in psychology: New historical and philosophical perspectives. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C: Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences, 43(2), 425-433. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.shpsc.2011.11.001

Wieser, M. (2016). Psychology's "crisis" and the need for reflection. A plea for modesty in psychological theorizing. Integrative Psychological and Behavioral Science, 50(3), 359-367. https://doi.org/10.1007/s12124-016-9343-9



■ 2019 — 2. Positive psychology: Update.

▣ 2019 — 2.1 Overview.

⧈ It seems to me that on the whole the positive psychology movement looks more and more like just another hollow fad. I hope it isn't for the sake of psychology but, as far as I can see, there's no reason to see light at the end of the tunnel. I've included a section above on crisis in psychology because, in my opinion, what we see going on with the positive psychology movement certainly deserves a crisis-level response to right the course of psychology.

In terms of the issue of science versus fad we need to return to the beginning:

 "A decade later, the 'third way' heralded by Abraham Maslow, Carl Rogers, and other humanistic psychologists promised to add a new perspective to the entrenched clinical and behaviorist approaches. The generous humanistic vision had a strong effect on the culture at large and held enormous promise. Unfortunately, humanistic psychology did not attract much of a cumulative empirical base, and it spawned myriad therapeutic self-help movements. In some of its incarnations, it emphasized the self and encouraged a self-centeredness that played down concerns for collective well-being. Future debate will determine whether this came about because Maslow and Rogers were ahead of their times, because these flaws were inherent in their original vision, or because of overly enthusiastic followers. However, one legacy of the humanism of the 1960s is prominently displayed in any large bookstore: The 'psychology' section contains at least 10 shelves on crystal healing, aromatherapy, and reaching the inner child for every shelf of books that tries to uphold some scholarly standard" (Seligman & Csikszentmihalyi, 2000 p. 7). Ironically, Seligman's own books, in particular, Flourish (2011) and The Hope Circuit (2018b) certainly take a prominent place on the same shelf.

One of the key impressions I have of positive psychology is that it is extremely reductionistic and flattens out emotions, only emphasizing one side of the emotional spectrum. This quote illustrates my concern:  "The positive, optimistic attitude that Seligman associates with achievement, success and happiness (and which he exemplifies with a successful insurance salesman—see Seligman, 2006, Chapter 6) seems moreover to pre-suppose a very narrow range of emotional response. Indeed, one might argue that it is the mark of wisdom and maturity, of an appreciation of the mysteries, tragedies and ironies of life, not to respond unambiguously positively or negatively, optimistically or pessimistically, to any given situation. The model of mental health depicted by positive psychology turns out to be little more than a caricature of an extravert—a bland, shallow, goal-driven careerist whose positive attitudes, certainties and ‘high self-esteem’ mask the fact that he lacks the very qualities that would enable him to attain a degree of true self-knowledge or wisdom, and to really grow as a human being.…The danger is that instead of fostering the true learning that develops self-knowledge and wisdom, and instead of considering the social and political measures that might really improve people’s circumstances, positive psychology offers a substitute recipe for success, achievement and happiness that ultimately has no substance at all" (Miller, 2008, p. 606). This certainly seems to represent a caricature of what a fully authentic human being represents.

⧈ "The Western world has been introduced to, and increasingly troubled by, the idea of positive psychology and the life-story of its founder Martin Seligman for some time. In 2018, Forbes magazine published an article titled Positive Psychology Is Garbage (And Why You Should Follow Its Founder's Lead). The author of this piece, Michael Schein, tried to trace the troubled genealogy of Martin Seligman's career in the field of psychology, claiming that 'only a true marketing wizard could transform his image from that of a guy best known for torturing dogs into the world's foremost apostle of happiness'. This quote perhaps sums up the direction of inquiry that this and other scientific and philosophical papers have recently take on positive psychology" (Peters & Tesar, 2019, p. 1).



▣ 2019 — 2.2 Science: breakthroughs or bankrupt?

⧈ One of the founding pillars of positive psychology was the idea that it be based on rigourous scientific study. “The authors outline a framework for a science of positive psychology, point to gaps in our knowledge, and predict that the next century will see a science and profession that will come to understand and build the factors that allow individuals, communities, and societies to flourish” (Seligman & Csikszentmihalyi, 2000, p. 5). Seligman threw down the gauntlet: “In discussing the future impact of positive psychology, we need to emphasize the qualification ‘if successful.’ Ten years from now, what criteria might we use to judge whether this fledgling movement, begun in 1998, succeeded? The first criterion is surely serious scientific discovery. Neither the present science nor the mere addition of well-intentioned armchair tracts (e.g., this one) about the importance of positivity will be sufficient to generate a field we would count as successful” (Seligman & Peterson, 2003, p. 306).

Has the goal of making positive psychology scientific been successful?

The following quote captures my position and answers the question in the negative: “Since its advent as a relatively new subdiscipline, positive psychology has claimed superiority to its precursor, the subdiscipline of humanistic psychology, in terms of supposedly both using more rigorous science and avoiding popularizing nonsense. The debunking of the critical positivity ratio demonstrates that positive psychology did not live up to these claims, and this has important implications, which are discussed in terms of ‘romantic scientism’ and ‘voodoo science.’ In addition, articles in the special issue on the Implications of Debunking the ‘Critical Positivity Ratio for Humanistic Psychology’ are introduced, as they also delve into these concerns” (Friedman & Brown, 2018, pp. 239-240).

⧈ [Begin quote] Meanwhile, Seligman has a website at www.authentichappiness.sas.upenn.edu/home, named after one of his popular books and containing a wealth of questionnaires, tools, and other material explicitly branded as positive psychology. The front page has the following invitation:

Feeling Blue? Take a Facebook quiz to get your personal depression score and a set of depression-related words you use in your social-media status updates.

[quote continues] The underlying message of these and other websites is unmistakeable. Feeling a little down today? Now we can use a scientific test to tell you whether you are as happy as you thought you were. And guess what? You’re not.You could be flourishing but you’re languishing, your mental health is incomplete and sub-optimal, the ratio of your emotions is all wrong.You need to do something about that! And by a stroke of luck, we have the solution right here, at the bargain price of … [End quote] (Thompson, 2018, p. 75)

⧈  This page-long quote sets the stage for Seligman to promote himself as not only a scientist, but a conservative one, with no time for "pop psychology." The quote also illustrates a motivation of Seligman's to create positive psychology—as he puts it here, he found dealing with people who have problems a depressing drag.

[Begin quote] This book will help you flourish.

There, I have finally said it.

I have spent my professional life avoiding unguarded promises like this one. I am a research scientist, and a conservative one at that. The appeal of what I write comes from the fact that it is grounded in careful science: statistical tests, validated questionnaires, thoroughly researched exercises, and large, representative samples. In contrast to pop psychology and the bulk of self-improvement, my writings are believable because of the underlying science.

My thinking about the goal of psychology has changed since I published my last book (Authentic Happiness, 2002) and, even better, psychology itself is also changing. I have spent most of my life working on psychology’s venerable goal of relieving misery and uprooting the disabling conditions of life. Truth be told, this can be a drag. Taking the psychology of misery to heart—as you must when you work on depression, alcoholism, schizophrenia, trauma, and the panoply of suffering that makes up psychology-as-usual’s primary material—can be a vexation to the soul. While we do more than our bit to increase the well-being of our clients, psychology-as-usual typically does not do much for the well-being of its practitioners. If anything changes in the practitioner, it is a personality shift toward depression.

I have been part of a tectonic upheaval in psychology called positive psychology, a scientific and professional movement. In 1998, as president of the American Psychological Association (APA), I urged psychology to supplement its venerable goal with a new goal: exploring what makes life worth living and building the enabling conditions of a life worth living. The goal of understanding well-being and building the enabling conditions of life is by no means identical with the goal of understanding misery and undoing the disabling conditions of life. At this moment, several thousand people around the world work in this field and are striving to further these goals. This book narrates their story, or at least the public face of their story.

The private face also needs to be shown. Positive psychology makes people happier. Teaching positive psychology, researching positive psychology, using positive psychology in practice as a coach or therapist, giving positive psychology exercises to tenth graders in a classroom, parenting little kids with positive psychology, teaching drill sergeants how to teach about post-traumatic growth, meeting with other positive psychologists, and just reading about positive psychology all make people happier. The people who work in positive psychology are the people with the highest well-being I have ever known.

The content itself—happiness, flow, meaning, love, gratitude, accomplishment, growth, better relationships—constitutes human flourishing. Learning that you can have more of these things is life changing. Glimpsing the vision of a flourishing human future is life changing.

And so this book will increase your well-being—and it will help you flourish [End quote] Seligman (2011, pp. 1-2).

 Interested readers should consult Wong's review of this book (Wong, 2011a).

⧈ [Begin quote] Given positive psychology’s insistence that its science is the basis for its superiority, it is ironic that a number of prominent positive psychologists have been tarnished by scandals involving shoddy science or ethical lapses. Self-aggrandizing claims (e.g., 'visionary,' 'top-rated research,' 'top-notch') are sometimes attached to research that is riddled with rudimentary errors or that flouts standard scientific practices. Perhaps the most notorious example is the 'critical positivity ratio' put forward by Barbara Fredrickson (Fredrickson, 2009; Fredrickson & Losada, 2005) and heralded widely by her fellow positive psychologists. Expert scrutiny of the “critical positivity ratio” proved it to be "entirely fanciful" and to rest on "completely illusory 'applications' of mathematics” (Brown, Sokal, & Friedman, 2013, p. 812). Another troubling example is the multimillion-dollar Comprehensive Soldier Fitness (CSF) program, initiated in 2008 by Martin Seligman. At the outset, Seligman confidently predicted that CSF would “transform the practice of psychology and psychology’s relation to medicine and education” (Seligman & Fowler, 2011, p. 82). These authors further boasted that the program would amass an:

unprecedented database for the prospective longitudinal study of the effects of psychological variables on physical health, mental health, and performance. . . . We predict that this database will become a national treasure for psychological and medical research (Seligman & Fowler, 2011, p. 85)

[quote continues] Unfortunately, independent reviews of the outcome of CSF training have proved disappointing, and have even suggested possible negative effects (Brown, 2015; Institute of Medicine, 2014). Subsequently – and in contradiction to the ethos of openness on which scientific progress is based – no further reports regarding the outcomes of CSF training have appeared. Nor – despite the promise of a “national treasure” of data for researchers – have data been made available for scrutiny. Such incidents of hyped-up promises and pseudo-findings are especially troubling because of the myriad of advice blogs, self-help books, and academic curricula for training practitioners that rely on this research base [End quote] (Marecek & Christopher, 2018, p. 93).

⧈ One of the founding objectives of PP has been to present itself as a scientific endeavor, as attested by quotes such as:  “Positive psychology is psychology – psychology is science – and science requires checking theories against evidence” (Peterson, 2009, p. XXIII) or “We are, unblushingly, scientists first” (Seligman & Csikszentmihalyi, 2001, p. 89). From the very beginning of positive psychology, its main authors have made a strenuous effort to differentiate it from what science is not, such as self-help (Seligman, 1999). This regular insistence on the status of positive psychology as a science, indeed as a rigorous science, might perhaps indicate that the authors of these statements have their doubts about it. Certain statements about science are more rhetorical than real. . . . Faced with this historical and geographical panorama, PP proposes a positive outlook on the human condition. The decision is brave and bold, but the scientific data to support it are nonexistent. It is a legitimate point of view to hold, of course, but not a scientific one. Positive psychology tends to present itself as a secular alternative to traditional religions. It is in this sense that Peterson and Park (2003) explicitly warned that PP should not be taken as an “ideological movement or secular religion” (p. 145). Similarly, Lazarus (2003b, p. 176) stated that in his opinion, proponents of PP were “promoting a kind of religion, a vision from on high, which is falsely clothed in a claim to science that never materializes.” It is not acceptable in scientific discourse to confuse beliefs with data, although the confusion is more common than recognized” (Moreno-Jiménez & Aguirre-Camacho, 2018, pp. 122-123).

 Throughout the last 20 years many authors have emphasized science when discussing positive psychology. This trend continues: "Positive psychology is about well-being and human strengths. It is about the scientific study of these things. It is also about how to apply this scientific knowledge in clinical settings, schools, organisations and most importantly in our day-to-day lives to help us to thrive" (Carr, 2020, p. 3).

⧈ "Given that science by nature is incremental and integrative, it is neither scholarly nor ethical for PP researchers to only focus on recent publications by members of the PP community, as if they have created a new science and the older work is not worth reading. Such a myopic view of the literature is partially responsible for the backlash against PP; most researchers would react negatively if a positive psychologist failed to cite their prior work and claimed to have discovered something new" (Wong & Roy, 2018, p. 143).

 In this same vein, Seligman pronounced:

 "However, Abraham Maslow did come too early. Scientific psychology did not take him seriously. Maslow himself recognized that he wanted scientific respect above all, and his research assistant Bob Gable, in a revealing personal letter in 2001, wrote to me, Abe would have been happier with something that never happened—a return phone call from Fred Skinner. Rather than carry out mainstream science on his ideas, his followers, calling themselves humanistic psychologists, developed their own qualitative and nonexperimental methods. Humanistic Psychology’s then-radical ideas combined with its less-than-rigorous methods made it doubly difficult for science to digest, hence its present status as scientific backwater that is separate from Positive Psychology (Waterman 2013). Positive Psychology keeps some of the radical ideas, but it uses conventional, rigorous methods. In fact, I had not read much Maslow, and so his writings had only a negligible role in my own thinking. Had I invoked Maslow, however appropriately, it would have been window dressing. Positive Psychology arose directly from my take on the shortcomings of mainstream clinical and experimental science" (Seligman, 2019, p. 19).

⧈  I think another aspect that jumps out when you read the literature on positive psychology is a tremendous sense of naivety for lack of a better word. Some authors appear to defend positive psychology uncritically. For example, "However, there has also been some recent criticism of positive psychology. It suggests that we have been sold an impossible dream by advocates of ‘ra-ra’ happiness and purveyors of Pollyanna unrealism. Critics object to alleged assertions that people should be happy all the time and that we should strive to be happy every moment of every day. At times critics have confused true positive psychology with the 1960s ‘smile and be happy’ school of personal development which went out of fashion two decades ago."

—without even referencing a single source of criticism the author goes on:

"This criticism does a major disservice to the significant amount of valuable research done under the positive psychology umbrella. It also does a disservice to the claimants who appear to have seen the opportunity to make money by writing a book debunking something which was not there in the first place. There is, for example, positive psychology research that suggests that too high a level of intense happiness in fact has a negative effect on health" (Driver, 2011, p. 6).

  Again uncritically, Driver (2011, P. 27) goes on to quote Fredrickson's ratio and to endorse it in his role as a coach: "as a general rule, a ratio of 3 or more positive emotions to one negative seems to keep the balance (Fredrickson 2010). What is clear is that part of the coach's role is to help the coachee keep in a positive state, focussing much more on strengths than weaknesses."  Later, the author goes on: "While a minimum ratio of 3:1 is needed to balance things out, Fredrickson has found a further point around 4 or 5 positive to 1 negative, beyond which individuals really flourish. In relationships this means the difference between lasting successful marriages and ones which come to an end. In business this means the crucial difference between individuals and teams which deliver consistent high performance and those which perform poorly" (Driver, 2011, p. 47) [notice that no reference is given to this "4 or 5 positive to 1 negative" prescription to flourish—Fredrickson's book quotes Gottman suggesting that marriages that flourish have a 5 to 1 ratio; she quotes Schwartz's research suggesting the "optimal positivity ratio" is 4 to 1].

⧈ White, Uttl, & Holder, (2019, p. 1) stated: "For at least four decades, researchers have studied the effectiveness of interventions designed to increase well-being. These interventions have become known as positive psychology interventions (PPIs)." The authors reexamined "two highly cited meta-analyses that examined the effectiveness of PPIs on well-being and depression: Sin and Lyubomirsky (2009) and Bolier et al. (2013)." "The present study revealed three key findings: (1) many of the primary studies used a small sample size; (2) small sample size bias was pronounced in many of the analyses; and (3) when small sample size bias was taken into account, the effect of PPIs on well-being were small but significant (approximately r = .10), whereas the effect of PPIs on depression were variable, dependent on outliers, and generally not statistically significant." "Critically, both meta-analyses reviewed, did not include a large number of relevant studies, and thus, effect sizes estimated from their sample of primary studies need to be confirmed by future, more comprehensive, meta-analyses. Accordingly, a comprehensive and transparent meta-analysis of all relevant studies of PPIs is necessary" (White, Uttl, & Holder, 2019, p. 42).

⧈  In summary, much of the literature on positive psychology lacks academic rigour and is generally uncritical.



▣ 2019 — 2.3 Seligman update.

⧈ I am including a brief update on Seligman here because historically he was considered the father of positive psychology and largely remains so. It's very disheartening to read Seligman because he comes across as a narcissistic and unbelievably self-absorbed individual. I'm only going to give three main examples here but I could give pages and pages.

 Here is Seligman describing his memories as an eight-year-old competing in a school quiz competition.

 [Begin quote] AND NOW FOR the finals. The fourth grader who gets all of these right will be Albany’s Quiz Kid,” said the announcer to the expectant audience of about two hundred parents, teachers, and students assembled in the Madison Theater.

“There are only two of you left. Martin Seligman, you have ten seconds. What state ends in ‘ut’?”

“Connecticut,” I snapped back.” “The moment actually arrived. “Connecticut is right, Martin. Now, Rocco, your question. How many Little Peppers are there?”

Rocco Giaccomino, from somewhere in lower Albany, a place my family wouldn’t even drive through, pondered.

“Five,” he ventured. I was sure he was guessing. I didn’t know why, but I too would have guessed five.


And so it went through six more rounds.

“Martin. Who wrote ‘Flow Gently Sweet Afton,’ and where it is?” I’d never remotely heard of this. The Afton must be a river. In Ireland? But not in any song we sang in School 16.

“England,” I blurted out right before the bell.

“Incorrect! Rocco?”

“Scotland. ‘Flow Gently Sweet Afton’ is a poem by Burns… Robert Burns,” said Rocco with finality.

On the way out of the theater, Beth said disconsolately, “How can they expect an eight-year-old to know Robert Burns?”

I took home a Mickey Mouse watch with a fire-engine-red wristband. Rocco, unfairly all of nine and taught by Scottish spinsters, went to Chicago [End quote] (Seligman, 2018b, pp. 24-25).

 Here is Seligman complaining that he was discriminated against and didn't get his proper recognition as school valedictorian.

 “Graduation was a glum affair for me. Dan was valedictorian of our class—although fifty years later, my friend Doug North, valedictorian of 1958 and the new headmaster, sent me an official transcript stating that I had actually graduated first in the class. I did not receive the various academic prizes that I felt I had earned. Instead they were distributed to the boys whose families were most likely to support the Academy financially in future years. I felt more a failure than a triumphant graduate sallying forth to conquer new worlds. I was going to Princeton, and that should have been cause for celebration, but so were four of my classmates, and I was, after all, a Harvard reject ” (Seligman, 2018b, p. 43).

 Finally, it's hard to believe how self-absorbed Seligman can be but here is his description of taking his girlfriend to a restaurant to propose.

[Begin quote] I took Mandy to Le Jardin, a restaurant in Soho with London’s most celebrated cellar of very old clarets. I had my mother’s diamond engagement ring—the one from Adrian—in my pocket. The evening, however, refused to come off flawlessly.

I looked over Le Jardin’s legendary wine list, and the sommelier and I had a long and pretentious discussion. The corks in 1945 had gone bad because of the war, the Pauillacs did not age as well as the St. Estephes, and so on. I could not seem to rein myself in and focus on the main event. I ordered a 1949 Lynch-Bages. It was very expensive and their last bottle. It was brought out with great ceremony and skillfully decanted. I swirled, I swirled again, I inhaled, and I sipped. It was far gone, over the hill. The sommelier, with aplomb, whisked it away. The patrons nearby noticed this and glanced our way surreptitiously. The sommelier handed me the list, and once again we had an overly long discussion of the merits of the 1945s, 1947s, and 1949s. I couldn’t shut up. He couldn’t shut up. I chose a 1947 Calon-Segur. More ceremony, cork sniffing, and decanting. The other patrons were staring openly. Oh my God, this one is also bad. Could I restrain myself and just accept it? Of course not; I enumerated its defects. This time the sommelier tasted it before sending it away. Mandy seemed uncharacteristically impatient. The wine list again. The discussion. “Third bottle,” the sommelier said, “you pay half no matter what.” I agreed and ordered the 1949 Talbot, not the greatest but the longest-lived of clarets. The ceremony, the decanting, the cork sniffing, and all the nearby patrons now no longer eating and staring.

The Talbot was perfect, heavenly in fact. The sommelier relaxed, Mandy relaxed, and the room broke into polite applause.

I dropped to my knees and took out the ring. Mandy beamed and softly said, “Yes.” The room broke into prolonged, booming applause [End quote] (Seligman, 2018b, p. 189).

 I cannot imagine a worse role model for psychology or for positive psychology.

⧈ The second controversial aspect since my last update is Seligman's role in advising the Army and CIA. Specifically, it is widely alleged and/or assumed that when he met with CIA officials, he tutored them in how to make prisoners helpless as part of their interrogation. He has denied this. Here is a place to start: (Seligman, 2018a).



▣ 2019 — 2.4 Fredrickson debacle.

⧈ Here is an excellent and succinct summary.
[Begin quote] A claim was recently made that there is a critical positivity ratio (also called the 'Losada line') that is an exact number, based on the ratio of positive to negative self-reported or observed emotions, that is allegedly an invariant constant bifurcating languishing from flourishing in all individuals and social groups across all time and space (Fredrickson & Losada, 2005). This was defined precisely as '2.9013' and asserted to be a universal 'tipping point' (cf. Gladwell, 2000). It is computed by dividing the quantity of positive by negative emotions as measured in various arbitrary ways, but was claimed to be derivative of the famous Lorenz equations in physics. Individuals whose self-thoughts evaluated in terms of positive to negative fall below this critical positivity ratio would be depressed, according to this claim. Similarly, married couples whose communications fall below this critical positivity ratio would be unhappy and at risk for divorce. Likewise, work teams whose communications fall below this critical positivity ratio would fail to be productive. In contrast to individuals, couples, and work teams who would supposedly languish due to having a critical positivity ratio below 2.9013, those whose critical positivity ratio exceeded this alleged tipping point would supposedly flourish, as individuals and couples with such a fortuitous critical positivity ratio would be happy, and work teams productive.
This claim was published in the flagship journal of the world’s largest psychology organization, the American Psychologist (Fredrickson & Losada, 2005), and presumably went through a rigorous peer-review process. It also was covered in a popular book (Fredrickson, 2009) that received highest praise from many of the most well-known positive psychologists. This claim also received almost a thousand citations in the scholarly literature, generated nearly a million hits on a Google search, and has been widely influential in numerous applications (e.g., in education, government, and healthcare).
The problem is that the critical positivity ratio is invalid. Its mathematics were shown to be wrong (Brown, Sokal, & Friedman, 2013), and this was acknowledged through a retraction of the mathematics and the claim for 2.9013 as being a precise universal and invariant constant (Fredrickson & Losada, 2013), but Fredrickson (2013) continued to assert that there was empirical evidence for a tipping point somewhere around “3.” This claim too was shown to be invalid (Brown, Sokal, & Friedman, 2014a).
…What were the implicit values that allowed the critical positivity ratio to be blindly accepted and even lauded by some as the best work in positive psychology? In a naïve belief in the power of science to arrive at simple solutions to complex problems, positive psychology uncritically accepted the erroneous claim that the critical positivity ratio was based on the science of physics (i.e., chaos theory and its related mathematics, namely complex systems dynamics), so it had "source validity" stemming from valuing the legitimacy of physics, even if misapplied to psychology. [End quote] (Robbins & Friedman, 2018, pp. 20-21).

⧈ Overview Here is the story in a nutshell. Fredrickson has focused her work on her broaden and build theory of positive emotions. She got an email from Losada, a mathematician/expert in chaos who said his nonlinear dynamic model represented key tenets of Fredrickson’s work on positive emotions. She said because his work had been published in peer-reviewed publications she accepted it at face value. The two wrote an article that was published in American Psychologist (Fredrickson & Losada, 2005). She continued to promote the theory, for example in her 2009 book (Fredrickson, 2009). In 2013 an article was published debunking the mathematics behind the 2005 article (Brown, Sokal, & Friedman, 2013). Also in 2013, Fredrickson responded by essentially defending the construct (Fredrickson, 2013). At the end of the day, Fredrickson simply said I didn't understand it—that was his part of the paper. But, amazingly, she then says that she reconsidered the situation and stands behind the idea of a 3 to 1 ratio of positive and negative emotion. She now says the contributions of Losada should be seen as "compelling and useful metaphors rather than as mathematically precise prescriptions” (Fredrickson, 2013 August 30). “To be clear, the work of Brown and colleagues (2013) did not question the validity of the empirical evidence, offered in Fredrickson and Losada (2005), that fourishing is associated with higher positivity ratios than is non-fourishing” (Fredrickson, 2013. p. 817). “In sum, then, the claim that fourishing mental health is associated with higher positivity ratios than is non-fourishing remains unchallenged (Fredrickson, 2013, p. 819). I think it is noteworthy that the American Psychologist did not call for the retraction of the original paper but rather published Fredrickson's defence and a subsequent discussion of the merits (Brown, Sokal, & Friedman, 2014a; Brown, Sokal, & Friedman, 2014b; Guastello, 2014; Hämäläinen, Luoma, & Saarinen, 2014; Lefebvre, & Schwartz, 2014; Musau, 2014; Nickerson, 2014). Also see the special issue devoted to the topic: (Friedman & Brown, 2018). In turn, Nickerson, (2018) gives a rebuttal to the Fredrickson 2013 article (This is a good article to start with if you want to look at this body of literature).

⧈ 2005 “P/N = (c – Y0 – 1) b –1, where P/N is the ratio of positivity to negativity; c is connectivity, the control parameter Y0 is 16, the value of the transient before the attractor settles; and b –1 is the inverse of the Lorenz constant, equal to 0.375” (Fredrickson & Losada, 2005, p. 682). “Using the above equation, it is known that the positivity ratio equivalent to r = 24.7368 is 2.9013. Mathematically, then, a positivity ratio of about 2.9 bifurcates the complex dynamics of fourishing from the limit cycle of languishing. We call this dividing line the Losada line. From a psychological standpoint, this ratio may seem absurdly precise. Yet we underscore that this bifurcation point is a mathematically derived theoretical ideal. Empirical observations made at various levels of measurement precision can test this prediction” (Fredrickson & Losada, 2005, p. 683).

⧈ 2009 I am going to provide three quotations that illustrate that Fredrickson was completely enamored with Losada and his approach and obviously unable to critically evaluate the work that she was endorsing and promoting. “Hours into our lively discussion, he made a bold claim: based on his mathematical work, he could locate the exact positivity ratio that would distinguish those who flourished from those who didn't. I countered with an offer: if he could find that ratio, I'd test it against data on the day-to-day emotional lives of people who I knew could be classified as flourishing or not. Both sensing that this could be a huge discovery, we vowed to collaborate. Our mutual aim was to discover and test this ratio, and, if the data held up, write a paper together. As the weeks unfolded, the match between Marcial's mathematics and my theory and data continued to amaze me. I needed to clear the decks to make room for this sudden new turn in my research program. I wanted to do it justice. Thanks to the John Templeton Foundation, I arranged a mini-sabbatical for the following semester. I was released from my teaching duties so I could immerse myself in the science of dynamic systems that Marcial had introduced me to. I took on the task of introducing this perspective to the science of positive psychology. Having done so, [Fredrickson and Losada (2005)] I'd now like to share it with you. You already know that positivity broadens your mind (chapter 4), builds your best future (chapter 5), and fuels your resilience (chapter 6). Now let's explore how positivity and negativity work together to tip your life toward flourishing. I'll start by describing Marcial's discovery about positivity” (Fredrickson, 2009, pp. 216-217).

⧈ “What I love about Losada's work is that it translates the two core truths in my broaden-and-build theory into the language of mathematics. The first core truth, detailed in chapter 4, holds that positivity opens us— it broadens our minds and our hearts. Resonating with this core truth, Losada's math shows how positivity goes hand-in-hand with asking questions and focusing outward. That is, it was Losada's high-performing teams who were “most open to new ideas. They were a testament to what a synergistic group of open minds might accomplish. The second core truth of my broaden-and-build theory, showcased in chapter 5, is that positivity transforms us for the better— it builds our resources. Aligned with this core truth, Losada's math shows how positivity comes with greater social resources. That is, as positivity increased, so did the connectivity or attunement within the team itself. When positivity was high, team members were more responsive to one another. Also aligned with this second core truth, Losada's math shows how positivity links up with doing well, with business success. And, as icing on the cake, my work, described in chapter 6, shows how positivity helps you bounce back from adversity. Losada's math shows this, too” (Fredrickson, 2009, pp. 224-225).

⧈ “So Losada's life's work and mine complement each other with stunning beauty. Losada's work on positivity was richly descriptive and distilled into mathematics. By contrast, my own work on positivity was grounded in evolutionary theory and supported by experiments. Whereas Losada's work could not support causal claims about positivity, mine could. That's the difference between descriptive and experimental research. Even so, Losada's work broke new ground beyond what I could have imagined from my theory and data alone. That's what's unique about mathematical modeling. Weaving our two scientific strands together, Losada and I created a whole new portrait of positivity” (Fredrickson, 2009, pp. 225-226).

⧈ 2011 Algoe, Fredrickson, & Chow, (2011, p. 118) stated: [Begin quote] Based on mathematical modeling and tested against observed data from multiple laboratories, Fredrickson and Losada (2005) proposed that a ratio of about 3 to 1 is the tipping point beyond which humans begin to function at optimal levels.…Positivity ratios above 3 to 1 are wide enough to encompass the entire range of human emotions. Put differently, no emotion needs to be forever banished for humans to fourish. Just as affective scientists agree that positive and negative emotions should not be given equal airtime in a 1-to-1 ratio, they also agree that negative emotions are vital to optimal human functioning. What this means for the future of positive psychology is that negative emotions become the new frontier. Whether and how negative emotions contribute to optimal functioning depends not only on how frequently they are experienced relative to positive emotions, but also on whether they are necessary or gratuitous in a given context. We need better assessment tools for distinguishing necessary negativity from gratuitous negativity. One guiding principle is that necessary negativity is appropriate to the current circumstances in both content and scope, whereas gratuitous negativity is disproportionate, often overblown or inappropriately seeping into and dominating future circumstances (Fredrickson, 2009), perhaps refecting what Gottman (1994) called an absorbing state. A new frontier for scientists working in positive psychology will be to discover when and how people’s strategies for acknowledging and expressing their negative emotions contribute positively to well-being and when they detract from it (e.g., Graham, Huang, Clark, & Helgeson, 2008) [End quote]

⧈ 2013  Fredrickson (2013, p. 3) continues to emphasize her high scientific standards: "I have had the good fortune to work on the leading edge of the new and amply rigorous science of positive emotions … I have sought to create an evidence-based understanding of light-hearted moments, charting their variety, the ways they change how the human mind works, and how, little-by-little, they change people's lives."

In 2013 Fredrickson published an article seeking "To identify molecular mechanisms underlying the prospective health advantages associated with psychological well-being, we analyzed leukocyte basal gene expression profiles in 80 healthy adults who were assessed for hedonic and eudaimonic well-being, as well as potentially confounded negative psychological and behavioral factors. Hedonic and eudaimonic well-being showed similar affective correlates but highly divergent transcriptome profiles. Peripheral blood mononuclear cells from people with high levels of hedonic well-being showed up-regulated expression of a stress-related conserved transcriptional response to adversity (CTRA) involving increased expression of proinflammatory genes and decreased expression of genes involved in antibody synthesis and type I IFN response. In contrast, high levels of eudaimonic well-being were associated with CTRA down-regulation. Promoter-based bioinformatics implicated distinct patterns of transcription factor activity in structuring the observed differences in gene expression associated with eudaimonic well-being (reduced NF-κB and AP-1 signaling and increased IRF and STAT signaling). Transcript origin analysis identified monocytes, plasmacytoid dendritic cells, and B lymphocytes as primary cellular mediators of these dynamics. The finding that hedonic and eudaimonic well-being engage distinct gene regulatory programs despite their similar effects on total well-being and depressive symptoms implies that the human genome may be more sensitive to qualitative variations in well-being than are our conscious affective experiences" (p. 13684).

Fredrickson references Keller to support this quote: "In the present study, we examined the biological implications of hedonic and eudaimonic well-being through the lens of the human genome—a system of ~21,000 genes that has evolved fundamentally to help humans survive and thrive (i.e., be well)" (p. 13684).

I reviewed the Keller article and could not see support of this. Keller says: "In addition to providing information required for building and maintaining an organism, the genome also provides a vast amount of information for adapting and responding to—for interacting with—the environment in which it finds itself—as indeed it must if the organism is to develop more or less normally, and to survive more or less adequately. Rather than a set of genes initiating causal chains leading to the formation of traits, I suggest that the genome that now appears before us is first and foremost an exquisitely sensitive reaction (or response) mechanism—a device for regulating the production of specific proteins in response to the constantly changing signals it receives from its environment. The signals that the genome detects come most immediately from its intra-cellular environment, but these reflect, in turn, input from the external environments both of the cell and of the organism … Genomes are responsive, but far from infinitely so; the range of possible responses is severely constrained, both by the organizational dynamics of the system in which they are embedded and by their own structure" (Keller, 2012, pp. 138-139).

Compton and Hoffman (2020, p. 97) provided a perspective on the article: "One highly provocative study compared the impact of hedonic well-being and eudaimonic well-being on gene expression. In this case, the study examined genes involved in antiviral and inflammation associated with stress. Barbara Fredrickson and her colleagues (2013) found that people with high levels of eudaimonic well-being showed favorable gene expression in their immune cells. Surprisingly to the researchers, people with high levels of hedonic well-being showed less favorable, or even adverse, gene expression in their immune cells. The results became even more important for interventions when the researchers found that both eudaimonic and hedonic groups reported similar levels of positive emotions. That is, both groups reported they felt 'positive,' but their genomes were reacting differently. Clearly, more research is needed to follow up on this provocative study."

⧈ 2016  It's disappointing to see introductory textbooks in positive psychology referring to this ratio without noting any controversy associated with it (Gregory & Rutledge, 2016).

⧈ 2019  Unfortunately, there is no evidence that Fredrickson has tempered her proclivity to making extraordinary claims. In her most recent study, (Le Nguyen et al., 2019) she makes the extraordinary claim that a 12 week program of "Loving-kindness meditation" will slow the biological aging process as indicated by a shortening of telomere length (TL). The authors seem to second guess their own results: "Therefore, one should interpret the differences in TL changes here with caution, treating them as evidence for 'apparent' rather than true alterations in TL" (Le Nguyen et al., 2019, p. 26). Friedman, MacDonald, Brown, & Coyne, (2019) challenged the article, saying, "We simply conclude that this paper's extraordinary claim does not have the compelling evidence to back it up, and we urge not making extraordinary claims without such evidence."



▣ 2019 — 2.5 References pertinent to the Fredrickson debacle.

Algoe, S. B., Fredrickson, B. L., & Chow, S. M. (2011). The future of emotions research within positive psychology. In K. M. Sheldon, T. B. Kashdan, & M. F. Steger (Eds.), Designing positive psychology: Taking stock and moving forward (pp. 115-132). New York, NY: Oxford University Press. https://doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195373585.003.0008

Anthony, A. (2014, January 18). The British amateur who debunked the mathematics of happiness. The Observer. Retrieved from www.theguardian.com/science/2014/jan/19/mathematics-of-happinessdebunked-nick-brown

Bartlett, Tom (5 August 2013). "The Magic Ratio That Wasn't". Chronicle of Higher Education. Retrieved from https://www.chronicle.com/blogs/percolator/the-magic-ratio-that-wasnt/33279 The 2009 book Positivity: Top-Notch Research Reveals the 3 to 1 Ratio That Will Change Your Life, by Barbara Fredrickson, was praised by the heavyweights of psychology. Daniel Gilbert said it provided a “scientifically sound prescription for joy.” Daniel Goleman extolled its “surefire methods for transforming our lives.” Martin E. P. Seligman, often called the father of positive psychology, raved that “this book, like Barb, is the ‘real thing.’” But the top-notchness of the research that underpins the book has been called into serious question. Even Fredrickson, a professor of psychology at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, has now backed away from the ratio in the book’s subtitle, saying she didn’t really understand the mathematics behind it and had relied instead on the fact that it had been peer-reviewed.

Boyatzis, R. E., Rochford, K., & Taylor, S. N. (2015). The role of the positive emotional attractor in vision and shared vision: Toward effective leadership, relationships, and engagement. Frontiers in Psychology, 6, 670. http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fpsyg.2015.00670

Brown, N. J. L., MacDonald, D. A., Samanta, M. P., Friedman, H. L., & Coyne, J. C. (2014). A critical reanalysis of the relationship between genomics and well-being. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 111(35), 12705-12709. https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.1407057111

Brown, N. J. L., Sokal, A. D., & Friedman, H. L. (2013). The complex dynamics of wishful thinking: The critical positivity ratio. American Psychologist, 68, 801–813. http://dx.doi.org/10.1037/a0032850 We examine critically the claims made by Fredrickson and Losada (2005) concerning the construct known as the “positivity ratio.” We find no theoretical or empirical justification for the use of differential equations drawn from fluid dynamics, a subfield of physics, to describe changes in human emotions over time; furthermore, we demonstrate that the purported application of these equations contains numerous fundamental conceptual and mathematical errors. The lack of relevance of these equations and their incorrect application lead us to conclude that Fredrickson and Losada’s claim to have demonstrated the existence of a critical minimum positivity ratio of 2.9013 is entirely unfounded. More generally, we urge future researchers to exercise caution in the use of advanced mathematical tools, such as nonlinear dynamics, and in particular to verify that the elementary conditions for their valid application have been met.

Brown, N. J. L., Sokal, A. D., & Friedman, H. L. (2014a). The persistence of wishful thinking. American Psychologist, 69, 629–632. http://dx.doi.org/10.1037/a0037050

Brown, N. J. L., Sokal, A. D., & Friedman, H. L. (2014b). Positive psychology and romantic scientism. American Psychologist, 69, 636–637. http://dx.doi.org/10.1037/a0037390

Cole, S. W., & Fredrickson, B. L. (2014). Errors in the Brown et al. critical reanalysis. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 111(35), E3581-E3581. https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.1413316111

Diehl, M., Hay, E. L., & Berg, K. M. (2011). The ratio between positive and negative affect and flourishing mental health across adulthood. Aging & Mental Health, 15(7), 882-893. https://doi.org/10.1080/13607863.2011.56948 "Despite the limitations and questions that remain, data from this 30-day diary study showed that the positivity ratio differed across adulthood, such that age was associated with an increasing preponderance of positive to negative affect. Furthermore, the positivity ratio was clearly associated with adults' mental health status, such that higher ratios of positive-to-negative affect were predictive of more positive mental health. Finally, our data support the conclusion that although the ratio of 2.9 may be a critical value in young adulthood, this value is not as discriminating of mental health status among middle-aged and older adults (p. 891).

Fredrickson, B. L. (2009). Positivity: Groundbreaking research reveals how to embrace the hidden strength of positive emotions, overcome negativity, and thrive. New York, NY: Crown. We all know negativity; it looms large and is easy to spot. Negativity pervades your self-talk and your judgments. It bleeds into exchanges with your kids and your colleagues, eroding goodwill. Making matters worse, negativity breeds health-damaging emotions—like anger, contempt, and depression—which seep into your entire body. You can feel the simmering bitterness eating away at your stomach, raising your blood pressure, and turning your shoulder and neck muscles to stone. For more than twenty years. Dr. Barbara Fredrickson has researched these questions. What she discovered and teaches has made her a luminary in psychology and beyond. Now, in Positivity, she shares how experiencing positive emotions in a 3-to-1 ratio to negative emotions leads people to achieve what they once could only imagine. Far from frivolous, tapping into one's own unique wellsprings of positivity is a wise and healthy investment in the future. In Positivity, Dr. Fredrickson reveals how the stunning new scientific discoveries about this powerful—though undervalued—state of mind can enhance your relationships, improve your health, relieve depression, and broaden your mind. Experience positivity for yourself and make a lasting difference in the way you live.

Fredrickson, B. L. (2013). Updated thinking on positivity ratios. American Psychologist, 68, 814–822. http://dx.doi.org/10.1037/a0033584

Fredrickson, B. L. (2013 August 30). Recalculating a Positivity Ratio, and Finding a Metaphor. Letter. Chronicle of Higher Education. Retrieved from https://www.chronicle.com/blogs/letters/recalculating-a-positivity-ratio-and-finding-a-metaphor/

Fredrickson, B. L. (2019). World renowned researcher Dr. Barbara Fredrickson gives you the lab-tested tools necessary to create a healthier, more vibrant, and flourishing life. She discovered that experiencing positive emotions broadens people's minds and builds their resourcefulness in ways that help them become more resilient to adversity and effortlessly achieve what they once could only imagine. With Positivity, you’ll learn to see new possibilities, bounce back from setbacks, connect with others, and become the best version of yourself. What's your ratio? 80% of Americans fall short of the 3-to-1 positivity ratio that predicts flourishing. Click here to take Barb's 2-minute on-line quiz and see how you score. Retrieved from https://www.positivityratio.com/index.php

Fredrickson, B. L., Grewen, K. M., Coffey, K. A., Algoe, S. B., Firestine, A. M., Arevalo, J. M. G., … Cole, S. W. (2013). A functional genomic perspective on human well-being. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 110(33), 13684-13689. https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.1305419110

Fredrickson, B. L., & Losada, M. F. (2005). Positive affect and the complex dynamics of human flourishing. American Psychologist, 60, 678–686. http://dx.doi.org/10.1037/0003-066X.60.7.678

Fredrickson, B. L., & Losada, M. F. (2013). Correction to Fredrickson and Losada (2005). American Psychologist, 68, 822. http://dx.doi.org/10.1037/a0034435

Friedman, H. L. (2008). Humanistic and positive psychology: The methodological and epistemological divide. The Humanistic Psychologist, 36, 113–126. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/08873260802111036

Friedman, H. L. (2015b). The need for a more nuanced conclusion than life is pretty meaningful. American Psychologist, 70, 570–571. http://dx.doi.org/10.1037/a0039189

Friedman, H. L., & Brown, N. J. L. (2018). Implications of debunking the “critical positivity ratio” for humanistic psychology: Introduction to special issue. [Special issue]. Journal of Humanistic Psychology, 58(3), 239–261. https://doi.org/10.1177/0022167818762227

Friedman, H. L., MacDonald, D. A., Brown, N. J. L., & Coyne, J. C. (2019). Extraordinary claims require compelling evidence: Concerns about "loving-kindness meditation slows biological aging in novices." Psychoneuroendocrinology, (July), 104410. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.psyneuen.2019.104410

Friedman, H. L., & Robbins, B. D. (2012). The negative shadow cast by positive psychology: Contrasting views and implications of humanistic and positive psychology on resiliency. The Humanistic Psychologist, 40, 87–102. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/08873267.2012.643720

Gregory, E. M., & Rutledge, P. B. (2016). Exploring positive psychology: The science of happiness and well-being. Santa Barbara, CA: Greenwood.

Guastello,  S.  J.  (2014).  Nonlinear  dynamical  models  in  psychology  are  widespread  and testable. American Psychologist, 69, 628-629. https://doi.org/10.1037/a0036980

Hämäläinen, R. P., Luoma, J., & Saarinen, E. (2014). Mathematical modeling is more than fitting equations. American Psychologist, 69, 633-634. https://doi.org/10.1037/a0037048

Held, B. S. (2018). Positive psychology’s a priori problem. Journal of Humanistic Psychology, 58(3), 313–342. https://doi.org/10.1177/0022167817739409 "The positive psychology movement, in self-proclaimed distinction to all prior positive mentality movements, famously claims to have founded itself on the rock of science. Of its many scientific findings, none has been trumpeted more loudly than Barbara Fredrickson’s now (in)famous “positivity ratio,” in which 2.9 positive emotions to each negative emotion (which, following Fredrickson, 2009, I will call the 3:1 ratio) constitutes the “tipping point” that allegedly predicts flourishing over languishing and so is said to validate Fredrickson’s “broaden-and-build theory of positive emotions” (Fredrickson, 2009, 2013; Fredrickson & Losada, 2005). The recent debate between Fredrickson (2013) and Brown, Sokal, and Friedman (2013, 2014), who convincingly challenged Fredrickson and Losada’s (2005, 2013) “non-linear dynamics model” of positive emotions on methodological grounds, has for positive psychologists tarnished neither the luster of their positivity-ratio pearl nor the motivating positive/negative dichotomy at its core. Although some may counter that conceptions of the positive/negative dichotomy are evolving within the movement—the hedonic concept “happiness” has been eclipsed by the eudaimonic concept “flourishing” (Fredrickson, 2009; Seligman, 2011)—positive psychologists’ conception of flourishing depends logically on positivity and negativity as conceived from the movement’s start (Peterson & Seligman, 2004; Seligman, 2002). And so the positive/negative dichotomy constitutes positive psychology’s movement-defining conceptual foundation" (p. 2).

Keller, E. F. (2011). Genes, Genomes, and Genomics. Biological Theory, 6(2), 132-140. https://doi.org/10.1007/s13752-012-0014-x

Lefebvre, V. A., & Schwartz, R. M. (2014). An empirical ratio in search of a theory. American Psychologist, 69, 634-635. https://doi.org/10.1037/a0036949 (Correction published 2014, American Psychologist, 69, p. 935. https://doi.org/10.1037/a0038276)

Le Nguyen, K. D., Lin, J., Algoe, S. B., Brantley, M. M., Kim, S. L., Brantley, J., … Fredrickson, B. L. (2019). Loving-kindness meditation slows biological aging in novices: Evidence from a 12-week randomized controlled trial. Psychoneuroendocrinology, 108(May), 20-27. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.psyneuen.2019.05.020

Lewis, S. (2015). Bringing positive psychology to organizational psychology. In S. Joseph (Ed.), Positive psychology in practice: Promoting human flourishing in work, health, education, and everyday life (2nd ed., pp. 329–340). Hoboken, NJ: Wiley.

Losada, M. (2014, December 1). For the record: A historical account of my work with teams. Retrieved from http://media.wix.com/ugd/0d66e3_b0c740cbcc9d4255a8478fef36b0695f.pdf

Musau, A. (2014). The place of mathematical models in psychology and the social sciences. American Psychologist, 69, 632-633. https://doi.org/10.1037/a0037068

Nickerson, C. A. (2014). No empirical evidence for critical positivity ratios. American Psychologist, 69(6), 626–628. https://doi.org/10.1037/a0036961

Nickerson, C. A. (2018). There is no empirical evidence for critical positivity ratios: Comment on Fredrickson (2013). Journal of Humanistic Psychology, 58(3), 284–312. https://doi.org/10.1177/0022167817740468

 Orkibi, H., Hamama, L., Gavriel-Fried, B., & Ronen, T. (2018). Pathways to adolescents’ flourishing: Linking self-control skills and positivity ratio through social support. Youth and Society, 50(1), 3–25. https://doi.org/10.1177/0044118X15581171

Pincus, D., Kiefer, A. W., & Beyer, J. I. (2018). Nonlinear dynamical systems and humanistic psychology. Journal of Humanistic Psychology, 58(3), 343–366. https://doi.org/10.1177/0022167817741784 In 2005, Fredrickson and Losada published an article in the journal American Psychologist, claiming to have found a critical 2.9 to 1 positivity to negativity ratio that could potentially serve as a threshold to explain human flourishing in general, across domains ranging from small group dynamics to mental health and resilience. In the years that followed, this compelling and highly marketable result became a key selling point among the leaders of the “new” science of positivity, helping to distinguish “positive psychology” from humanistic psychology, which predates the former by about 50 years (Rogers, 1951, 1957). This mathematically precise positivity threshold served as a shiny marketing tool, as its origins were clouded over by the exotic and technical realm of nonlinear differential equations. In nearly every respect, this result was ideal: mathematically grounded, empirical, extremely precise, and useful in nearly any human context.

Rich, G. J. (2018). Positive psychology and humanistic psychology: Evil twins, sibling rivals, distant cousins, or something else? Journal of Humanistic Psychology, 58(3), 262–283. https://doi.org/10.1177/0022167817698820

Robbins, B. D., & Friedman, H. L. (2018). The unavoidable role of values in positive psychology: Reflections in light of psychology's replicability crisis. In N. J. L. Brown, T. Lomas, & F. J. Eiroa-Orosa (Eds.), Routledge international handbooks. The Routledge international handbook of critical positive psychology (pp. 15-25). New York, NY, US: Routledge/Taylor & Francis.

Shrira, A., Bodner, E., & Palgi, Y. (2016). Positivity ratio of flourishing individuals: Examining the moderation effects of methodological variations and chronological age. The Journal of Positive Psychology, 11, 109–123. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/17439760.2015.1037857

Terni, P. (2015). Solution-focus: Bringing positive psychology into the conversation. International Journal of Solution-Focused Practices, 3, 8–16. http://dx.doi.org/10.14335/ijsfp.v3i1.25



▣ 2019 — 2.6 Positive psychology in education.

⧈  Seligman's original rationale: "We conclude that, were it possible, well-being should be taught in school on three grounds: as an antidote to depression, as a vehicle for increasing life satisfaction, and as an aid to better learning and more creative thinking. Because most young people attend school, schools provide the opportunity to reach them and enhance their well-being on a wide scale" (Seligman et al., 2009, p. 295).

⧈  "Positive education is an umbrella term used to describe empirically validated and scientifically informed interventions and programs from positive psychology that have an impact on student well-being. Public interest in well-being, and more specifically, the applications of positive psychology to education, has grown in recent years" (White & Murray, 2015b, p. xiii).

⧈  "What we mean is that we are teaching programs that have been shown to have scientific basis to improve the level of student well-being. What we are doing when we teach these skills is to buffer students before they need them. Positive psychologists argue that systems and approaches to mental health have been deeply rooted in the traditional view of human psychology-a disease or pathology model that focuses on what is wrong with the human condition"  (White & Murray, 2015a, p. 14).

⧈  "We firmly believe that positive education is education for both traditional skills and character development.…We argue a key to unlock the potential of positive institutions lies at the intersection of the whole school leadership, strategy, and empirical lessons from positive psychology. This is explicitly linked to enriching the whole school staff's wellbeing first, and then student well-being, with the expectation to build whole community systems focusing on optimal human functioning (Roffey 2012, pp. 8-10). We assert that positive institutions must not lose sight of Aristotle's ancient wisdom that the development of individual and collective moral character education takes place within an institution as systems model examples of human character and that starts with the teachers acquiring well-being skills for themselves first"  (White & Murray, 2015a, pp. 15-16).

⧈  "White and Kern, (2018, p. 10): "Positive education is further challenged by over-reaching claims, which can be criticized as simply rebranding education to gain a competitive edge (Hutchinson, 2017; Kenway, 2013). When positive education is proposed to solve a myriad of challenges within education itself, including illiteracy, disengagement, and even mental illness, then the program is bound for failure. Too often, the ideas and interventions of positive psychology sound as if they can be replicated immediately in other settings. Wellbeing takes place within schools, classrooms, staff rooms, and within parent bodies, which are all impacted by specific cultural settings. Based on our experience and understanding of both research and education, we suggest that if these different perspectives and stakeholders are ignored, then the introduction of wellbeing will be just another 'fad,' or a slick marketing campaign for a school to adopt to reinvent itself, which will fail to stick amidst the reality of the pressures and challenges within a school."



▣ 2019 — 2.7 References pertinent to positive psychology in education.

Armstrong, L. L., Desson, S., St. John, E., & Watt, E. (2018). The D.R.E.A.M. program: Developing resilience through emotions, attitudes, and meaning (gifted edition) – A second wave positive psychology approach. Counselling Psychology Quarterly, 00(00), 1–26. https://doi.org/10.1080/09515070.2018.1559798

Bott, D., Escamilia, H., Kaufman, S. B., Kern, M. L., Krekel, C., Schlicht-Schmälzle, R., Seldon, A., Seligman, M. E., & White, M. 2017. The State of Positive Education. Retrieved from https://worldgovernmentsummit.org/api/publications/document/8f647dc4-e97c-6578-b2f8-ff0000a7ddb6

Bradley, C., Cordaro, D. T., Zhu, F., Vildostegui, M., Han, R. J., Brackett, M., & Jones, J. (2018). Supporting improvements in classroom climate for students and teachers with the four pillars of wellbeing curriculum. Translational Issues in Psychological Science, 4(3), 245–264. https://doi.org/10.1037/tps0000162

Chafouleas, S. M., & Bray, M. A. (2004). Introducing positive psychology: Finding a place within school psychology. Psychology in the Schools, 41(1), 1–5. https://doi.org/10.1002/pits.10133

Deb, S. (Ed.). (2018). Positive schooling and child development: International perspectives. Cham, Switzerland: Springer.

Halliday, A. J., Kern, M. L., Garrett, D. K., & Turnbull, D. A. (2019). understanding factors affecting positive education in practice: An Australian case study. Contemporary School Psychology. https://doi.org/10.1007/s40688-019-00229-0

Han, H. (2019). The VIA inventory of strengths, positive youth development, and moral education. Journal of Positive Psychology, 14(1), 32–40. https://doi.org/10.1080/17439760.2018.1528378

Kennette, L., & Myatt, B. (2018). How the post-secondary classroom can benefit from positive psychology principles. Psychology Teaching Review, 24(1), 63–66.

Kristjansson, K. (2013). Ten myths about character, virtue and virtue education — Plus three well-founded misgivings. British Journal of Educational Studies, 61(3), 269-287. https://doi.org/10.1080/00071005.2013.778386

Lombas, A. S., Jiménez, T. I., Arguís-Rey, R., Hernández-Paniello, S., Valdivia-Salas, S., & Martín-Albo, J. (2019). Impact of the happy classrooms programme on psychological well-being, school aggression, and classroom climate. Mindfulness, 1642–1660. https://doi.org/10.1007/s12671-019-01132-8

Morrish, L., Rickard, N., Chin, T. C., & Vella-Brodrick, D. A. (2018). Emotion regulation in adolescent well-being and positive education. Journal of Happiness Studies, 19(5), 1543–1564. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10902-017-9881-y

Niki De Bondt; Sven De Maeyer; Vincent Donche; Peter Van Petegem. (2019). A rationale for including overexcitability in talent research beyond the FFM-personality dimensions. High Ability Studies, 00(00), 1–26. https://doi.org/10.1080/13598139.2019.1668753

Pluskota, A. (2014). The application of positive psychology in the practice of education. SpringerPlus, 3(1), 147. https://doi.org/10.1186/2193-1801-3-147

Pollet, E., & Schnell, T. (2017). Brilliant: But what for? Meaning and subjective well-being in the lives of intellectually gifted and academically high-achieving adults. Journal of Happiness Studies, 18(5), 1459–1484. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10902-016-9783-4

Proyer, R. T., Gander, F., & Tandler, N. (2017). Strength-based interventions. Gifted Education International, 33(2), 118–130. https://doi.org/10.1177/0261429416640334

Seligman, M. E. P., & Adler, A. (2018). Positive education. In The Global Happiness Council (Ed.), Global Happiness Policy Report 2018 (pp. 53–73). New York, NY: Sustainable Development Solutions Network. Retrieved from https://www.researchgate.net/publication/323399593_Positive_Education_Seligman_M_E_P_Adler_A_2018_Positive_Education_In_J_F_Helliwell_R_Layard_J_Sachs_Eds_Global_Happiness_Policy_Report_2018_Pp_52_-_73_Global_Happiness_Council

Seligman, M. E. P., Ernst, R. M., Gillham, J., Reivich, K., & Linkins, M. (2009). Positive education: Positive psychology and classroom interventions. Oxford Review of Education, 35(3), 293–311. https://doi.org/10.1080/03054980902934563

Shogren, K. A., Wehmeyer, M. L., & Singh, N. N. (Eds.). (2017). Handbook of positive psychology in intellectual and developmental disabilities: Translating research into practice. Cham, Switzerland: Springer.

Terjesen, M. D., Jacofsky, M., Froh, J., & DiGiuseppe, R. (2004). Integrating positive psychology into schools: Implications for practice. Psychology in the Schools, 41(1), 163–172. https://doi.org/10.1002/pits.10148

Titova, L., Werner, K. M., & Sheldon, K. M. (2018). Translating positive psychology. Translational Issues in Psychological Science, 4(3), 211–214. https://doi.org/10.1037/tps0000170

Trask-Kerr, K., Chin, T.-C., & Vella-Brodrick, D. (2019). Positive education and the new prosperity: Exploring young people’s conceptions of prosperity and success. Australian Journal of Education, 000494411986060. https://doi.org/10.1177/0004944119860600

Trask-Kerr, K., Quay, J., & Slemp, G. R. (2019). A Deweyan positive education: Psychology with philosophy. Oxford Review of Education, 00(00), 1–16. https://doi.org/10.1080/03054985.2019.1625761

Vannest, K. J., Ura, S. K., Lavadia, C., & Zolkoski, S. (2019). Self-report measures of resilience in children and youth. Contemporary School Psychology. https://doi.org/10.1007/s40688-019-00252-1

Waters, L. (2011). A review of school-based positive psychology interventions. Australian Educational and Developmental Psychologist, 28(2), 75–90. https://doi.org/10.1375/aedp.28.2.75

White, M. A., & Kern, M. L. (2018). Positive education: Learning and teaching for wellbeing and academic mastery. International Journal of Wellbeing, 8(1), 1-17. https://doi.org/10.5502/ijw.v8i1.588

White, M. A., & Murray, A. S. (2015a). Building a positive institution. In M. A. White & A. S. Murray, (Eds.), Evidence-based approaches in positive education (pp. 1-26). Dordrecht: Springer Netherlands. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-94-017-9667-5_1

White, M. A., & Murray, A. S. (Eds.). (2015b). Evidence-based approaches in positive education: Implementing a strategic framework for well-being in schools. Cham, Switzerland: Springer.

Williams, Noël; Horrell, Leah; Edmiston, Dawn; and Brady, Mackenzie (2018) The impact of positive psychology on higher education, The William & Mary Educational Review, 5(1), Article 12. Retrieved from https://scholarworks.wm.edu/wmer/vol5/iss1/12



▣ 2019 — 2.8 PP 2.0 or 'second wave' PP (SWPP): The second wave of positive psychology.

⧈ From the very beginning there were concerns raised about the exclusive focus on positive aspects of human functioning. This focus was emphasized over and over, for example, “The science of positive psychology, as we see it, has three constituent parts: the study of positive subjective experience, the study of positive individual traits, and the study of institutions that enable the first two (Seligman & Csikszentmihalyi, 2000). In this chapter we shall discuss the possible changes that a science of positive psychology, if successful in becoming a discrete approach within the social sciences, would likely wreak on the field of clinical psychology” (Seligman & Peterson, 2003, p. 305). The authors continued, on the next page, to say: “Because of its explicit focus on the positive, we now think that positive psychology provides one of the best ways to help people in trouble. It should have been obvious all along that persons who are impoverished, depressed, or suicidal care about much more than the relief of their suffering. These persons care-sometimes desperately-about strength and virtue, about authenticity, about purpose, and about integrity. Furthermore, the relief of suffering very often depends on the fostering of happiness and the building of character. Positive emotion undoes negative emotion.”

⧈ In 2004, Held (p. 40) introduced a "second wave" looking at a positive psychology able to include: "the open acknowledgement and appreciation of the negative side of human existence/nature, a side that has heretofore been denied or dismissed by promoters of the movement’s dominant Message [positivity]. In this we have the inclusive, integrative, dialectical approach many psychologists have advocated since William James. And so this newer message gives me hope, including the hope that positive psychology will eventually acknowledge its debt to humanistic psychology (among other traditions) without equivocation, just as some positive psychologists now advocate the incorporation of negative human emotion and thought in the movement’s science.
But if our field must remain divided along positive and negative lines, I prefer (apropos of James) to cast my lot with the negative psychologists. After all, Shakespeare’s tragedies are no lesser plays than are his comedies, and his nuanced understanding of human nature, with all its seeming contradiction, has hardly gone uncredited. Making lemonade out of life’s many lemons is certainly one way to make life meaningful, but it is surely not the only way."

⧈ Wong, (2011b, p. 69) introduced "PP 2.0," "characterised by a balanced, interactive, meaning-centered, and cross-cultural perspective." Wong went on:  "In order to fully understand the complexity of life in its totality, it is more promising to study the paradoxical and interactive effects of positives and negatives in the next stage of development of PP. This is essentially a concept paper for PP 2.0 which complements Seligman's (1998b) original concept paper and represents part of the ongoing evolution of PP" (p. 70).

⧈ Wong's approach called for a revised definition of positive psychology: "PP may be defined as the scientific study of virtue, meaning, resilience, and well-being, as well as evidence-based applications to improve the life of individuals and society in the totality of life" (2011b, p. 72).
Wong concluded this article by saying: "PP is in flux. Given the dynamic changes in the field, PP today is already very different from what was originally proposed by Seligman. I emphasize that PP needs to synthesize the positive and negative, take a clear stance on the imperative of virtues, integrate across levels of analysis, and build constituency with all branches of mainstream psychology around the globe. I also shift the focus away from individual happiness and success to a meaning-centered approach to making life better for all people" (Wong, 2011b, p. 77).

⧈ Wong subsequently followed up: (Wong, 2011c; 2017; 2019a; 2019b; in press; Wong & Roy, 2018).

⧈ Meanwhile, 'second wave' positive psychology (SWPP) was followed-up: (Flora, 2019; Ivtzan, Lomas, Hefferon, and Worth, 2016; Lomas, 2016a, 2016b; Lomas & Ivtzan 2016).

⧈ "The present book explores a variety of topics that could be considered as part of the 'dark side' of life and emphasises the role they play in the positive aspects of our functioning and transformations as human beings. While doing this, cutting-edge theories, research, and practices are also introduced. The 'dark side' refers to challenging experiences, thoughts, emotions and behaviours which trigger discomfort in us. Such discomfort is frequently avoided as it carries an engagement with fear, pain, distress or confusion. However, engaging with the challenge and discomfort has great potential for growth, healing, insight and transformation. In other words, the 'dark side' contains the seed for a potential positive outcome, even when the path towards this outcome is testing" (Ivtzan et al., 2016, p. 1).



▣ 2019 — 2.9 References pertinent to positive psychology in general, including PP 2.0, 2012—2019.

Armstrong, L. L., Desson, S., St. John, E., & Watt, E. (2018). The D.R.E.A.M. program: Developing resilience through emotions, attitudes, and meaning (gifted edition) – a second wave positive psychology approach. Counselling Psychology Quarterly, 00(00), 1–26. https://doi.org/10.1080/09515070.2018.1559798

Barnes, C., & Mongrain, M. (2019). A three-factor model of personality predicts changes in depression and subjective well-being following positive psychology interventions. The Journal of Positive Psychology, 00(00), 1-13. https://doi.org/10.1080/17439760.2019.1651891

Baumeister, R. F., Vohs, K. D., Aaker, J. L., & Garbinsky, E. N. (2013). Some key differences between a happy life and a meaningful life. The Journal of Positive Psychology, 8(6), 505–516. http://doi.org/10.1080/17439760.2013.830764

Berrios, R., Totterdell, P., & Kellett, S. (2017). When feeling mixed can be meaningful: The relation between mixed emotions and eudaimonic well-being. Journal of Happiness Studies, (January), 1–21. http://doi.org/10.1007/s10902-017-9849-y

Blatny, M. (Ed.). (2015). Personality and well-being across the life-span. New York, NY: Palgrave Macmillan.

Brown, N. J. L. (2018). An introduction to criticality for students of positive psychology. In N. J. L. Brown, T. Lomas, & F. J. Eiroa-Orosa (Eds.), The Routledge handbook of critical positive psychology (pp. 173–192). London, England: Routledge.

Brown, N. J. L. (2018). Criticism of positive psychology. In N. J. L. Brown, T. Lomas, & F. J. Eiroa-Orosa (Eds.), The Routledge handbook of critical positive psychology (pp. 11– 13). London, England: Routledge.

Brown, N. J. L., & Rohrer, J. M. (2019). "Easy as (happiness) pie? A critical evaluation of a popular model of the determinants of well-being. Journal of Happiness Studies, (0123456789). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10902-019-00128-4 An underlying principle behind much of the research in positive psychology is that individuals have considerable leeway to increase their levels of happiness. In an influential article that is frequently cited in support of such claims, Lyubomirsky et al. (Rev Gen Psychol 9:111–131, 2005. https://doi.org/10.1037/1089-2680.9.2.111) put forward a model (subsequently popularized under the name of the 'happiness pie') in which approximately 50% of individual differences in happiness are due to genetic factors and 10% to life circumstances, leaving 40% available to be changed via volitional activities. We re-examined Lyubomirsky et al.’s claims and found several apparent deficiencies in their chain of arguments on both the empirical and the conceptual level. We conclude that there is little empirical evidence for the variance decomposition suggested by the 'happiness pie,' and that even if it were valid, it is not necessarily informative with respect to the question of whether individuals can truly exert substantial influence over their own chronic happiness level. We believe that our critical re-examination of Lyubomirsky et al.’s seminal article offers insights into some common misconceptions and pitfalls of scientific inference, and we hope that it might contribute to the construction of a more rigorous and solid empirical basis for the field of positive psychology" (p. 1).

Brown, N. J. L., Lomas, T., & Eiroa-Orosa, F. J. (2018). Introduction. In N. J. L. Brown, T. Lomas, & F. J. Eiroa-Orosa (Eds.), The Routledge handbook of critical positive psychology (pp. 1–2). London, England: Routledge.

Brown, N. J. L., Lomas, T., & Eiroa-Orosa, F. J. (Eds.). (2017). The Routledge International Handbook of Critical Positive Psychology. Routledge. https://doi.org/10.4324/9781315659794.ch12

Bulley, A. (2018). The history and future of human prospection. Evolutionary Studies in Imaginative Culture, 2(1), 75-93. https://doi.org/10.26613/esic.2.1.75

Cabanas, E. (2018). Positive psychology and the legitimation of individualism. Theory and Psychology, 28(1), 3-19. https://doi.org/10.1177/0959354317747988

Carr, A. (2020). Positive psychology and you: A self-development guide. London, England: Routledge.

Chaves, C., Lopez-Gomez, I., Hervas, G., & Vazquez, C. (2017). A comparative study on the efficacy of a positive psychology intervention and a cognitive behavioral therapy for clinical depression. Cognitive Therapy and Research, 41(3), 417-433. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10608-016-9778-9

Cohn, M. A., Fredrickson, B. L., Brown, S. L., Mikels, J. A., & Conway, A. M. (2009). Happiness unpacked: Positive emotions increase life satisfaction by building resilience. Emotion, 9(3), 361–368. https://doi.org/10.1037/a0015952

Compton, W. C. & Hoffman, E. (2020). Positive psychology: The science of happiness and flourishing. (3rd ed.). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage. "One of the most distinguishing features of positive psychology is an insistence that research must follow the standards of traditional scientific investigations (Seligman & Csikszentmihalyi, 2000). Positive psychology is certainly not the first attempt by psychologists to study well-being and the good life. From the inception of the field, there has been an interest in studying healthy personality development and optimal states of well-being. For example, in the early part of the 20th century many investigations into psychological well-being and the nature of the good life began first as scholarly analyses or as in-depth case studies of clients in psychotherapy. Attempts were then made to move the results of those studies into psychological laboratories for further experimental research or into real-life situations to help people increase well-being. Unfortunately, many of these efforts proved extremely difficult or even impossible. In light of such difficulties from the past, positive psychologists have seen need to reverse the direction of information flow. That is, many positive psychologists hope to build an experimental knowledge base in the psychological laboratory and then move those results out into real-world venues such as schools, clinics, and the workplace. Toward this end, many of the founders of positive psychology have placed considerable emphasis on promoting and developing opportunities for experimental research on psychological well-being and the potential for greater fulfillment in life" (p. 11).  … "The differences between humanistic psychology and positive psychology can be found in the focus of investigations and the greater emphasis on traditional empirical research in the latter school. Much of the emphasis in humanistic psychology—particularly early humanistic psychology—was on theories of optimal personality development such as self-actualization. Although positive psychology also investigates the potential for greater psychological development, it has tended to place greater emphasis on the well-being and satisfaction of the "average" person on the street (see the Sheldon & King quote earlier).1 Further, in terms of empirical research, positive psychologists focus more on the benefits of happiness and positive emotions such as gratitude (Lopez & Snyder, 2009). Of course, over the years, many humanistic psychologists have been actively involved in empirical research (e.g., Bohart & Greenberg, 2001; Cain & Seeman, 2001). However, humanistic psychologists tend to be more comfortable with types of research studies not based on statistical analyses, such as individual case studies or introspective phenomenological analyses. As positive psychology evolves, however, new research methods have been introduced and new topics explored. Today the differences between positive psychology and humanistic psychology are diminishing. What differences remain tend to be about philosophical assumptions rather than competing approaches to science" (p. 23).

Conoley, C. W., Pontrelli, M. E., Oromendia, M. F., Carmen Bello, B. Del, & Nagata, C. M. (2015). Positive Empathy: A therapeutic skill inspired by positive psychology. Journal of Clinical Psychology, 71(6), 575-583. https://doi.org/10.1002/jclp.22175

Csikszentmihalyi, M., Nakamura, J. (2011). Positive psychology: Where did it come from, where is it going? In K. M. Sheldon, T. B. Kashdan, & M. F. Steger, (Eds.). Designing positive psychology: Taking stock and moving forward. (pp. 2–9). New York, NY: Oxford University Press. "This is what resulted in Akumal I, [Akumal is a coastal resort on the Yucatán Peninsula] a delightful and stimulating meeting conducted mostly in swimsuits and flip-flops in a trio of adjacent villas, one of which originally belonged to the Grateful Dead. Besides the 18 who were invited, we also had with us Dr. and Mrs. Don Clifton and Dr. and Mrs. Ray Fowler. Don Clifton was the CEO of Gallup and had developed an approach to management based on developing one’s strengths rather than fixing one’s weaknesses. Ray Fowler was the supremely qualified CEO of the American Psychological Association. … The style of meetings was itself an attempt to break the mold of the typical psychology meetings: alternating informal but intense conversations with walks on the beach and snorkeling; good local dishes in the evening followed by volunteers reading their favorite poetry; and discussing it in a circle around the living room" (p. 5).

David, S. A., Boniwell, I., & Ayers, A. C. (Eds.). (2013). The Oxford handbook of happiness. Oxford, England: Oxford University Press.

Donaldson, S. I., Dollwet, M., & Rao, M. A. (2015). Happiness, excellence, and optimal human functioning revisited: Examining the peer-reviewed literature linked to positive psychology. The Journal of Positive Psychology, 10(3), 185-195. https://doi.org/10.1080/17439760.2014.943801 "More than 1300 positive psychology articles have made it through peer-review processes since the American Psychologist special issue call in 2000 for rigorous positive psychology research. Over 750 of these studies used empirical data to test hypotheses and examine important research questions. The analyses in this paper clearly show that positive psychology is a growing and vibrant sub-area within the broader field of psychology, committed to using the same rigorous scientific methods as other sub-areas, in the pursuit of understanding well-being, excellence, and optimal human functioning" (p. 193).

Driver, M. (2011). Coaching positively: Lessons for coaches from positive psychology. New York, NY: McGraw-Hill.

Edwards, M. E., & Van Tongeren, D. R. (2019). Meaning mediates the association between suffering and well-being. The Journal of Positive Psychology, 00(00), 1-12. https://doi.org/10.1080/17439760.2019.1651890

Efklides, A., & Moraitou, D., (Eds.). (2013). A positive psychology perspectives on quality of life. Dordrecht, Netherlands: Springer.

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A). Overview: 2012 and before.

Several early contributions to positive psychology were important including works by Jahoda (1958) and Maslow (1954). These early contributions were largely ignored in the recent [re–] introduction of positive psychology by Seligman and Csikszentmihalyi (2000). I have included Maslow's chapter 18 (Toward a Positive Psychology) and his appendix (Problems Generated by a Positive Approach to Psychology) from his 1954 book, Motivation and personality (See section C). I recommend that this is the first thing that should be read in a study of positive psychology. A number of scholars mention chapter 18 and state that Maslow was the first to use the term but no one I have seen has indicated the depth to which Maslow explores the concept nor does anyone refer to the important material on positive psychology in Maslow's appendix. I'm not sure how the American Psychologist could have published the article by Seligman and Csikszentmihalyi (2000) without asking them to bolster their credit to Maslow and specifically to this material. In my opinion, at best, it is very  questionable scholarship and at worst, plagiarism. Again, in my opinion, these works by Maslow should be considered the primary sources on the topic of positive psychology. By not referencing them, Seligman and Csikszentmihalyi's (2000) article became, by default, the primary reference.

Seligman introduced positive psychology as "a movement" during his term as president of the APA in 1998. He and Csikszentmihalyi followed up in 2000 with a paper introducing a special issue of the American Psychologist, devoted to positive psychology. In this seminal article, the authors presented positive psychology as a corrective to what they described as the dominant approach of modern psychology: the disease model of human functioning. The authors described three levels of analysis including the subjective (about valued subjective experiences like well–being, contentment, hope, optimism, flow and happiness); the individual level (positive psychological traits like the capacity for love, vocation, courage, perseverance, forgiveness, spirituality, high talent and wisdom) and the group level (civic virtues and institutions that facilitate citizenship, responsibility, nurturance, altruism, civility, moderation, tolerance and work ethic). The authors were hostile to the earlier efforts of humanistic psychology and called for the use of rigorous scientific standards in examining the psychology of positive human functioning (although, much of Seligman's recent research has been done using questionnaires distributed and answered through the Internet).

Positive psychology has been extremely successful on a number of fronts including over 1000 publications, numerous special issues, numerous handbooks, etc. As well, hundreds of millions of dollars have been secured to support research. Seligman has promoted positive psychology in a number of areas including psychotherapy, youth development, occupational and workplace psychology,neuroscience, coaching, educational curricula, health, and a major initiative involving the American Army. Seligman sees his efforts trying to teach positive traits and resilience in the American Army as a critical testing ground, if successful, these programs will then be implemented "in the civilian population." Part of Seligman's agenda is that most of the traits associated with positive psychology can be taught in schools and delivered while teaching any subject matter by using "embedding techniques."

Psychological concerns with happiness did not originate with Seligman. Each decade seems to have its own emphasis in looking at happiness. Clearly, earlier work would have been insightful to consider in the formulation of current approaches. I have not attempted to review the literature, however, in my section on happiness are several representative early studies.

It appears that from its inception, positive psychology has been plagued by a number of inherent and significant problems. For example, Seligman has tried to make the case that positive psychology is value neutral, however the consensus appears to be that this is an inherently impossible claim. Likewise, positive psychology appears to be inherently an American based approach, defining the good life in terms of achieving happiness and, as Seligman has emphasized, becoming a productive member of the workforce.

Seligman and Csikszentmihalyi criticized popular psychology and the various "unscientific" applications and self–help movements that developed as spinoffs of humanistic psychology. Yet, many in the positive psychology community, including Seligman himself, have done the same thing, writing books geared towards a general audience and even creating an iPhone app for being happy. Seligman created a website where for $10 a month you could get tips in being happy (www.reflectivehappiness.com).

There seems to be little consensus as to what constitutes positive psychology and literally dozens of concepts have been thrown into the mix, including:

Positive experiences, positive emotions and strengths of character are also paramount in this approach. Character strengths (positive traits reflected in thoughts feelings and behaviors) exist as individual differences and the tacit assumption is made that they can be taught. Examples include appreciation of beauty and excellence, bravery, citizenship, creativity, curiosity, fairness, forgiveness and mercy, gratitude, hope, humor, integrity, judgment, kindness, leadership, love, love of learning, modesty and humility, persistence, perspective, prudence, self–regulation, social intelligence, spirituality and zest.

Seligman has not been consistent, going from talking about "authentic happiness" as the gold standard in 2002/2009 to now rejecting this and instead looking at well–being. Instead of life satisfaction, he now considers flourishing as the ultimate goal.

One of the key assumptions of positive psychology is that positive and negative emotions fulfill different roles; negative emotions can be viewed as survival tools whereas positive emotions tend to be associated with growth and flourishing.

There appears to be a high level of naivety and a low–level of sophistication shown in many of the concepts. For example, Seligman says that he had to give up looking at the gold standard being happiness because it turned out that life satisfaction is reported by people depending upon how they feel at the moment they are asked the question. [comment: perhaps he should have read Jahoda (1958, pp. 7-8) who differentiated dispositions of personality from transitory behavior in situations: "one has the option of defining mental health in at least two ways: as a relatively constant and enduring function of the personality . . . ; or as a momentary function of personality and situation"]
This naivety may also be seen in the research efforts. For example, here is Seligman's happiness formula: "H = S + C + V where H is your enduring level of happiness, S is your set range, C is the circumstances of your life, and V represents factors under your voluntary control" (Seligman, 2002a, p. 45).
Likewise, Fredrickson and Losada (2005) suggested a simple formula where the ratio of three good thoughts to every negative thought that one experiences would constitute flourishing. The authors then slip into bafflegab when they apply chaotic analysis suggesting that a "Losada ratio" of "2.9 bifurcates the complex dynamics of flourishing from the limit cycle of languishing." (And note that a ratio above 2.9 is OK as long as you don't get too high, "the complex dynamics of flourishing first show signs of disintegration at a of positivity ratio of 11.6").
Or perhaps: "So Positive Psychology takes seriously the bright hope that if you find yourself stuck in the parking lot of life, with few and only ephemeral pleasures, with minimal gratifications, and without meaning, there is a road out. This road takes you through the countryside of pleasure and gratification, up into the high country of strength and virtue, and finally to the peaks of lasting fulfillment: meaning and purpose" (Seligman, 2002, p. xiv).

In my opinion, on the whole, the positive psychology movement has been implemented in a very chaotic and, I would argue, ultimately unproductive way. Differentiating positive psychology from negative has not been helpful, in fact, this distinction is artificial. I agree with the thrust of the recent article by McNulty and Fincham (2011): we do not need a positive psychology, what we need is a more thoughtful and more articulate approach to psychology, perhaps along the lines of a unified psychology as proposed by Sternberg and Grigorenko (2001).


Mind map of positive psychology (Smith, C., 2008)

Common acronyms encountered:

B). Various issues


1). Success of positive psychology

Popular press: "has been the darling of the popular press, making the cover of Time (Jan. 17, 2005), and featured in The Washington Post (2002), the London Sunday Times Magazine (2005), The New York, NY Times Magazine (2006), U.S. News & World Report (2009), and even a six–part BBC series (2006)" (Azar, 2011, p. 32).

Special issues: See the annotated bibliography

A dedicated journal: the Journal of Positive Psychology, founded in 2006

Journal articles: "almost 1,000 articles related to the field published in peer reviewed journals between 2000 and 2010 on topics that include well–being, pride, forgiveness, happiness, mindfulness and psychological strength — and how these attributes are related to both mental and physical health" (Azar, 2011, p. 34).

Books: See the annotated bibliography section C2

Handbooks: Gilman, Huebner, & Furlong, 2009; Linley & Joseph, 2004; Lopez & Snyder, 2004; Ong & van Dulmen, 2006; Peterson & Seligman, 2004; Synder & Lopez, 2002.

Milestone articles:

Christopher & Hickinbottom, 2008; Cowen & Kilmer, 2002; Duckworth, Steen & Seligman 2005; Fitzpatrick & Stalikas, 2008; Fredrickson, 1998, 2001, 2004; Gable & Haidt, 2005; Held, 2002; Maslow, 1965a; McNulty & Fincham, 2011; Seligman, 1998a; Seligman, 1998b; Seligman, 1998c; Seligman & Fowler, 2011; Seligman, Steen, Park & Peterson, 2005; Sternberg & Grigorenko, 2001; Taylor, 1989.

Lead: Seligman and Csikszentmihalyi (2000).
Replies: Abi-Hashem, 2001; Bacigalupe, 2001; Baltes & Staudinger, 2000; Bohart & Greening, 2001; Buss, 2000; Catania, 2001; Compton, 2001; Diener, 2000; Kelley, 2001; Lampropoulos, 2001; Larson, 2000; Lubinski & Benbow, 2000; Massimini & Delle Fave, 2000; McLaffery & Kirylo, 2001; Myers, 2000; Peterson, 2000; Ryan & Deci, 2000; Salovey, Rothman, Detweiler, & Steward, 2000; Schwartz, 2000; Shapiro, 2001; Seligman & Csikszentmihalyi, 2001; Simonton, 2000; Taylor, Kemeny, Reed, Bower, & Gruenewald, 2000; Vaillant, 2000; Walsh, 2001; Winner, 2000.

Lead: Sternberg & Grigorenko, 2001.
Replies: Chao, 2002; Chovan, 2002;. Kassinove, 2002; Kendler, 2002; Lau, 2002; & Grigorenko, 2002.

Lead: Lazarus (2003a).
Replies: Campos, 2003; Csikszentmihalyi, 2003; Diener, 2003; Folkman & Moskowitz, 2003; Harvey & Pauwels, 2003; King, 2003; Lazarus, 2003b; Lyubomirsky & Abbe, 2003; Martin, 2003; Matthews & Zeidner, 2003; Peterson & Park, 2003; Rand & Snyder, 2003; Ryff, 2003; Seligman & Pawelski, 2003; Tennen & Affleck, 2003; Young–Eisendrath, 2003.

Lead: Sheldon, K. M., Cheng, C., & Hilpert, J. (2011). Understanding well-being and optimal functioning: Applying the Multilevel Personality in Context (MPIC) model. Psychological Inquiry, 22
Replies: Deci & Ryan, 2011; Heintzelman & King, 2011; Kitayama & Na, 2011; Martin, Sanders, Shirk & Burgin, 2011; Mayer & Lang, 2011; McAdams & Manczak, 2011; Sheldon, 2011; Vallerand & Lalande, 2011.

"It is hard to think of a precedent for the rapid assimilation of positive psychology into the mainstream imagination. Clearly, that is the mark of a powerful, or at least powerfully compelling, idea." . . . "However, not all efforts in the name of positive psychology have been sound. There is an enormous flood of 'aftermarket' positive psychology products out there, and more seem to be generated every month. Consumers can get their hands on 'positive' books, services, unlicensed life coaches, motivational CD programs, and even bracelets and rocks!" . . . "There is probably little that true positive psychologists can do to defend the science from the more vulgar marketers, but the field should aggressively promote a clear vision of what science is, and what science is when it is applied to positive psychology" (Kashdan & Steger, 2011, p. 18).


2). Foundational concepts/Definitions

Comment: from the beginning Seligman didn't seem to have a clear focus on what he was looking at. For example, in one of his first publications on his new venture he introduces a presidential task force on prevention that will ultimately sponsor a special issue on prevention for the American Psychologist edited by Csikszentmihalyi, "it will ask what psychology can do to nurture highly talented children [italics added]" (Seligman, 1998a, p. 2). In this column, Seligman then goes on to ask how we can prevent problems by promoting the competence of individuals.
"We have discovered that there is a set of human strengths that are the most likely buffers against mental illness: courage, optimism, interpersonal skill, work ethic, hope, honesty and perseverance. Much of the task of prevention will be to create a science of human strength whose mission will be to foster these virtues in young people" (Seligman, 1998a, p. 2).
 "Such science and practice will prevent many of the major emotional disorders" it will also have two side effects, it will make people physically healthier and "it will also re-orient psychology to its two neglected missions, making normal people stronger and more productive as well as making high human potential actual" (Seligman, 1998a, p. 2).

"My vision is that social science will finally see beyond the remedial, and escape from the muckraking that has claimed it, that social-science will become a positive force for understanding and promoting the highest qualities of civic and personal life" (Seligman, 1998b, p. 2).

"The thorough investigation of personal strength and civic virtue will not come easily or cheaply. It can be the 'Manhattan project' of the social sciences, but it will require substantial resources. The positive social science of the 21st century will have as a useful side effect the possibility of prevention of the serious mental illnesses; for there are a set of human strengths that most likely buffer against mental courage, optimism, interpersonal skill, work ethic, hope, responsibility, future-mindedness, honesty and perseverance, to name several. But it will have as its direct effect a scientific understanding of the practice of civic virtue and of the pursuit of the best things in life" (Seligman, 1998b, p. 5).

 Comment: from what I can see, it's only in this third, that Seligman first uses the term positive psychology. The focus on highly talented children also disappears. "A focus of the convention in San Francisco and a central mission of my presidency is to nurture a science and a practice of positive psychology. Here is a progress report on the three first steps" (Seligman, 1998c, p. 2).

"The main purpose of a positive psychology is to ure, understand and then build the human strengths and the civic virtues" (Seligman, 1998c, p. 2).

"Positive psychology needs a taxonomy." . . . "Here are several ways of casting the questions about the good life. Which will be most fruitful for a taxonomy?

"We can articulate a vision of the good life that is empirically sound and, at the same time, understandable and attractive. We can show the world what actions lead to well-being, to positive individuals, to flourishing communities, and to a just society" (Seligman, 1999, p. 560).

"I look to a new social and behavioral science that seeks to understand and nurture those human strengths that can prevent the tragedy of mental illness. For it is my belief that no medication or technique of therapy holds as much promise for serving as a buffer against mental illness as does human strength. But psychology's focus on the negative has left us knowing too little about the many instances of growth, mastery, drive, and character building that can develop out of painful life events" (Seligman, 1999, p. 561).

Seligman's (1999, p. 560) initiative is to "encourage and foster the growth of the new science and profession of positive psychology."

Seligman described how he established two groups, one to look at the "characteristics of a positive life and how they can be measured and taught." The second group "seeks to transform the study of genius and extraordinary accomplishment." Seligman refers to the second group as the "Truly Extraordinary People" group. Interestingly, I don't see any further references to the work of this group. (Seligman, 1999, p. 562).

Fredrickson introduced the "Broaden and Build" theory in order to account for what positive emotions do. They broaden the breadth of thought–action repertoires and build enduring physical, intellectual and social resources (Frederickson, 1998).

Fredrickson advances a new theory describing the form and function of joy, interest, contentment, and love. In her new approach, she rejects two former common assumptions about emotion: "I propose discarding two key presumptions. The first is the presumption that emotions must necessarily yield specific action tendencies" . . . and "that emotions must necessarily spark tendencies for physical action. Some positive emotions seem instead to spark changes primarily in cognitive activity, with changes in physical activity (if any) following from these cognitive changes" (Fredrickson, 1998, p. 303). "So, in place of action tendencies, I propose speaking of thought–action tendencies" (Fredrickson, 1998, p. 303). Whereas negative emotions narrow a person's momentary thought–action repertoire, positive emotions broaden this repertoire. Thus, positive emotions "prompt individuals to discard time–tested or automatic (everyday) behavioral scripts and to pursue novel, creative, and often unscripted paths of thought and action" (Fredrickson, 1998, p. 304). Fredrickson's new paradigm also may explain how positive emotions may act to regulate negative emotions.

"Psychology sorely needs more studies on positive emotions, not simply to level the uneven knowledge bases between negative and positive emotions, but more critically, to guide applications and interventions that might improve individual and collective functioning, psychological wellbeing, and physical health" (Fredrickson, 1998, p. 300).

"We desperately need a positive psychology that provides us with information about how to build virtues like creativity, hope, future– mindedness, interpersonal skill, moral judgment, forgiveness, humor and courage and how to enhance happiness and life satisfaction" (Gillham & Seligman, 1999, p. s163).

"strengths include optimism, hope, courage, honesty, realism, putting troubles into perspective, a sense of meaning or purpose, perseverance, future– mindedness, interpersonal skill, empathy, humor and the capacity for pleasure. Studies are needed that assess psychological strengths and their relationships to therapeutic outcome" (Gillham & Seligman, 1999, p. s170).

"Mr. Seligman has written that the field's mission is not just to measure positive experience but 'to build the human strengths and civic virtues.' He proposes to identify them by looking at 'an array of paradigmatic 'good lives.' ' -- such as those of Thomas Jefferson, Eleanor Roosevelt, and Winston Churchill -- against which psychologists might measure other experiences. But critics balk at the notion of a psychologist's 'Book of Virtues'. Howard [see Kendler, 1999], a professor emeritus of psychology at the University of California at Santa Barbara, says he is troubled by any science that sets itself up as a moral authority. 'Psychology is a part of society and has its rules, but they're going beyond that now by talking about the kind of good life we should have,' he says. 'In a democracy, you have different moral principles,' and 'good lives' that may not fit a model set by the likes of Thomas Jefferson" (Ruark, 1999, pp. 6-7).

Kendler (1999) rejects positive approaches to psychology and concludes that a negative conceptualization of mental health is necessary to serve the needs of society and meet the demands of science.

"Mr. Seligman says that although he recognizes standards may vary across cultures, he believes in universals. 'We evolved biologically and created universal moral virtues.' Yet, he insists, 'I would not pretend to say what they are.'" (Ruark, 1999, p. 8).

"A science of positive, subjective experience, positive individual traits, and positive institutions promises to improve the quality of life and prevent the pathologies that arise when life is barren and meaningless" (Seligman & Csikszentmihalyi, 2000, p. 7).

Three levels: subjective, individual and group: "The field of positive psychology at the subjective level is about positive subjective experience: well–being and satisfaction (past); flow, joy, the sensual pleasures, and happiness (present); and constructive cognitions about the future—optimism, hope, and faith. At the individual level it is about positive personal traits—the capacity for love and vocation, courage, interpersonal skill, aesthetic sensibility, perseverance, forgiveness, originality, future mindedness, high talent, and wisdom. At the group level it is about the civic virtues and the institutions that move individuals toward better citizenship: responsibility, nurturance, altruism, civility, moderation, tolerance, and work ethic (Gillham & Seligman, 1999; Seligman & Csikszentmihalyi, 2000)" (Seligman, 2002b, p. 3).

This is from the Akumal manifesto (2000) on the Positive Psychology Center website, University of Pennsylvania, Retrieved July 18, 2011 from www.positivepsychology.org/akumalmanifesto.htm

Akumal Manifesto

Authors: Ken Sheldon, Barbara Frederickson, Kevin Rathunde, Mike Csikszentmihalyi, and Jon Haidt. This manifesto was originally created during the Akumal 1 meeting in January 1999, and was revised following the Akumal 2 meeting in January 2000.

1. Definition Positive Psychology is the scientific study of optimal human functioning. It aims to discover and promote the factors that allow individuals and communities to thrive. The positive psychology movement represents a new commitment on the part of research psychologists to focus attention upon the sources of psychological health, thereby going beyond prior emphases upon disease and disorder.

2. Goals To meet these objectives we must consider optimal functioning at multiple levels, including biological, experiential, personal, relational, institutional, cultural, and global. It is necessary to study a) the dynamic relations between processes at these levels, b) the human capacity to create order and meaning in response to inevitable adversity, and c) the means by which "the good life," in its many manifestations, may emerge from these processes.

3. Applications Potential applications of positive psychology include: Improving child education by making greater use of intrinsic motivation, positive affect, and creativity within schools Improving psychotherapy by developing approaches that emphasize hope, meaning, and self–healing Improving family life by better understanding the dynamics of love, generativity, and commitment Improving work satisfaction across the lifespan by helping people to find authentic involvement, experience states of flow, and make genuine contributions in their work Improving organizations and societies by discovering conditions that enhance trust, communication, and altruism between persons Improving the moral character of society by better understanding and promoting the spiritual impulse within humans. (Sheldon, Frederickson, Rathunde, Csikszentmihalyi, and Haidt, 2000)

The role of positive emotions in positive psychology:

Kennon Sheldon and Laura King (2001) describe positive psychology as follows: What is positive psychology? It is nothing more than the scientific study of ordinary human strengths and virtues. Positive psychology revisits "the average person" with an interest in finding out what works, what's right, and what's improving. It asks, "What is the nature of the efficiently functioning human being, successfully applying evolved adaptations and learned skills? And how can psychologists explain the fact that despite all the difficulties, the majority of people manage to live lives of dignity and purpose?" . . . Positive psychology is thus an attempt to urge psychologists to adopt a more open and appreciative perspective regarding human potentials, motives, and capacities (p. 216).

"So Positive Psychology takes seriously the bright hope that if you find yourself stuck in the parking lot of life, with few and only ephemeral pleasures, with minimal gratifications, and without meaning, there is a road out. This road takes you through the countryside of pleasure and gratification, up into the high country of strength and virtue, and finally to the peaks of lasting fulfillment: meaning and purpose" (Seligman, 2002, p. xiv).

"Positive feeling is a neon 'here–be–growth' marquee that tells you that a potential win–win encounter is at hand. By activating an expansive, tolerant, and creative mindset, positive feelings maximize the social, intellectual, and physical benefits that will accrue" (Seligman, 2002, p. 45).

"Positive psychology has three pillars:

"The first pillar of positive psychology is about the positive subjective experience of the past, present, and future. Positive subjective experience about the past is contentment, satisfaction, and well–being. Positive subjective experience about the present is happiness, flow, ecstasy, and the sensual pleasures. And positive subjective experience about the future is optimism and hope" (Seligman, 2003, p. xvi).

"The second pillar of the science is the investigation of positive individual characteristics: the strengths and the virtues. If we want to get the public, U.S. Congress, and the medical profession thinking about how to assess positive lives, then we need to move away from the DSM model (American Psychiatric Association, 1994). We need an alternative that is essentially the opposite of the DSM. In other words, we need a sensible classification of the strengths" (Seligman, 2003, p. xvi).

"The third pillar of positive psychology is the study of positive institutions and positive communities. Sociology has languished in the same way as psychology; it has been mostly about disabling conditions, the "isms" racism, sexism, and ageism–and how the isms ruin lives. Even if we were able to get rid of all those isms, we would still only be at zero. So positive psychology and positive sociology need to ask, 'What are the institutions that take human beings above zero?'" (Seligman, 2003, p. xvii).

"Three applications will foster the three pillars of positive psychology. The first is assessment" . . . "A second application is intervention" . . . "The third application is life–span development" (Seligman, 2003, p. xvii).

"What are the long–term aims of positive psychology? The first is fostering better prevention by buffering. The second is supplementing the available techniques for therapy by training practitioners to identify and build strengths explicitly and systematically. The third is to curtail the promiscuous victimology that pervades the social sciences" . . . "The fourth aim of positive psychology involves moving psychology from the egocentric to the philanthropic" (Seligman, 2003, p. xviii).

"In short, positive psychology is a view within scientific psychology that aims to achieve a balanced and empirically grounded body of research on human nature and social relations. In particular, positive psychology says that more work is needed in the areas of virtues, character strengths, and the social, psychological, and biological factors that enable human beings to flourish" (Keyes & Haidt, 2003, p. 4).

"positive social science assumes that human goodness and excellence are as authentic as disease, disorder, and distress" (Peterson, 2004a, p. 187).

"Positive psychology is an umbrella term for theories and research about what makes life most worth living (Seligman & Csikszentmihalyi, 2000)" (Park, Peterson, & Seligman, 2004, p. 603).

"Strengths of character and positive experiences such as a satisfied life are among the central concerns of positive psychology (McCullough & Snyder, 2000; Seligman, 2002)" (Park, Peterson, & Seligman, 2004, p. 603).

Six classes of virtue (i.e., "core virtues") (Peterson and Seligman, 2004).

You can test yourself to discover your "signature strengths" using the Values in Action (VIA) Strengths Inventory at www.viastrengths.org or at www.authentichappiness.org. A structured interview is also available at www.viastrengths.org.

In lamenting on his decision not to become a philosopher, Seligman explains "I was always a bit a fish out of water because psychology's several conceptual confusions, its wooly reasoning, and especially its complacent ignorance of the great philosophical forbears of psychology troubled me" (Seligman, 2004b. p. 2). Comment: it is my position that Seligman has done very little to alleviate psychology's "conceptual confusions and woolly reasoning", quite the contrary, he seems to have contributed to it.

"At the subjective level, positive psychology looks at positive subjective states or positive emotions such as happiness, joy, satisfaction with life, relaxation, love, intimacy, and contentment. Positive subjective states also can include constructive thoughts about the self and the future, such as optimism and hope. . . . At the individual level, positive psychology focuses on a study of positive individual traits, or the more enduring and persistent behavior patterns seen in people over time. This study might include individual traits such as courage, persistence, honesty, or wisdom. . . . Last, at the group or societal level, positive psychology focuses on the development, creation, and maintenance of positive institutions. In this area, positive psychology addresses issues such as the development of civic virtues, the creation of healthy families, the study of healthy work environments, and positive communities" (Compton, 2005, p. 4).

"one of the distinguishing features of positive psychology is a focus on what constitutes the type of life for human beings that leads to the greatest sense of well–being, satisfaction or contentment, and the good life" (Compton, 2005, p. 7).

"In positive psychology, the good life has been seen as a combination of three elements: positive connections to others, positive individual traits, and life regulation qualities"(Compton, 2005, p. 7).
Enlarging on these three aspects, Compton (2005, p. 7) says: "positive connections to others can include the ability to love, the presence of altruistic concerns, the ability to forgive, and the presence of spiritual connections to help create a sense of deeper meaning and purpose in life. Positive individual traits can include, among other elements, a sense of integrity, the ability to play and be creative, and the presence of virtues such as courage and humility. Finally, life regulation qualities are those that allow us to regulate our day–to–day behavior in such a way that we can accomplish our goals while helping to enrich the people and institutions that we encounter along the way. These qualities include a sense of individuality or autonomy, a high degree of healthy self–control, and the presence of wisdom as a guide to behavior."

"some people do not just adapt to life—they adapt extraordinarily well. Some adapt so well that they serve as role models of incredible resiliency, perseverance, and fortitude. One of the goals of positive psychology is to understand how those people manage to accomplish such high levels of thriving and flourishing" (Compton, 2005, p. 8).

"Psychology has long ignored human excellence, in part because we lack a crucial starting point: an empirically informed, consensual classification of human virtues" (Dahlsgaard, Peterson & Seligman, 2005, p. 203).

"Positive psychology is the scientific study of positive experiences and positive individual traits, and the institutions that facilitate their development" (Duckworth, Steen, & Seligman, 2005, p. 630).

"human flourishing is optimal functioning characterized by four key components: (a) goodness, indexed by happiness, satisfaction, and superior functioning; (b) generativity, indexed by broadened thought–action repertoires and behavioral flexibility; (c) growth, indexed by gains in enduring personal and social resources; and (d) resilience, indexed by survival and growth in the aftermath of adversity" (Fredrickson & Losada, 2005, p. 685).

"Positive psychology aims to broaden the focus of clinical psychology beyond suffering and its direct alleviation. Introduced as an initiative of Martin Seligman in 1998, then president of the American Psychological Association, positive psychology is the scientific study of strengths, well–being, and optimal functioning" (Duckworth, Steen, & Seligman, 2005, p. 631).

"Positive psychology is the study of the conditions and processes that contribute to the flourishing or optimal functioning of people, groups, and institutions" (Gable & Haidt, 2005, p. 104).


Mind map of positive psychology (Boniwell, 2006, p. 2).

"Aristotle believed that there was a unique daimon, or spirit within each individual, that guides us to pursue things that are right for us. Acting in accordance with this daimon leads one to happiness" (Boniwell, 2006, p. 5).

"the scientific study of optimal human functioning" . . . "at the pragmatic level, it is about understanding the wellsprings, processes and mechanisms that lead to desirable outcomes" (Linley et al., 2006, p. 8)

"As envisioned by Seligman (1998b, 1998c), positive psychology has three primary goals. The first is to delineate and measure positive traits 'that transcend particular cultures and politics and approach universality' (Seligman, 1998c, p. 1), thus putting us in a position to begin 'building' human strengths, civic virtues, and the 'good life.' The second goal is to promote positive experiences and emotions. The third is to create more positive communities and institutions that will embody and promote these strengths and experiences" (Christopher, Richardson & Slife, 2008, p. 556).

"In formulating the conceptual framework for positive psychology, we took the scientifically unwieldy notion of "happiness" and broke it down into several more quantifiable aspects: positive emotion (the pleasant life), engagement (the engaged life), and purpose (the meaningful life)" (Seligman, 2008, p. 7).

"What makes positive psychology so noteworthy is its extraordinary success in such a short time. The movement's many new journals and numerous books attract large numbers of people to join its organizations and attend its conferences, garnering significant grant and foundation support. It is noticed widely in the public media, and new graduate programs offer master's and doctoral degrees in positive psychology as a specialization" (Friedman, 2009).

Four forms of happiness (also referred to as the four forms of life):

"In the original theory (Seligman, 2002) "happiness" is decomposed into Positive Psychology and three more scientifically manageable components: positive emotion (the pleasant life), engagement (the engaged life), and meaning (the meaningful life)" (Jayawickreme, Pawelski, & Seligman, 2009, pp. 3–4).

Originally there were three lives: "positive psychology is not, and has never been, just happiology. It is the study of three very different kinds of positive lives: the pleasant life, the good life, and the meaningful life (Seligman, 2002)" (Seligman & Pawelski, 2003, p. 161).

"The pleasant life is what hedonic theories of happiness are about. This life consists in successfully pursuing positive emotion about the present, past, and future, having as much as possible (and as little negative emotion) and learning the skills that amplify the intensity and duration of the positive emotions and diminish the negative emotions" (Jayawickreme, Pawelski, & Seligman, 2009, p. 4).

"The second "happy" life in PP theory is the engaged life, a life that successfully pursues engagement, involvement and absorption in the domains of work, intimate relations, and leisure (Csikszentmihalyi, 1990). Flow is Csikszentmihalyi's term for the psychological state that accompanies highly engaging activities" (Jayawickreme, Pawelski, & Seligman, 2009, p. 6).

"The third "happy" life in PP theory involves the pursuit of purpose. This life consists in using one's signature strengths and talents to belong to and serve something that one believes is bigger than the self" (Jayawickreme, Pawelski, & Seligman, 2009, pp. 8–9).

"With the amendment introduced below, we will call this the "Authentic Happiness" theory (AH) of happiness" (Jayawickreme, Pawelski, & Seligman, 2009, p. 4).

"Therefore we now amend AH theory to postulate a fourth and different road to "happiness." The Achieving Life. A life dedicated to achieving for the sake of achievement". . . . "People who lead the Achieving Life are often absorbed in what they do, they often pursue pleasure avidly and feel positive emotion (however evanescent) when they win, and they may win partly in service of something larger" (Jayawickreme, Pawelski, & Seligman, 2009, p. 13).

"PERMA" framework, Seligman (2011):

"Thus, PP may be defined as the scientific study of virtue, meaning, resilience, and well–being, as well as evidence based applications to improve the life of individuals and society in the totality of life" (Wong, 2011, p. 72).

Seligman (2011) now says the following:
"I used to think that the topic of positive psychology was happiness, that the gold standard for measuring happiness was life satisfaction, and that the goal of positive psychology was to increase life satisfaction. I now think that the topic of positive psychology is well–being, that the gold standard for measuring well–being is flourishing, and that the goal of positive psychology is to increase flourishing. This theory, which I call well–being theory, is very different from authentic happiness theory, and the difference requires explanation.
There are three inadequacies in authentic happiness theory. The first is that the dominant popular connotation of "happiness" is inextricably bound up with being in a cheerful mood. Positive emotion is the rock–bottom meaning of happiness. Critics cogently contend that authentic happiness theory arbitrarily and preemptively redefines happiness by dragging in the desiderata of engagement and meaning to supplement positive emotion. Neither engagement nor meaning refers to how we feel, and while we may desire engagement and meaning, they are not and can never be part of what "happiness" denotes.
The second inadequacy in authentic happiness theory is that life satisfaction holds too privileged a place in the measurement of happiness. Happiness in authentic happiness theory is operationalized by the gold standard of life satisfaction, a widely researched self–report measure that asks on a 1–to– 10 scale how satisfied you are with your life, from terrible (a score of 1) to ideal (10). The goal of positive psychology follows from the gold standard–to increase the amount of life satisfaction on the planet. It turns out, however, that how much life satisfaction people report is itself determined by how good we feel at the very moment we are asked the question. Averaged over many people, the mood you are in determines more than 70 percent of how much life satisfaction you report and how well you judge your life to be going at that moment determines less than 30 percent. So the old, gold standard of positive psychology is disproportionately tied to mood, the form of happiness that the ancients snobbishly, but rightly, considered vulgar. My reason for denying mood a privileged place is not snobbishness, but liberation. A mood view of happiness consigns the 50 percent of the world's population who are "low–positive affective" to the hell of unhappiness. Even though they lack cheerfulness, this low–mood half may have more engagement and meaning in life than merry people. Introverts are much less cheery than extroverts, but if public policy is based (as we shall inquire in the final chapter) on maximizing happiness in the mood sense, extroverts get a much greater vote than introverts. The decision to build a circus rather than a library based on how much additional happiness will be produced counts those capable of cheerful mood more heavily than those less capable. A theory that counts increases in engagement and meaning along with increases in positive emotion is morally liberating as well as more democratic for public policy. And it turns out that life satisfaction does not take into account how much meaning we have or how engaged we are in our work or how engaged we are with the people we love. Life satisfaction essentially measures cheerful mood, so it is not entitled to a central place in any theory that aims to be more than a happiology.
The third inadequacy in authentic happiness theory is that positive emotion, engagement, and meaning do not exhaust the elements that people choose for their own sake. "Their own sake" is the operative phrase: to be a basic element in a theory, what you choose must serve no other master. This was Sonia's challenge; she asserted that many people live to achieve, just for achievement's sake."

four dimensions of psychological "fitness":

"five areas of fitness were identified as critical to the overall physical and psychological fitness of soldiers. These are physical, emotional, social, family, and spiritual fitness. The group focused on identifying measures of the latter four domains, since robust measures of physical fitness already exist" (Corium, Matthews, & Seligman, 2011, p. ).

In summary, so far we have:

"In sum, from a definitional standpoint, positive psychology is a positive science that conducts basic research with an eye to improving human life and functioning; its practitioners try to at least take an appreciative view of the positive aspects of human nature, even if they do not go so far as to assume that human nature is 'basically good'; they tend to study topics that are framed in positive terms rather than in polar negative terms; and they try to recognize and correct (when necessary) the negative biases regarding human nature that used to permeate the field, even as they try to remain realistic, so as not to fall prey to wishful thinking and overly rosy visions and so as not to ignore important 'negative' aspects of human nature that impact upon their topics" (Sheldon, 2011, p. 422).

Driver (2011) identified 6 themes of positive psychology most applicable to coaching; strengths, positive emotions, resilience, mindset, relationships and personal growth.

Driver (2011) identified 7 prominent authors in positive psychology; Martin Seligman; Alex Linley (Centre for Applied Positive Psychology (CAPP)); Carol Dweck; Barbara Fredrickson; Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi; Ed Diener and Robert Biswas-Diener ( CAPP).

overall happiness in life is more related to how much you are respected and admired by those around you, not to the status that comes from how much money you have stashed in your bank account. Anderson, C., Kraus, M. W., Galinsky, A. D., & Keltner, D. (2012).



3). Scope and boundary issues

"the SI [Special Issue] articles reflect many different targeted goals, some unrelated to each other or to any immediately discernible overview of positive psychology's ultimate thrust" (Cowen & Kilmer, 2002).

subfields within positive social science: Positive youth development applies the premises of positive social science to children and adolescents and the institutions that socialize them; Positive psychology approaches the individual from the positive perspective and concerns itself with the states and traits that undergird the good life; positive organizational studies takes seriously the existence of institutions that contribute to the fulfillment of its members and the larger society (Peterson, 2004a, p. 188).

Comment: it's impressive how wide a net positive psychology has cast; wider than implied above. For example, moving into areas of physical health (cancer), psychotherapy, coaching, and education to name a few.

Whereas, others fields such as moral development theory and research "have curiously not been included" (Christopher & Hickinbottom, 2008, p. 574).

In commenting on the January 2000 Special Issue [SI] of the American Psychologist, Friedman (2009) suggested that many entries seemed "largely irrelevant to positive psychology."

"The Modesty of the Theory. This is far from a "fell swoop" theory. Its scope is the empirical analysis and discovery of interventions that build positive emotion, engagement, meaning, and achievement. As above, it is not a moral theory, it is not a theory of truth, it is not a theory of justice, it is not a theory of public policy, and it is not a theory of beauty—although it bears on and may inform all these great issues. (Jayawickreme, Pawelski, & Seligman, 2009, p. 17).



4). Disconnections from historical antecedents

The term "positive psychology" originated in 1954 when Maslow titled the last chapter (chapter 18) of his book Motivation and Personality"Toward a Positive Psychology."

In this section I want to explore what Maslow had to say in 1954 because while many people refer to Maslow's use of the term in his book, very few sources discuss what he actually said in his chapter.
  Maslow said the purpose of chapter 18, Toward a positive psychology, was to discuss a major mistake made by psychologists, "namely, their pessimistic, negative, and limited conception of the full height to which the human being can attain, their totally inadequate conception of his level of aspiration in life, and their setting of his psychological limits at too low a level" (Maslow, 1954, pp. 353- 354).
  Maslow noted that "the science of psychology has been far more successful on the negative than on the positive side; it has revealed to us much about man's shortcomings, his illnesses, his sins, but little about his potentialities, his virtues, his achievable aspirations, or his full psychological height. It is as if psychology had voluntarily restricted itself to only half its rightful jurisdiction, and that the darker, meaner half" (Maslow, 1954, p. 354).
  Maslow said this was the result of a systemic problem, that psychology reflected the ideology of the world outlook, an ideology heavy on technology but neglecting humanistic principles and values. This approach stresses behavior while neglecting the inner subjective life.
  "Dynamic psychology was doomed to a negative derivation by the historical accident that psychiatry rather than experimental psychology concerned itself with the conative and emotional. It was from the study of neurotics and other sick people that we learned most of what we know about personality and motivation" (Maslow, 1954, p. 355).
  In a subsection titled "low-ceiling psychology" Maslow discusses the mechanisms by which the blindness of psychology is perpetuated. One such mechanism is that psychology "consists only of defining science strictly in terms of past and what is already known" (Maslow, 1954, p. 356). Every new question or approach is then considered unscientific and there is no opportunity to forge new ground. Maslow describes how this status quo feels comfortable and has familiarity that makes change difficult (we tend to improve our homes by adding on rather than rebuilding).
  Maslow quoted Kurt Lewin suggesting we study what is rather than what ought to be or what might be under ideal conditions because we identify the status quo with the ideal.
  Part of this perpetuation is through self-fulfilling prophecy. Our belief in the negative and in limitations becomes self-fulfilling prophecy.
  Experimental technique is another perpetuating factor. In many cases, the experimental design does not allow one to function to one's best because of the conditions. Maslow gave the example if we put tall people into a low ceiling room where they could not stand up and then we measured their height we would be measuring the height of the room and not the people inside. Self limiting methods measure only their own limitations.
  "Hamilton generalized from poor, uneducated people. Freud generalized too much from neurotic people. Hobbes and other philosophers observed masses of mankind under very bad social and economic and educational conditions and came to conclusions that ought not to be generalized to men under good economic and political and educational conditions. This we may call low-ceiling or cripple or jungle psychology, but certainly not general psychology" (Maslow, 1954, p. 359).
  "The self-derogation of psychology is another responsible factor. Out of the general cultural trends already mentioned, psychologists tend to admire the technologically advanced sciences, physics, chemistry, biology, more than they do psychology, in spite of the fact that from the humanistic point of view psychology is obviously the new frontier, and by far the most important science today" (Maslow, 1954, p. 359).
  We measure how intelligent an individual is under some actual condition but we do not measure how intelligent an individual could be under the best conditions. Measurement of the actual is inherently pessimistic compared to the theoretical measurement of what might be–the potentiality.
  "If one is preoccupied with the insane, the neurotic, the psychopath, the criminal, the delinquent, the feeble-minded, one's hopes for the human species become perforce more and more modest, more and more realistic, more and more scaled down. One expects less and less from people" (Maslow, 1954, p. 360). [This reminds me of a quote attributed to Freud: "the more people I met, the less I liked people"] Maslow went on: "The exclusive study of our failures and breakdowns will hardly breed inspiration, hopefulness, and optimistic ambitions in either the layman or the scientist" (Maslow, 1954, p. 360).
  "In a word, if we are interested in the psychology of the human species we should limit ourselves to the use of the self-actualizing, the psychologically healthy, the mature, the fulfilled, for they are more truly representative of the human species than the usual average or normal group. The psychology generated by the study of healthy people could fairly be called positive by contrast with the negative psychology we now have, which has been generated by the study of sick or average people" (Maslow, 1954, p. 361).
  "This presents us with our practical difficulty of getting together large enough groups of individuals with whom to do statistically sound experimentation. This I have managed without too much loss of principle by arbitrarily using the best one out of one hundred of the general college population (the psychiatrically healthiest 1 percent). The other 99 percent are then discarded as imperfect, immature, or crippled specimens" (Maslow, 1954, p. 361).

Maslow subsequently wrote in the preface to the second edition:
"I have decided to omit the last chapter of the first edition of this book, 'Toward a Positive Psychology'; what was 98 percent true in 1954 is only two–thirds true today. A positive psychology is at least available today though not very widely. The humanistic psychologies, the new transcendent psychologies, the existential, the Rogerian, the experiential, the holistic, the value–seeking psychologies, are all thriving and available, at least in the United States, though unfortunately not yet in most departments of psychology" (Maslow, 1987, p. xxviii).

"It would seem, consequently, to be more fruitful to tackle the concept of mental health in its more positive connotation, noting, however, that the absence of disease may constitute a necessary, but not a sufficient, criterion for mental health" (Jahoda, 1958, pp. 14-15).

"Psychology ought to become more positive and less negative. It should have higher ceilings, and not be afraid of the loftier possibilities of the human being.
One major shortcoming of research psychology, and psychiatry as well, is its pessimistic, negative and limited conception of the full height to which the human being can attain. Partly because of this preconception, it has so far revealed many of man's shortcomings, weaknesses and ills, but few of his virtues, potentialities or higher aspirations. In the book to which I have referred I have made a number of positive suggestions for needed research. This is not a call for optimism. Rather it is a demand for realism in the best sense of the word. It is ridiculous to identify realism with darkness, misery, pathology and breakdown, as so many contemporary novelists have done. Happiness is as real as unhappiness; gratification is as real as frustration; love is as real as hostility.
However, I want to stress the most important single example of this mistake, namely, the contrast between our knowledge of psychological sickness and our wholly inadequate attention to psychological health" (Maslow, 1965a, p. 27).

"In the 16 articles [in the January 2000 Special Issue of the American Psychologist], 178 pages, and over 1,300 references in this issue, I found extremely few (approximately 6, or 0.4%) references to the seminal and foundational works of Rogers, Maslow, May, Bugental, Bühler, Combs, Carkhuff, and many others, some of whom have done widely respected quantitative investigations" (Shapiro, 2001, p. 82)

"I well recognize that positive psychology is not a new idea. It has many distinguished ancestors (e.g., Allport, 1961; Maslow, 1971). But they somehow failed to attract a cumulative and empirical body of research to ground their ideas" (Seligman, 2002, p. 7).

"A serious limitation of how positive psychology has been presented has been its profound neglect of past contributions as well as the broad scope of current research dealing with positive, healthy, adaptive functioning" (Ryff, 2003, p. 155).

In looking at the pragmatism of William James, Lacks (2004, p. 2) makes the following observation: "Pragmatists focus their efforts on the intelligent and energetic improvement of life. Their primary interest resides in enhancement, not remediation. In this, they are in complete agreement with positive psychologists."

William James: "Healthy-minded individuals believe evil is not an essential component of the world. For healthy-minded individuals, the way to a joyful and meaningful life lies through minimizing our awareness of evil. By ignoring or reinterpreting our experiences of it, they hold, we transform evil into good" (Pawelski, 2003, p. 53).

"James addresses the question of dynamogenesis, of how to raise our levels of mental and moral energy. That we all have levels of such energy that we normally do not tap is made evident, for James, by a consideration of what we call 'second wind'" (Pawelski, 2003, p. 57).

James calls for a new psychology that will address two fundamental issues, as quoted by Pawelski (2003, p. 59): " 'We ought somehow to get a topographic survey made of the limits of human power in every conceivable direction, something like an ophthamologist's [sic] chart of the limits of the human field of vision'. The second problem is one of means. He writes, '[W]e ought . . . to construct a methodical inventory of the paths of access, or keys, differing with the diverse types of individual, to the different kinds of power.'"
Pawelski (2003, p. 60) goes on to compare the development of the Values in Action Classification of Strengths Manual (Peterson and Seligman 2003) with the chart of human powers described by James.

The methodology of James: James was concerned laboratory approaches were too narrow and his solution was "to comb historical and biographical materials in search of accounts of individuals who have actually had the kinds of religious experiences he is studying. He takes as his data on conversion first-hand accounts of individuals who have experienced a conversion" (Pawelski, 2003, p. 61). I think this is the same sort of approach used by Maslow and Dąbrowski.

An important issue is brought up by James involving the distinction between accounts of the moment versus memories of one's experiences. As Daniel Kahneman, has elaborated, there are fundamental differences between momentary experiences and the remembered experience of those events.

"The excitement of the responsibilities of a new position, for example, energizes us to work harder to meet them. Crises such as shipwrecks, battles, and-I might add-national tragedies call up levels of energy in us we had no idea were there" (Pawelski, 2003, p. 58).

"we propose that William James's focus on belief in The will to believe and habit in The principles of psychology provides a useful philosophical foundation and interpretation of the role of optimism, hope, and faith, as contributors to quality of life. Likewise, James's discussion of disposition in The varieties of religious experience offers an important criticism to many contemporary assumptions of positive psychology. One recent writer has suggested that, were James to return to the field today, he would want to explore the role of knowledge, action, and hope as elements of coping—to study human nature as people struggle to be good at being human (Howard 1992)" (Keith & Keith, 2004, p. 5).

"Thus, optimism, hope, and happiness are learned habits that constitute our orientation to the world. Like any habits, these are difficult to cultivate, require constant practice, and are best planted early on. Education, social interaction, interpersonal relationships, and the quality of our institutions all ground our orientation to a precarious world" (Keith & Keith, 2004, p. 7).

"Almost 40 years ago, Abraham Maslow (1965a) proclaimed that "Psychology ought to become more positive and less negative. It should have higher ceilings, and not be afraid of the loftier possibilities of the human being" (p. 27)" (Keyes & Haidt, 2003, p. 5).

"Nearly 50 years ago Allport (1955) lamented the prominence of theories of human experience based on weakness, despair, and pathology, and he, like his modern counterparts, called on psychologists to investigate positive characteristics such as courage and wisdom. Frankl (1967) proposed that a 'height psychology' be added to Freud's depth psychology in order to do justice to the positive side of human functioning. And Maslow (1968) advocated for the 'direct study of. . . healthy rather than sick people' (p. 156). His designation for this field of inquiry that would focus on psychologically healthy individuals was, in fact, positive psychology. More than 30 years ago Wilson (1972) described Maslow's work as 'revolutionary' precisely because it focused on psychological health. Rogers (1961) too viewed as revolutionary the 'growing recognition that the. . . deepest layer of. . . personality. . . is positive in nature' (p. 91)." (Tennen & Affleck, 2003, p. 165).

Seligman seems to try to respond to the criticisms: "Humanistic psychology is the field most identified with the study and promotion of positive human experience. In a special positive psychology edition of the Journal of Humanistic Psychology, contributors traced the roots of positive psychology to the academic humanist psychology movement (cf. Resnick et al. 2001). The grandparents of humanistic psychology—Carl Rogers, Abraham Maslow, Henry Murray, Gordon Allport, and Rollo May—all grappled with many of the same questions pursued by positive psychologists (Sheldon & Kasser 2001)." (Duckworth, Steen, & Seligman, 2005, p. 632).

"In the 20th century, many prominent psychologists focused on what later became the subject matter of positive psychology. Amongst them were Carl Jung with his individuation, or 'becoming all that one can be' concept 3, Maria Jahoda, concerned with defining positive mental health 4 and Gordon Allport, interested in individual maturity 5. Since then, the matters of flourishing and wellbeing were raised in the work on prevention 6 and wellness enhancement 7. The most notable of positive psychology's predecessors, however, was the humanistic psychology movement, which originated in the 1950s and reached its peak in the 60s and 70s. This movement placed central emphasis on the growth and authentic self of an individual. Humanistic psychologists were critical of pathology oriented approaches to a human being. The most famous ones were Carl Rogers, who introduced the concept of the fully functioning person, and Abraham Maslow, who emphasised self-actualization. In fact it was Maslow who was the very first to use the term positive psychology" (Boniwell, 2006, p. 5).

"Rightly or wrongly, positive psychology tends to present itself as a new movement, often attempting to distance itself from its origins" (Boniwell, 2006, p. 6).


(Boniwell, 2006, p. 6).

"Positive psychology represents a partial revival of the Maslowian vision and a rejection of its epistemological and methodological breadth. According to Seligman and Csikszentmihalyi (2000), Maslow strayed from the 'true path' of science and thereby blurred the boundaries between popular and academic psychology. As Taylor (2001) has noted, such criticisms do little justice to the complexity of Maslow's thought, but perhaps more disconcertingly, they reveal the degree to which psychology is still mired in the same 'safety science' insecurities that Maslow identified all those years ago. Psychologists are still fretting over their disciplinary masculinity, still feeling the need to declare themselves 'unblushingly scientists first' (Seligman & Csikszentmihalyi, 2001, p.89) and still allowing simplistic, dated appeals to salvation through positivistic science to pass as intellectual innovation. In such a context, Maslow's example of intellectual openness, critical self-reflection, and philosophical curiosity is as relevant as ever" (Nicholson, I., 2007, p. 27).

"Positive psychologists have often compared their movement to that of their immediate predecessors, humanistic psychologists. We examine other historical predecessors of positive psychology. One is New Thought, one of several popular 'mind cure' movements that emphasized the transformational power of thought (Anker, 1999; Hale, 1971; Satter, 1999). Another is mental hygiene, which, like positive psychology, figured itself as a 'movement' and purported to use scientific methods to determine the conditions necessary to produce satisfied, industrious, and well–adjusted individuals. Yet another predecessor is social work, a discipline that, although sharing positive psychology's orientation to shoring up human strengths, has also continually advocated for social change and social justice" (Becker & Marecek, 2008, p. 592).

"I think it would be more felicitous to talk about today's movement as "third–generation positive psychology." "First–generation positive psychology" would then refer to the self–fulfillment agenda of humanistic psychology, and "second– generation positive psychology" to the intelligence–and adaptability approaches prevailing at the close of the 20th century, as well as to those current versions of positive psychology that place less emphasis on authenticity, meaning, and morality, and more on subjective well–being, than Seligman and Peterson do. Woolflock and Wasserman (2005) suggest an alternative terminology according to which today's virtue–based positive psychology would be counted as "second–generation," while positive psychology in its original formulation (see, especially, Seligman & Csikszentmihalyi's, 2000, manifesto) would be "first–generation" (cf. also Held, 2005). I would object to this terminology because it not only overlooks positive psychology's 20th–century heritage, but also it assumes that Seligman had a radical change of mind concerning the nature of the good life between 2000 and his 2004 work with Peterson. I fail, however, to see any evidence to support this. Quite the contrary: Seligman already waxes virtue–ethical in his 2000 piece with Csikszentmihalyi (see, especially, p. 8)." (Kristjansson, 2010, p. 298).



5). Conceptual confusions/Vague conceptualizations/general criticisms

Commentary: Several articles have highlighted various issues and concerns with the concept of positive psychology (Cowen & Kilmer, 2002; Joseph & Linley, 2006; Held, 2004 ; Kristjansson, 2010; Lazarus, 2003; Lambert, & Erekson, 2008; Sugarman, 2007; Sundararajan, 2005; Taylor, 2001; Woolfolk & Wasserman, 2005; Woolfolk, 2002). Others have been critical of some of the specific conceptualizations presented by Seligman, for example, Seligman cited Aristotle and his concept of eudaimonia. Woolfolk and Wasserman (2005) found Seligman's interpretation "highly idiosyncratic" and ultimately a problem. Ultimately and most disturbingly of all, these authors cite an example that calls into question the attention to detail and ultimately the veracity of Seligman's scholarship.

"This, then, is the general stance of positive psychology toward prevention. It claims that there is a set of buffers against psychopathology: the positive human traits" (Seligman, 2002, p. 5). [what are positive human traits?]

"Experiences that induce positive emotion cause negative emotion to dissipate rapidly. [do they really?] The strengths and virtues function to buffer against misfortune and against the psychological disorders, and they may be the key to building resilience. Thus, positive psychology may become still more important in times of trouble, even though a bleeding nation may not easily see that, in the long run, building strength and virtue effectively stanches wounds" (Seligman, 2003, p. xii).

"[But the cost of these victories was that] psychology forgot its other two missions. It forgot that it is also about making the lives of normal people more fulfilling, more productive, and happier. It also forgot that one of its tasks is to nurture genius, to identify our most precious resource–talented young people–and find the conditions under which they will flourish. Genius and talent have become almost dirty words now, and it is incumbent on psychologists to make them respectable concepts once more" (Seligman, 2003, p. xv). [This is somewhat conceptually challenged: he just kind of lumps in genius as an afterthought here. So, do we have a positive psychology approach for average people and another for genius? Is genius the apex of positive psychology?]

"A collector of Wittgensteinobilia, Seligman has never found a photo of Wittgenstein smiling. Wittgenstein was depressive, irascible, and scathingly critical of everyone around him and even more critical of himself. In a typical seminar held in his cold and barely furnished Cambridge rooms, he would pace the floor muttering, "Wittgenstein, Wittgenstein, what a terrible teacher you are." Yet his last words give the lie to hedonics. Dying alone in a garret in Ithaca, New York, NY, he said to his landlady, "Tell them it's been wonderful!" (Seligman & Pawelski, 2003, p. 161).

[Seligman often repeats his stories and tells us one again:]

"Wittgenstein's alleged last words: "Tell them it's been wonderful!" Uttered by a very dysphoric man, who while low in all senses of Liking was nevertheless high in engagement, meaning, and achievement. We take Wittgenstein's considered use of words in dead earnest" (Jayawickreme, Pawelski, & Seligman, 2009, p. 22).

Yet, in reference to the above Woolfolk and Wasserman (2005, p. 86) challenge this interpretation saying: "This would be a wonderfully illustrative story if it were true."

Seligman tries to distance himself from "positive thinking" (harking back to The power of positive thinking by Norman Vincent Peale) "positive thinking is an "armchair" activity. Positive psychology, on the other hand, is tied to a program of empirical and replicable scientific activity. Second, positive thinking urges positivity on us for all times and places, but positive psychology does not hold a brief for positivity. Positive psychology recognizes that in spite of the several advantages of positive thinking, there are times when negative thinking might be preferred" (Seligman & Pawelski, 2003, p. 161).

"A positive psychology that declares its independence from research in the areas of stress, coping, and adaptation; that insists on making qualitative distinctions between seemingly positive and negative human characteristics; that determines a priori and without attention to context those characteristics that will be studied as strengths; that follows psychology's most intractable methodological bad habits and then wears those habits as a merit badge; that distances itself from its predecessors; and that dismisses its critics as suspicious or closed-minded is, to use Lazarus's terminology, a movement without legs" (Tennen & Affleck, 2003, p. 168).

In order to define flourishing one can look at one's positivity/negativity ratio (P/N), that is, the ratio of good thoughts/positive feedback (e.g. "that is a good idea";) vs. negative thoughts/negative feedback (e.g. "this is not what I expected; I am disappointed"). Ideally, a ratio of about three good thoughts to every negative thought would constitute flourishing. (Fredrickson & Losada, 2005).
"Mathematically, then, a positivity ratio of about 2.9 bifurcates the complex dynamics of flourishing from the limit cycle of languishing. We call this dividing line the Losada line. From a psychological standpoint, this ratio may seem absurdly precise. Yet we underscore that this bifurcation point is a mathematically derived theoretical ideal. Empirical observations made at various levels of measurement precision can test this prediction" (Fredrickson & Losada, 2005, p. 683).
"Our discovery of the critical 2.9013 positivity ratio may represent a breakthrough" (Fredrickson & Losada, 2005, p. 685). In other words, the Losada line establishes the minimum level at which a "complexor" is reached and is equal to a P/N of 2.9013.
In looking at the performance of business teams, Losada and Heaphy (2004, p. 740) found that "knowing the P/N ratio it is possible to run the nonlinear dynamics model that will portray what types of dynamics are possible for a team. These dynamics are of three types: point attractor, limit cycle, and complexor (complex order, or "chaotic" in the mathematical sense). Low performance teams end up in point attractor dynamics, medium performance teams in limit cycle dynamics, and high performance teams in complexor dynamics."

"The professional jargon includes recurring words like flow, optimism, resilience, courage, virtues, energy, flourishing, strengths, happiness, curiosity, meaning, subjective well–being, forgiveness, and even joy" (Lambert, 2007, p. 26).

"Although positive psychologists frequently mention virtue, it remains conceptually underdeveloped in their writings" (Fowers, 2008, p. 629).

"Virtue is a colloquial term and authors often seem to rely on their everyday understanding of the term rather than carefully studying the concept and its applications. This use of common–sense understandings of virtue has led to conceptual confusion and some misguided recommendations" (Fowers, 2008, p. 630).

"What is sometimes referred to as the 'science of happiness' gives politicians more hope. Also called positive psychology, it asks why, to quote Freud, psychology not only might replace neurotic unhappiness with normal unhappiness but also turn normal unhappiness into positive happiness. Positive psychology studies the various factors that could contribute to this transformation. Martin Seligman, the movement's founder, is modest about what it can attain – a 10 to 15 per cent rise in happiness in the average person – which is perhaps why his insights often sound like so much motherhood and apple–pie: 'work less', 'maintain the family', 'keep fit', 'find meaning'. Living in a 'wealthy democracy' not an 'impoverished dictatorship' takes first place on Seligman's list of external effects that can raise your happiness levels. And now a cure for cancer, professor!" (Vernon, 2008, p. 18).

"I conclude that this encyclopedia [Lopez, 2009] further proves that positive psychology is insufficiently developed to warrant an encyclopedia that presents it as a comprehensive area" (Friedman, 2009).

"[That] positive and negative affectivity are normally distributed. This means that some people, no matter what their subjective experiences, will not feel much. These people are low in feelings and may be low in satisfaction as well; they are systematically undercounted and discriminated against by any theory or public policy (heaven forbid!) that merely totes up the amount of positive emotion and the amount of satisfaction to decide if a given life is happy or a given policy worth spending tax money on" (Jayawickreme, Pawelski, & Seligman, 2009, p. 22).

Here is another example of what I would call a questionable conceptualization: "PP [Positive psychology] cannot resist saying that part of what alienates us from classical and contemporary philosophy is the habit of sheer grandiosity in its theory making. Aristotle wanted to solve the problem of happiness, truth, and justice in one fell swoop—with the same few tools. We think this kind of theorizing to be an error" (Jayawickreme, Pawelski, & Seligman, 2009, pp. 17–18). It seems to me that the grandiosity and immodesty of positive psychology is overwhelming especially in Seligman's writings.

"As far back as 1954 Maslow used the term positive psychology so it is not necessarily a new and recent concept or field of study. What is new is the hype and controversy which surrounds this discipline. It connotates, for many, self–help and New Age movements and given the speed with which many of its psychologists have jumped on the self–help book bandwagon this is hardly surprising. Publish or perish should not mean anywhere at any cost. These pop culture enthusiasts bring the whole discipline of psychology into disrepute" ("Positive psychology: Where the big bucks are," 2010, para. 5).

"By marshalling perceptive, subtly nuanced, quantitative and qualitative data, we may discover a very different portrait of the "flourishing" person. This portrait would likely unveil a many textured personality – closer to Zorba the Greek, than to Dick or Jane who may well keep a clean and orderly life, but who, at the same time, may also quietly endorse a materialist, militarist, and imperialist lifestyle. How else will we find out about such discrepancies unless we employ methodologies that cut beneath the deceptive surfaces of human performance (Shedler, Mayman, Manis, 1993)" (Schneider, 2011, p. 36).

"Coyne believes the field's translation to practical applications has moved faster than the science and has been swept up by popular culture, self–help gurus and life coaches. He points to companies, including FedEx, Adobe and IBM, that are hiring "happiness coaches" to work with employees, schools that are embedding positive psychology in their curriculum and the Army, which is hoping to reach all its 1.1 million soldiers with its resiliency training. And he bristles at the books coming out of the field with titles, such as 'The How of Happiness'" (Azar, 2011, p. 34).



6). Prescriptive issues / ethnocentric – Americentric position / problem of values

"the crux of the difficulty of assimilating 'mental health' to psychology is the fact that 'science has not yet learned how to deal surefootedly with values' (p. 673). Any progress toward clarity in psychological thinking about mental health, I am increasingly convinced, depends on our becoming clearer, as psychologists, about how we are to think about values" (Smith, 1961, p. 300).

"It is when we want to talk about positive criteria of psychological functioning that we encounter the value problem head on. A good starting point for the present discussion, then, is to ask why we ever got ourselves into this difficult, intellectually treacherous business of positive mental health. Are not the problems of mental disorder enough? Why should the mental health movement be impelled, as it has been since the clays of Clifford Beers (cf. Joint Commission on Mental Illness and Health, 1961), to extend itself to concern with the 'mental hygiene' of promoting positive mental health—in the absence of firm knowledge or clear guidelines?" (Smith, 1961, p. 300).

"Knowing that he lacks a scientifically sanctioned single set of mental health criteria, the psychologist in his consulting or service or educational relationships will hesitate to prescribe the nature of the good life to others in the name of psychology" (Smith, 1961, p. 304).

"What is to be avoided is the surreptitious advocacy of values disguised under presumptive scientific auspices. The lists of psychological desiderata that psychologists have continued to propose, each reflecting the value commitments of its proponent, have this drawback insofar as they are offered as 'criteria of positive mental health.' But there is nothing surreptitious, nothing illegitimate, in using evaluative dimensions such as those that appear on these lists to appraise behavior and personality, so long as the value position one takes is explicit. And there is much to be gained from psychological study of the empirical antecedents, consequences, and interrelations of realizing different values in the sphere of personality" (Smith, 1961, p. 306).

"Academic psychology is too exclusively Western. It needs to draw on Eastern sources as well. It turns too much to the objective, the public, the outer, the behavioral, and should learn more about the subjective, the private, the inner, the meditative. Introspection, thrown out as a technique, should be brought back into psychological research" (Maslow, 1965a, p. 30). Comment: in my opinion, this is an important message that Seligman did not appear to hear.

"studies suggest that what is currently known about the healthy self in the European American psychological literature may be primarily representative of reasonably well–educated, middle–class Americans. The healthy self may well assume a different form and have a different meaning among those whose daily lives foster and promote a self that is other than autonomous, agentic, and in control" [that is, for example, in comparison to many East Asian contexts] (Keough & Markus, 1998, p. 50).

Kendler (1999) builds the case that the holistic approach in which human values can be informed by science is false. He is critical of the idea "that values inhere in human experience; they have the quality of objective requiredness. By perceiving one's own values as empirical facts, one is afforded a sense and direction in one's life" (Kendler, 1999, p. 830). He goes on to reject the notion that we can move from what is by generating a conceptualization of what ought to be. "The argument that an enchanted view of science can reveal moral principles that are right for humankind fails to offer a coherent prescription as to how this goal is to be attained. The assumption that psychological facts will lead directly to moral truths is contradicted by the failure of is to logically generate ought. In addition, the premise that a monistic moral code exists that is 'right for humankind' is on equally shaky ground" (Kendler, 1999, p. 832).

"Mr. Seligman says that although he recognizes standards may vary across cultures, he believes in universals. 'We evolved biologically and created universal moral virtues.' Yet, he insists, 'I would not pretend to say what they are.'" (Ruark, 1999, p. 8).

"the study of moral development is emerging from a 30–year period during which post–Kantian conceptions held sway, and for some time to come nearly everything that is done within moral psychology will be framed as a response to them" . . . "Lawrence Kohlberg and his followers defined the moral domain so narrowly that only issues of rights and interpersonal justice qualified for inclusion. Following the Kantian tradition, they restricted the scope of moral development to formulating moral rules or principles and reasoning with them. Moral emotions, actions and personality were ruled out as topics of inquiry; virtues were actively derided; moral personality was dismissed as incoherent" (Campbell, Christopher, & Bickhard, 2002, p. 796).

"It is indeed hard to describe mature thought, feeling and action as they develop within disparate moral viewpoints. It is also hard to explain how the same general processes and constraints could lead to vastly different outcomes: different ways of thinking about moral issues, different sorts of moral personalities. Yet moral development, for different individuals, may be movement toward being a dutiful Christian, a ritual–observing Confucian, a perfect gentleman, an all–around caring person, one who balances all of the competing goods by exercising practical wisdom—or even a staunch gang loyalist who never rats to the cops" (Campbell, Christopher, & Bickhard, 2002, p. 798).

"In the eudaimonistic tradition, human beings ought to develop virtues because these are conducive to eudaimonia, or human flourishing—which has both individual and social aspects. Moreover, there is no algorithm for achieving human flourishing; each individual must acquire and exercise a form of expertise called phronesis—practical wisdom or prudence—in striking a balance of competing goods in a particular context" (Campbell, Christopher, & Bickhard, 2002, p. 799).

"Research in the positive youth development tradition has taken seriously the role of moral and religious beliefs in shaping children's identities and perspectives on the future" (Damon, 2004, p. 21).

"A person's use of moral beliefs to define the self is called a person's moral identity. When a person decides that 'the kind of person I am' or 'the kind of person I want to be' is dependent upon a moral belief (as opposed to, say, a physical characteristic such as being athletic, a material characteristic such as being rich, an intellectual characteristic such as being smart, and so on), the person has formed the basis of a moral identity" (Damon, 2004, pp. 21–22).

"The goals of positive science are therefore description and explanation as opposed to prescription. The underlying premise of positive social science is of course prescriptive in that it says that certain topics should be studied. But once the study begins, it needs to be hardheaded and rigorous. The routes to the good life are an empirical matter. Indeed, whether what seems positive is always desirable is also an empirical question" (Peterson, 2004a, pp. 188–189) versus "It might be helpful for the field of youth development—especially when it makes policy recommendations—to consider how to align the field with the values of the larger culture and to avoid the common threats to alignment" (Peterson, 2004a, p. 199).

"If asked what they most desire for their children, few parents would say in the abstract that falling short of diagnostic criteria is their primary wish. Rather, parents want their children to be safe, healthy, happy, moral, and fully engaged in life. These are the ultimate goals not only of all parents but of all societies" (Peterson, 2004b, p. 7).

From is to ought: "A young person's moral identity determines not merely what the person considers to be the right course of action but also why the person would decide that 'I myself must take this course.' One researcher wrote that if people see 'a value or a way of life as essential to their identity, then they feel that they ought to act accordingly' (Nisan 1996, 83)" (Damon, 2004, p. 22).

"Young people differ greatly in the degree to which they think of themselves in terms of moral beliefs and goals. This difference continues throughout life, with some people finding moral purposes to dedicate themselves to and others consigning moral concerns to a relatively marginal position in their lives. This difference may be determinative of life outcomes ranging from personal satisfaction (or "authentic happiness," as Martin Seligman calls it) to altruistic social behavior" (Damon, 2004, pp. 22–23).

"The once–accepted notion that it is necessary to be value neutral out of respect for the child's autonomy as well as for scientific objectivity has been largely discarded in recognition of children's undeniable need for moral and spiritual guidance and of science's inevitable grounding in values" (Damon, 2004, p. 23).

"The authors found that 6 core virtues recurred in these writings: courage, justice, humanity, temperance, wisdom, and transcendence. This convergence suggests a nonarbitrary foundation for the classification of human strengths and virtues" (Dahlsgaard, Peterson & Seligman, 2005, p. 203).

"The value–free assumption does not merely contradict many of the conclusions that positive psychologists wish to draw. It impedes the future growth of positive psychology, because it provides no incentive for developing the conceptual resources to recognize cultural values and assumptions" (Christopher & Campbell, 2008, p. 676).

"Given the inescapability of such cultural values and assumptions, we recommend giving up our pretensions to value–neutrality, instead adopting an approach that Bellah and his colleagues have termed social science as moral inquiry or social science as public philosophy (Bellah et al., 1985; Haan, Bellah, Rabinow, & Sullivan, 1983). From this perspective, positive psychology, like the social sciences more broadly, would be acknowledged to be 'a tradition, or set of traditions, deeply rooted in the philosophical and humanistic (and, to more than a small extent, the religious) history of the West' (Bellah et al., 1985, p. 301)" (Christopher & Campbell, 2008, pps. 691–692).

"Positive psychology, under the prompting of Seligman, maintains that it is possible to pursue psychology as a kind of descriptive or objective science that avoids prescriptive recommendations. All of the articles in the special issue challenge this contention. Several argue that despite Seligman's efforts to be solely descriptive, he clearly endorses and promotes a number of substantive moral and cultural values and outlooks" (Christopher, Richardson & Slife, 2008, p. 558).

"[But] it is our contention that positive psychology is doomed to being narrow and ethnocentric as long as its researchers remain unaware of the cultural assumptions underlying their work" (Christopher & Hickinbottom, 2008, p. 565).

"despite the best of intentions and efforts to be culture–free and descriptive, not prescriptive, positive psychology is pervaded by Western cultural values and assumptions" (Christopher & Hickinbottom, 2008, p. 565).

While most psychologists agreed that the discipline should examine the brighter aspects of human functioning, many (e.g., Ahuvia, 2001; Bacigalupe, 2001; Brand, 2001; Compton, 2001; Walsh, 2001) expressed concern that the proposed science seemed ethnocentric and narrowly focused on the values of Western culture (Christopher & Hickinbottom, 2008, p. 563).

[recently published] Character Strengths and Virtues: A Handbook and Classification (Peterson & Seligman, 2004), which purports to have identified positive traits that transcend temporal and cultural boundaries. Its authors claim that the effort to include only universally valued traits was motivated by the 'worry we would create a list of characteristics that reflected only our own take on the good life' (p. 20), and that the six virtues (courage, justice, humanity, temperance, wisdom, and transcendence) identified as ubiquitous, if not universal, provide a 'non–arbitrary basis for focusing on certain virtues rather than others' (p. 51). (Christopher & Hickinbottom, 2008, p. 563).

"positive psychology is based largely on dominant Western, and particularly American, ideologies of 'individualism' or 'liberal individualism.'" (Christopher & Hickinbottom, 2008, p. 566).

Our historical reckoning has demonstrated positive psychology's indebtedness to a distinctly American strain of individualism as well as its kinship with earlier movements that have sought to promote health, happiness, and adjustment. We have also suggested that positive psychology solves some important problems for present–day psychologists, both researchers and practitioners. By problematizing new aspects of human 'being,' it stakes out new territory for psychology. Mapping the territory of virtue, 'flow,' flourishing, and happiness is said to demand expertise that only psychological researchers can offer. At the same time, attaining happiness, individual strength, and good character is purported to require the application of therapeutic and other technologies that only highly trained professionals can deliver (Becker & Marecek, 2008, p. 601).

"In our view, positive psychology's neglect of social context and its inadequate attention thus far to the experiences of diverse social groups, especially those in subordinated positions, result at least in part from its allegiance to certain epistemological and methodological commitments of North American psychology" (Becker & Marecek, 2008, p. 598).

"Seligman and Csikszentmihalyi (2000) and Peterson and Seligman (2004) argued that their reasoning, and their prescriptions for happiness and well–being, are based on empirical evidence, obtained via a strict adherence to the positivist scientific method, which is presumed to provide a high degree of transparency. 'What seemed to be lacking, however, was a vision that justified the attitude and the methodology. I was looking for a scientific approach to human behavior, but I never dreamed that this could yield a value–free understanding' (Seligman & Csikszentmihalyi, 2000, p. 7). Far from 'yielding a value–free understanding,' positive psychology has unwittingly tied itself to a neo–liberal economic and political discourse, as can be seen from Seligman and Csikszentmihalyi (2000) and Peterson and Seligman's (2004) prescriptions, which are underpinned by a philosophy based on responsibility, moderation, and work ethic, all essential values for the effective operation of a neo–liberal economy" (McDonald & O'Callaghan, 2008, 138).

"The addition of a fourth life [form of happiness] should underscore that we are trying to describe, not prescribe, what people actually do to achieve well being (see below). Adding the fourth life in no way endorses this life nor do we suggest that you should divert your own path to well being to win more. Rather we include it to describe human approach behavior more comprehensively" (Jayawickreme, Pawelski, & Seligman, 2009, p. 14).

"Descriptive and Not Prescriptive. AH theory does not tell people what they ought to do. Its subject matter is indeed what is prescribed—across cultures and even universally in some cases—but its role is merely to describe accurately what is prescribed using rigorous classification, valid and reliable assessment, and the discovery of interventions that build what is prescribed in any given culture or across cultures" (Jayawickreme, Pawelski, & Seligman, 2009, p. 15).

"Yet Diener is also one of the most vocal advocates for using positive psychology to influence policy. The research should be used to create "good societies," he told the crowd at the IPPA meeting, to teach people what will truly make them happy and to help create the circumstances that will promote that authentic happiness" (See Ruark, 2009).

Despite Seligman's protests that he is value neutral here's what they say in reference to positive education: "We present the story of teaching these skills to an entire school—Geelong Grammar School—in Australia, and we speculate that positive education will form the basis of a 'new prosperity', a politics that values both wealth and well–being" (Seligman, Ernst, Gillham, Reivich, & Linkins, 2009, p. 293). . . . "Prosperity–as–usual has been equated with wealth. The time has come for a new prosperity, a prosperity that combines well–being with wealth. Learning to value and to attain this new prosperity must start early—in the formative years of schooling—and it is this new prosperity, kindled by Positive Education, that the world can now choose" (Seligman, Ernst, Gillham, Reivich, & Linkins, 2009, p. 308).

There seems to be little pretension of value neutrality here: "Public policy can be aimed at increasing general well–being and the successes or failures of policy can be measured quantitatively against this standard" (Seligman, Ernst, Gillham, Reivich, & Linkins, 2009, p. 308).

"Positive psychology cannot tell people what to value, but it can certainly shed light on the 'what' and the 'why' of whatever is valued. The resulting knowledge can and should inform how people might live" (Peterson, 2009, p. 4).

"Western cultures emphasize self–enhancement: Being able to achieve and to celebrate one's success is a major source of Westerners' self–esteem. Conversely, Eastern cultures emphasize fitting in and fulfilling obligations: Being able to critically reflect on and learn from one's past failures and to minimize future failures is a defining characteristic of a well–adjusted Easterner (Heine, Lehman, Markus & Kitayama, 1999; Heine et al., 2001)" (Wirtz, Chiu, Diener, & Oishi, 2009, p. 1169).

"The original idea behind the virtue (or Values–In–Action: VIA) project was to create a "manual of sanities," a guide to optimal development modeled on the established DSM and ICD manuals of human disorders. The end result was a detailed classificatory system of six core moral virtues (wisdom/knowledge, courage, humanity, justice, temperance, and transcendence) as well as 24 subordinate empirically measurable character strengths through which the virtues manifest themselves (Peterson & Seligman, chaps 2–3)" (Kristjansson, 2010, p. 305).

"In terms of flow, a good life is one that involves complete absorption in what one does" (Slade, 2010, p. 2).

"The dominant narrative about the beginnings of positive psychology has now been repeated in a great many texts since its first appearance in a special issue of the American Psychologist in 2000 (Seligman & Csikszentmihalyi, 2000). This narrative glosses over the recent history of psychology, and tells a decidedly U.S.–centric version of world history. In doing so it positions the emergence of positive psychology into the world at the turn of the millennium as largely inevitable, and of course, highly necessary. American positive psychology addresses itself, in particular, to a specific characterization of this historical moment, in which positive psychology is a dire necessity. Thus, for all who herald its arrival, positive psychology is a field whose 'time has come.'" (Yen, 2010, p. 71).

"The implications [of this rhetoric] are clear— due to its advanced position relative to the rest of the world, America can, and indeed has a moral obligation to offer the "light" of science and civilization "to the world," and positive psychology is just such a science of high civilization" (Yen, 2010, p. 71).

Yen (2010) explains that the rationale for positive psychology began as a necessity to address the affluence and surplus in the United States. However, after September 11, the rationale changed and exploited a different view of America. In this post–9/11 view, positive psychology is equated with American security and Peterson & Park (2006, p. 359) is given in support: "any deliberate steps . . . to increase the experience of positive emotions . . . may be precisely what we need to create the conditions for national security."

Different characterizations of America are evoked depending upon how positive psychology is to be rationalized: "psychologists should be studying the "highest qualities" in life and peak experiences in times of plenty (Seligman & Csikszentmihalyi, 2000); promoting resilience and positive emotion in times of adversity (Peterson & Park, 2006); and identifying good character strengths in times of moral destitution (Peterson & Seligman, 2004)" (Yen, 2010, p. 72).

"By its own definition, positive psychology is an objective, value–neutral science, and its proponents insist that all they are doing is describing what makes people happy rather than prescribing what people should be doing" (Yen, 2010, p. 74).

"Character strengths are the subset of personality traits that are morally valued. Like other personality traits, character strengths are dispositions that are manifest in people's thoughts, emotions, and behaviors (Park & Peterson, 2005, 2008; Peterson & Seligman, 2004)" (Gillham, Adams–Deutsch, Werner, Reivich, Coulter–Heindl, Linkins, et al., 2011, p. 31). [Seligman is the last author].

I'm glad we have finally gotten this straightened out: "Achieving happiness is one of the major goals, if not the ultimate goal of human beings (Larsen & Eid, 2008)" (Giannopoulos & Vella–Brodrick, 2011, p. 95).

"Some of us seem to be thinking that our subject matter itself (people) is generally positive or admirable. This brings us to a second possible understanding of the 'positive' within positive psychology: that the scientist's subject matter is inherently good, desirable, or valuable (relative to an opposing perspective, that the subject matter might be inherently bad, undesirable, or not valuable)" . . . "It seems to me that this is where positive psychology is most vulnerable to going wrong, as the belief that humans are more good than bad could be a self-serving illusion or an ideological bias that clouds or completely blocks our view of half of human nature (i.e., the not-so-good part)" (Sheldon, 2011, p. 422).

"Even military psychologists studying brainwashing or prisoner intimidation techniques could be viewed as positive psychologists, if one accepts their claim that this knowledge is essential for protecting America's security. This is of course a debatable proposition, and here it may simply become a question of values and interpretations. (Which are correct and worthy?) The main point is that we are (nearly) all proceeding in good faith, doing what we think is right" (Sheldon, 2011, p. 423). [comment: let's hope that they are proceeding in good faith!]



7). Financial aspects/positive psychology as big business

Comment: very early on, Seligman was explicit about using positive psychology to try to rejuvenate the viability of the practice of psychology. "Can an economically viable profession of Positive psychology emerge outside the health care system?" (Seligman, 1998c).

"He [Seligman] raised millions of dollars of research money and funded 50 research groups involving 150 scientists across the world. Four positive psychology centres opened, decorated in cheerful colours and furnished with sofas and baby–sitters. There were get–togethers on Mexican beaches where psychologists would snorkel and eat fajitas, then form "pods" to discuss subjects such as wonder and awe. A thousand therapists were coached in the new science" (Wade, 2005).

"Seligman speculates that doing more exercises for longer would bring greater benefits. Hundreds of thousands of people have registered with his website www.reflectivehappiness.com — where, for $10 a month, they are given a happiness programme including instruction in a package of positive exercises" (Wade, 2005). From the website: "his website has almost 1,975,000 users from around the world, and you are welcome to use all of the resources available here for free." http://www.authentichappiness.sas.upenn.edu/Default.aspx

"Many believe that the field of psychotherapy can survive only if it reinvents itself . . . Positive psychotherapy (aka applied positive practice) is another invention that addresses the threat of professional extinction" (Becker & Marecek, 2008, p. 599).

"By problematizing new aspects of human 'being,' it stakes out new territory for psychology. Mapping the territory of virtue, 'flow,' flourishing, and happiness is said to demand expertise that only psychological researchers can offer. At the same time, attaining happiness, individual strength, and good character is purported to require the application of therapeutic and other technologies that only highly trained professionals can deliver" (Becker & Marecek, 2008, p. 601).

"The figures are impressive. The National Institute of Mental Health has given more than $226–million in grants to positive–psychology researchers in the past 10 years, beginning with just under $4–million in 1999 and reaching more than nine times that amount in 2008. The John Templeton Foundation has long supported the work, and recently awarded Seligman a grant of nearly $6–million to encourage collaborations between positive psychologists and neuroscientists. Backing has also come from the National Science Foundation, the U.S. Department of Education, and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, among others" (Ruark, 2009).

"Taken together, these historical narratives help to stake out a new domain within an already crowded psychological market, but one in which human flourishing, as an object of psychological knowledge, becomes amenable to study only by highly trained psychological scientists or experts (Becker & Marecek, 2008). In the face of a resurgent biologized psychiatry that has threatened the legitimacy of psychology, this represents a vast new arena of opportunity for intervention by psychological professionals" (Yen, 2010, p. 74).

"one of the motives that prompted Marty Seligman to change psychology from deficit-orientation to strength-orientation was that he believed psychologists could contribute much more than what they were doing at the time. 'There is so much work for psychologists to do,' he kept saying, 'and so few jobs for psychologists.' I thought this was a perceptive observation, one that added an important reason to push for change.
So, 10 years later, Seligman's wish (and mine) has been in part realized. Hundreds of new life coaches are spreading the good news of positive psychology far and wide, and presumably making a living at it. The problem is that when a person charges for a specific service, he or she cannot be as critical of it, lest the clients begin to suspect that the goods provided are not as advertised. So life coaches need theories of happiness, and interventions that produce them, that are beyond change and improvement. Whether they can resist this pressure or not remains to be seen" (Csikszentmihalyi & Nakamura, 2011, p. 4).



8). The role of research

Maslow felt that the study of psychology should be based upon philosophy, and especially, the study of ethics and values. "Unless psychologists acquaint themselves with the heights of philosophical thought, they tend to remain arrogant rather than humble, trivial rather than profound, repetitious rather than creative" (Maslow, 1965a, p. 22). The approach to the study of psychology should include aspects of "the highest and deepest experiences of which human being is capable–what I call the peak experiences" (Maslow, 1965a, p. 22). Maslow bemoaned the fact that psychologists turned to the physical sciences for their philosophy, thus creating a shallow and fragmented research agenda.

"American psychology is particularly behavioristic, concentrating on overt actions. This originates in a praiseworthy, though naive, effort to be 'scientific.' Of course it is the hope and goal of scientists to demonstrate, to prove, and to repeat the experiment in another laboratory. Yet we must face the hard fact that this is an ultimate rather than an immediate goal. By confining ourselves to the observation of external behavior, we overlook all sorts of human activities which do not show themselves externally in a simple form" Behaviorism originated in a sensible reaction against anthropomorphizing animal psychology, but the pendulum has swung too far, and instead it has rodentomorphized human psychology, studying the person as if he were just a complicated white rat. It is indeed a mistake to attribute human motives to laboratory animals, but is it a mistake to attribute human motives to humans?" (Maslow, 1965a, p. 30).

Subjective Happiness Scale developed by Lyubomirsky and Lepper (1999).

"And in this quest for what is best, positive psychology does not rely on wishful thinking, self–deception, or hand waving; instead, it tries to adapt what is best in the scientific method to the unique problems that human behavior presents in all its complexity" (Seligman, 2002, p. 4).

Happiness formula. "Although much of the research that underlies this book is based in statistics, a user–friendly book in psychology for the educated layperson can have at most one equation. Here, then, is the only equation I ask you to consider:

H = S + C + V

where H is your enduring level of happiness, S is your set range, C is the circumstances of your life, and V represents factors under your voluntary control" (Seligman, 2002a, p. 45)

"By modeling its methods on those of negative psychology, positive psychology is already producing a plethora of redundant theories of human strengths and virtues" (Tennen & Affleck, 2003, p. 167).

"In its short history, positive psychology has already inherited negative psychology's worst methodological habits. Its enthusiastic reliance on nomothetic study designs and its frenetic generation of redundant findings leave us skeptical about a new positive psychology that hopes, based on its empirical methods, to distinguish itself from long-defunct positive psychologies" (Tennen & Affleck, 2003, p. 167).

"One of the most distinguishing features of positive psychology is an insistence that research must follow the standards of traditional scientific investigations" (Compton, 2005, p. 12).

"One of the most important ideas in positive psychology is what Lyubomirsky, Sheldon, Schkade, and Seligman call the "happiness formula:" H=S+C+V The level of happiness that you actually experience (H) is determined by your biological set point (S) plus the conditions of your life (C) plus the voluntary activities (V) you do. (Haidt, 2006, p. 94).

"It needs to be acknowledged that there is a general difference in research style, namely humanistic psychology's penchant for mostly qualitative work (Fischer, 2006a) as opposed to positive psychology's penchant for mostly quantitative research (Ong & Dulmen, 2007), which is more implicitly obvious rather than explicitly stated in the positive psychology literature" (Friedman, 2008, p. 120).

Csikszentmihalyi (2000b) contends that the utilization of empirical methodologies not only distinguishes positive psychology from previous examinations of human flourishing (e.g., the humanist movement of the 1960s), but also renders it superior to all other attempts to determine the sources of optimal human functioning, as history and philosophy are 'too subjective ... dependent on faith or ... dubious assumptions; they [history and philosophy] lacked the clear–eyed skepticism and the slow cumulative growth that I [Csikszentmihályi] associated with science' (p. 7). (Christopher & Hickinbottom, 2008, p. 564).

"Positive psychology asserts to being a unique approach that differentiates itself from its main predecessor, humanistic psychology, by embracing quantitative empirical research that humanistic psychology supposedly eschews." (Friedman, 2009).

"our findings suggest that a longer and more thorough battery of items [as opposed to short–form or aggregate measures] may be necessary in order to accurately model the complex latent structure of well–being" (Gallagher, Lopez, & Preacher, 2009, p. 1043).

Seligman has presented 10 things he says "science" has demonstrated about positive psychology that "we did not know before": Retrieved July 18, 2011 from


For a similar list, see (Seligman, Ernst, Gillham, Reivich, & Linkins, 2009).

"positive psychologists want to preserve the austere assumption that science (including psychological science) "must be descriptive and not prescriptive" (Seligman, 2002, p. 129): in particular, "descriptive of what is ubiquitous" rather than normative (Peterson & Seligman, 2004, p. 51)" (Kristjansson, 2010, p. 308).

"At one extreme, Martin Seligman calls for experimental studies with randomized assignment and controls for the placebo effect. He also advocates longitudinal experimental design; in fact, one distinction that he makes between humanistic and positive psychology is the lack of rigor and experimental research undergirding humanistic psychology. . . His colleague, Christopher Peterson, has a much more relaxed and inclusive view of the scientific method" (Hoy & Tarter, 2011, p. 431). Comment: it would be interesting to see how Seligman justifies his extensive use of questionnaires and surveys that are done over the web.



9). Positive versus negative psychology

"We have come to see that statistical notions of 'normality' are no real help in giving psychological meaning to mental health and illness: they beg the question or fail to come to grips with it. We have become suspicious of the once regnant concept of adjustment, as it has fallen into disrepute at the hands of social critics and moralists (e.g., Riesman, 1950) who see it as a pseudoscientific rationalization for conformist values, and of psychological theorists (e.g., White, 1959) who are challenging the sufficiency of the equilibrium model in which it is rooted. And from many quarters we encounter the call for a more positive view of mental health than is involved in the mere absence of manifest mental disorder. Since the appearance of Jahoda's useful book (1958) that reviewed the considerable array of proposals toward such a conception of optimal human functioning, the flow of suggestions has not abated" (Smith, 1961, p. 299).

"The various lists of criteria that have been proposed for positive mental health reshuffle overlapping conceptions of desirable functioning without attaining agreement—or giving much promise that agreement can be reached" (Smith, 1961, p. 299).

"Psychology ought to become more positive and less negative. It should have higher ceilings, and not be afraid of the loftier possibilities of the human being" (Maslow, 1965a, p. 27).

"Myers reports that for every article on positive emotions (joy, happiness or life satisfaction) there are 21 articles on negative emotions (anger, anxiety and depression) (Myers, 1999)" (Gillham & Seligman, 1999, p. s163).

"psychology's preoccupation with identifying, undoing and preventing damage has blinded us to human strength. Our theories are powerful in predicting failure, hopelessness and despair, but are impotent when it comes to explaining hope, persistence, creativity, compassion, love and the many other qualities that make life worthwhile. Worse, psychology's focus on protection from damage is harmful. It has contributed to a culture of victimology and may be responsible for the widespread epidemic of depression in our young people." (Gillham & Seligman, 1999, p. s163).

"As a society, our concern with damage has turned into a preoccupation with protecting our children. We cringe when we imagine our children failing and becoming immersed in self–doubt and hopelessness. The desire to protect is, in part, the basis for the self–esteem movement that emerged in California in the 1960s. This movement's primary goal is to bolster children's feelings of self– worth and insulate them from experiences that might shatter their self–confidence" (Gillham & Seligman, 1999, p. s166).

"The [self–esteem] movement has a harmful edge. First, it ignores the value of negative emotions. Emotions like anger, sadness, fear and shame help us make sense of our experiences in the world. Low self–esteem also can work in this way. When we feel badly, it is a sign that we are doing badly in the world. We are not accomplishing what we would like to at work, at school, with friends or in romantic relationships. This is a signal that change is in order. Genuine self–esteem is gained through success in the world. Happiness or self–confidence that is achieved simply through dulling or avoiding painful emotions is not grounded in reality" (Gillham & Seligman, 1999, p. s166).

"The second problem is that the self–esteem movement produces a self–confidence that is fragile. It has no substantive foundation" (Gillham & Seligman, 1999, p. s167).

"Third, a focus on buffering self–esteem may prevent individuals from engaging in experiences that can lead to true happiness or joy. The most satisfying moments in our lives are often times when we achieved something (success, affection) after struggling and working for it for some time" (Gillham & Seligman, 1999, p. s167).

"Two dangerous assumptions underlie our culture of victimology: (1) trauma always leads to serious damage and (2) damage always reflects the presence of trauma. These assumptions lead us to excuse heinous crimes as natural responses to misfortune. They led many well–meaning therapists in the late '80s and early '90s to attribute client's problems to early abuse and to search for repressed memories of that abuse when none were spontaneously reported" (Gillham & Seligman, 1999, p. s168).

"There is evidence that our society's concern with protection from damage has backfired. We now have an epidemic of depression in our young people, young people living in the most privileged time and place in human history. The incidence of depression has risen dramatically over this century" (Gillham & Seligman, 1999, p. s168).

"We have argued that psychology as a field has been preoccupied with the negative side of life and has left us with a view of human qualities that is warped and one–sided. Psychology is literally 'half–baked'. We need to bake the other half now" (Gillham & Seligman, 1999, p. s172).

"the road to positive psychology should pass through the fields of psychopathology, psychotherapy, and mental health. Positive psychology research should not be limited to healthy populations but should also include clinical samples" (Lampropoulos, 2001, p. 88).

"It is argued in this article that ironically, a better understanding of the depth and breadth of a new field called the 'psychology of loss' will provide this new field of positive psychology with some of its greatest lessons" (Harvey, 2001, p. 838).

"Psychology after World War II became a science largely devoted to healing. It concentrated on repairing damage using a disease model of human functioning. This almost exclusive attention to pathology neglected the idea of a fulfilled individual and a thriving community, and it neglected the possibility that building strength is the most potent weapon in the arsenal of therapy. The aim of positive psychology is to catalyze a change in psychology from a preoccupation only with repairing the worst things in life to also building the best qualities in life. To redress the previous imbalance, we must bring the building of strength to the forefront in the treatment and prevention of mental illness" (Seligman, 2002, p. 3).

"The message of the positive psychology movement is to remind our field that it has been deformed. Psychology is not just the study of disease, weakness, and damage; it also is the study of strength and virtue. Treatment is not just fixing what is wrong; it also is building what is right. Psychology is not just about illness or health; it also is about work, education, insight, love, growth, and play" (Seligman, 2002b, p. 3).

"Working exclusively on personal weakness and on damaged brains, and deifying the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (DSM), in contrast, has rendered science poorly equipped to do effective prevention" (Seligman, 2002, p. 5).

Comment on above: as McDonald and O'Callaghan (2008, p. 136) have noted, much of the criticism of the DSM has to do with the appropriateness of applying a classification and categorization system to mental conditions and these same concerns and criticisms would also apply to the presentation of strengths and virtues presented by Peterson and Seligman (2004).

These important comments also support Dąbrowski's view: "There is much ferment in the subfield of personality about just how much change is possible in an adult. This became evident in a recent debate in Psychological Inquiry between Lewis (2001) and Caspi and Roberts (2001). Lewis argued that there is very little stability over time, and Caspi and Roberts took the position, which makes good sense to me, that once adulthood is reached there is considerable stability but one must still allow for modest change. A major issue to be emphasized, then, has to do with the conditions that favor change. For the stable adult, major personality change may require a trauma, a personal crisis, or a religious conversion. Abandoning unserviceable goals and counterproductive ways of coping with life in favor of more effective ways of coping is very difficult without the mobilization that crisis can produce. Even experts cannot agree about the prospects for change on the basis of evidence that, unfortunately, is not clear even when it comes to the personality changes sought in psychotherapy (VandenBos, 1996)" (Lazarus, 2003, p. 105).

"We do not view positive psychology as a replacement for psychology as usual, or as a "paradigm shift"; rather we view positive psychology merely as a normal science supplement to the hard–won gains of "negative" psychology" (Seligman & Pawelski, 2003, p. 162)

"Is this movement in science [positive psychology] worth the investment of time, energy, and research effort? I believe that it is, because I believe that psychology should be about more than repairing what is wrong. It should also be about identifying and nurturing what is good" (Seligman, 2003, p. xi).

"Psychology has, for the past 50 years, been almost entirely about remediation, about repairing the worst in life. It has turned its back on the goals of understanding what makes people happy, what builds positive character, and what makes life worth living. When psychology ignores these goals, it can languish just as the social sciences and many individuals are languishing" (Seligman, 2003, p. xiii).

"The message of positive psychology is to remind our field that it has been half–baked. We have made real progress on the study of mental illness and the repair of damage. But we have made little progress in so many other areas. Psychology is not just the study of disease, weakness, and damage. It is also the study of happiness, strength, and virtue" (Seligman, 2003, p. xiv).

"But because psychology has been a profession and a science focused on what was wrong and what was weak, we know almost nothing about the strengths and virtues. So if we want to succeed in prevention, we need a science to illuminate strengths and virtues" (Seligman, 2003, p. xvi).

"By asserting that human strengths and weaknesses are qualitatively distinct, positive psychology has rediscovered the worldview of the 19th century cloaked as 21st century perspicacity. This qualitative distinction between strengths and weaknesses is not only regressive but genuinely surprising, because many investigators now identified with positive psychology have justified their use of convenience samples such as college students to study psychopathological processes such as depression by invoking the notion that psychopathology and mental health represent a continuum (Tennen, Eberhardt, & Affleck, 1999)" (Tennen & Affleck, 2003, pp. 165-166).

"If positive psychology's path is going to be, as its proponents assert, independent of current work in the study of negative experiences, we cannot imagine how this emergent field will tackle complex human strengths such as the ability to experience emotional ambivalence and endure negative emotions when necessary, and how it will study virtues such as the capacity to make amends" (Tennen & Affleck, 2003, p. 167).

Harvey and Pauwels (2004) noted that modesty and humility were two character strengths not related to life satisfaction implying that the individuals in the study display elevated self–esteem and consider themselves special. "We would posit that humility and modesty are human qualities very likely derived from the experience of loss and coping with this experience. The authors [Park, Peterson, & Seligman, 2004] note the possible special qualities of the Website sampled in their research. We might wonder whether a Web site such as that for "Compassionate Friends" (parents who have lost children) might yield similar evidence?" (Harvey & Pauwels, 2004, p. 621).

"However, positive psychology does not imply that the rest of psychology is negative, although it is understandable that the name may imply that to some people. In fact, the large majority of the gross academic product of psychology is neutral, focusing on neither wellbeing nor distress. Positive psychology grew largely from the recognition of an imbalance in clinical psychology, in which most research does indeed focus on mental illness" (Gable & Haidt, 2005, p. 104).

Comment on the above: Gable and Haidt (2005, p. 104) appear to present a logical contradiction when they state that "We would like to invite you to consider getting involved too, because if all goes well, positive psychology may not be around for much longer. If the positive psychology movement is successful in rebalancing psychology and expanding its gross academic product, it will become obsolete." The implication here is clearly that psychology requires rebalancing by the positive psychology movement and that if it is successful in this rebalancing, psychology will be restored and the positive psychology movement will become obsolete. However, the authors go on to suggest that "positive psychology does not imply that the rest of psychology is negative" (Gable & Haidt, 2005, p. 104) and they further state that this interpretation "is unfortunate and, more important, untrue, as we hope what we have written here already demonstrates" (Gable & Haidt, 2005, p. 107). If it's untrue that psychology is negative, then what is wrong with psychology that it needs rebalancing?

Comment: It seems disappointingly arbitrary and reductionistic that Seligman has framed positive psychology as a corrective to what he has perceived as psychology's historical focus on the negative (Held, 2005). This "either or" dichotomy leaves little room for individual differences or subtlety in diagnosis. Does negative have to be negative for everyone and positive be positive for everyone? This dichotomizing also flies in the face the growing body of literature on posttraumatic growth; if, at least in some cases, growth can result from trauma, then the dichotomy of positive and negative psychology becomes largely meaningless.

Comment: Seligman makes this extremely positive [perhaps even unrealistic] appraisal of the progress that "negative psychology" has made, almost to imply that this progress is sufficient and now we can move on to study something else. I also note that this is self–referential: "At least 14 disorders, previously intractable, have yielded their secrets to science and can now be either cured or considerably relieved (Seligman, 1994)" (Seligman & Csikszentmihalyi, 2000, p. 6).

Here is a slightly different version of the above: "In 1946, there were no effective treatments for any of the psychological disorders, whereas now we can cure two and treat another 12 via psychotherapy and/or pharmacology (Seligman 1993)" (Seligman, Parks, & Steen, 2004, p. 1379).

"Positive psychologists trace the "misanthropic bias" (Csikszentmihalyi, 2003, p. 129) in contemporary psychology to the unhappy marriage of psychology with psychiatry that took place in the wake of the traumas of World War II." (Kristjansson, 2010, p. 297).

"To emphasize positive psychology does not imply that the rest of psychology is negative. We do not deny sick, unpleasant, or negative aspects of life. Rather, we seek to shift attention from the negative to the positive" (Hoy & Tarter, 2011, p. 428).

"It is time to correct the imbalance between considering only negative behavior of individuals and institutions and consider the human potential needed for well–being, satisfaction, and meaningful aspects of work and life. The most basic assumption of positive psychology is that human goodness and excellence are as authentic and common as are disease, disorder, and distress" (Hoy & Tarter, 2011, p. 428).

"Psychological traits and processes are not inherently positive or negative; instead, whether psychological characteristics promote or undermine well–being depends on the context in which they operate. If true, this principle indicates a need to think beyond positive psychology" (McNulty & Fincham, 2011, p. 1).

"For many positive psychology researchers, there is often a one-sided focus on desirable-sounding constructs and topics, with new, exotic terms like self-compassion or state cheerfulness proliferating. Surely "negative" human experiences and characteristics, such as regret or perfectionism, are not just bad things to be avoided and minimized—they may also be essential challenges, springboards to higher peaks. Just as the possible benefits of the bad often seem neglected, the limits of the good are rarely considered. Too much curiosity could lead to obsessions and nosiness; too little guilt could lead to antisocial behavior and a failure to learn from mistakes; and too much purpose in life could lead to monomaniacal obsession. To date, positive psychology researchers have had little to say about the yin and yang of positive and negative, the dialectical tension between stress and growth" (Kashdan & Steger, 2011, pp. 9-10).

"An unfortunate implication of the term 'positive psychology' is that it suggests that some areas or eras of psychology may be 'negative' psychology. This can lead to an unfortunate dynamic: nobody wants to think they are a negative psychologist, so they must either join the bandwagon ('I too am a positive psychologist!') or deny it ('Positive psychology is wrong and harmful!'). My position is that all fields of psychology are positive sciences to the extent that the derived knowledge can be used to solve problems and to improve what is in need of improvement" (Sheldon, 2011, p. 423).



10). Positive psychology and definitions of mental health

The association of happiness with the definition of mental health has a long history. For example, in 1941, Cantor made this observation: "If we examine the many popular definitions of a normal mind, i.e., the attempt to classify mental traits common to most people, we find that they fall into two principal groups: those using happiness as a standard, and those depending upon the criterion of adjustment to reality" (p. 676).

Traditionally, mental health has been defined as the absence of symptomatology. Jahoda presented a major work in 1958 outlining a positive approach to the definition of mental health. "It would seem, consequently, to be more fruitful to tackle the concept of mental health in its more positive connotation, noting, however, that the absence of disease may constitute a necessary, but not a sufficient, criterion for mental health" (Jahoda, 1958, pp. 14-15). This is the context that Dąbrowski falls into. Dąbrowski's concern was that definitions of optimal development that simply referred to the absence of illness were insufficient to capture the range and breadth of features that seem to qualify human authenticity and exemplary development. Dąbrowski explicitly endorsed and used Jahoda's criteria in endorsing a positive approach to mental health.

The World Health Organization has adopted a positive definition of mental health.

"Mental health is an integral and essential component of health. The WHO constitution states: 'Health is a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.' An important consequence of this definition is that mental health is described as more than the absence of mental disorders or disabilities.

Mental health is a state of well-being in which an individual realizes his or her own abilities, can cope with the normal stresses of life, can work productively and is able to make a contribution to his or her community. In this positive sense, mental health is the foundation for individual well-being and the effective functioning of a community" (World Health Organization, 2010, paras. 1-2).



11). Positive psychology in relation to happiness

"Man is fond of counting his troubles but he does not count his joys. If he counted them up as he ought to, he would see that every lot has enough happiness provided for it." Fyodor Dostoyevsky

Historical overview:

There have been two rival views of happiness for many centuries: one is the eudaimonic, the other is the hedonic.

The eudaimonic[YOU–dee–mon–ick] claims that a human being's primary purpose in life is to be good and that being good is either its own reward or leads to happiness (Socrates, Plato, Aristotle, Cicero, Seneca, and Boethius). If we concentrate on being good, we will be happy and flourish – well–being is the outcome of positive goal pursuits.

Eudaimonia: [YOU–dee–moan–ee–ah] a contented state of being happy and healthy and prosperous.

Eudaimonic models:

Hedonic [HEE–don–ic] well–being: the pleasant life; of, relating to, or marked by pleasure. Claims that our primary purpose is to enjoy pleasures of various kinds (physical and mental) and avoid pain, suffering, anxiety, and discomfort. Concentrating on being good is no fun, and happiness lies in pleasures and having fun while avoiding pain and boredom. See Synnestvedt (2006, p. 287).

Hedonic models:

[Phronesis—practical wisdom or prudence]

For reviews of more recent literature on happiness, see Diener, Suh and Lucas (1999) and for reviews of older literature on happiness research, see Wilson (1967).

Research asking people how happy they are has a long history, I will only highlight a couple of representative early examples.

"Do you consider your life on the whole (a) happy, satisfactory, successful; (b) unhappy, unsatisfactory, unsuccessful? In each case why?" These questions seem contemporary, as if they could have been taken from any one of today's modern studies. In fact, this is from Davis (1929, p. 89).

"In this study, the individual is called happy if he believes himself happier than most others of like age and sex, if he believes his prevailing moods cheerful, his spirits high, his satisfactions lasting, his days full of interesting and amusing things, his prevalent attitudes described by such words as 'enthusiastic,' 'jolly,' 'tranquil,' 'joyful,' 'fortunate,' or 'well-integrated.' If he reports splendid satisfaction with his health, his work, his love adjustment, his friends, hobbies, and religion, these likewise contribute to his 'happiness' score" (Watson, 1930, 79).

"We have selected as the theme of our study that aspect of the successful marriage which may be designated as marital happiness, and we wish to ascertain, if possible, what psychological factors are demonstrably associated with this state" (Terman, 1938, p. 2).

"Between 1946 and 1977 nearly fifty surveys have asked national samples to evaluate how happy they are. Only one of the more refined measures reaches back before the I960's (Cantril's self-anchoring striving scales start in 1959) and most have been developed only in the last half-dozen years" (Smith, 1979, p. 18).

"To summarize, it appears that happiness rose between the late forties and the late fifties. During the sixties there appears to have been a decline in happiness, although at a slower rate than the rise in the fifties. This drop reached its bottom by the early seventies. The trend since then is hard to separate from the variation, but it appears that happiness has shown no clear trend" (Smith, 1979, p. 29).

"We know, for example, that national surveys (Campbell, Converse, & Rodgers, in press) show that during the period between 1957 and 1972, when most of the economic and social indicators were moving rapidly upward, the proportion of the population of this country who described themselves as 'very happy' declined steadily, and this decline was most apparent among the part of the population that was most affluent. A recent study (Schneider, 1975) has shown that in a comparison of 13 American cities, the correlation between the objective characteristics of the cities and a measure of life satisfaction reported from surveys of the residents of each city was essentially zero" (Campbell, 1976, p. 118).

 Three approaches: During the early 1960s Hadley Cantril used his self anchoring scale extensively. He used an approach that "conceptualized well-being as a cognitive experience in which the individual compared his perception of his present situation to a situation which he aspired to, expected, or felt he deserved. The discrepancy between his perceived life and his aspired-to life is expressed in a measure of satisfaction-dissatisfaction, and greater satisfaction is taken as an indicator of a sense of well-being" (Campbell, 1976, p. 119). Campbell (1976) also notes there have been hundreds of studies looking at the cognitive measures of satisfaction with work and marriage.
The second approach or large-scale studies based upon affective aspects of experience, including Bradburn's affect balance scale. Bradburn looked at positive and negative episodes occurring in respondents' lives.
Third, there have been studies based upon psychiatric indices.

"The attraction of the concept of happiness is certainly great, coming as it does from the early Greek identification of happiness with the good life and having as it does almost universal currency as a recognized, if not uniquely important, component of the quality of life experience. It is one of those indispensable psychological concepts, like intelligence, morale, prejudice, mental health, and others, that have meaning to almost everyone but are difficult to define" (Campbell, 1976, p. 119).

"Reported happiness is highest among young people and declines with age; general satisfaction is lowest among young people and increases with age" (Campbell, 1976, p. 120).

"It would appear that we have come to the point where we must stop using the word happiness indiscriminately to refer to any aspect of experience we regard as positive and begin to work seriously on the problem of identifying the major dimensions of the experience of well-being, developing instruments to measure them, analyzing their relationships to each other, and building time series that make possible the study of the nature of change" (Campbell, 1976, p. 120).

"typically, happiness is equated with a good life. It is difficult to argue against the importance of happiness to the good life. Aristotle argued that all goals were valued only to the extent that they related ultimately to happiness. All other goals are essentially sought in the service of the happiness they promise" (King & Pennebaker, 1998, p. 53).

"The greater power of bad events over good ones is found in everyday events, major life events (e.g., trauma), close relationship outcomes, social network patterns, interpersonal interactions, and learning processes. Bad emotions, bad parents, and bad feedback have more impact than good ones, and bad information is processed more thoroughly than good. The self is more motivated to avoid bad self–definitions than to pursue good ones" (Baumeister, Bratslavsky, Finkenauer, & Vohs, 2001 p. 323).

"positive psychology holds that the scientific understanding of subjective well–being—pleasure, contentment, joy, mirth, ecstasy, ebullience, and the like—is important. We believe, however, that positive psychology is not only the study of positive feeling but also the study of positive traits and positive institutions. Within the study of positive emotion itself we divide it into emotion about the past (satisfaction, contentment, pride, and the like); the present, which is commonly termed happiness by the layperson (pleasure, ecstasy, joy, and the like); and the future (hope, optimism, trust, faith, and the like). Seen this way, although happiness in the lay sense is one important subject of positive psychology, it forms only one third of the area of positive emotion, which in turn forms only one third of the domain of positive psychology" (Seligman & Pawelski, 2003, p. 160).

"Our thesis is that well-being should become a primary focus of policymakers, and that its rigorous measurement is a primary policy imperative.... [We] propose that well-being ought to be the ultimate goal around which economic, health, and social policies are built" (Diener and Seligman, 2004, pp. 1-2).

"Also referred to as 'the science of happiness,' positive psychology is striving to be rigorous and evidence based in its endeavor to identify interventions that promote mental health and quality of life" (Hershberger, 2005, p. 630).

"It is probably true to say that contemporary literature on wellbeing largely ignores the contributions of humanistic and existential thinkers like Maslow, Rogers, Jung and Allport73 It also doesn't pay much attention to the complexity of philosophical conceptions of happiness, even though philosophy has dealt with this subject since long before psychology even existed" (Boniwell, 2006, p. 39).

"It is important to be clear about what Aristotle meant by eudaimonia. This Greek word is often translated as "happiness," but it can more accurately be translated as well–being, flourishing, or living a good life. Aristotle's concept of happiness includes such matters as one's status in society, health, luck, and virtuous acts as well as positive feelings" (Synnestvedt, 2006, p. 286).

"A crucial task for any theory of well–being is to give a credible accounting of the value of pleasant and unpleasant experiences, especially suffering" (Haybron, 2007, p. 12).

"whether an individual is happy also depends on whether others in the individual's social network are happy. Happy people tend to be located in the centre of their local social networks and in large clusters of other happy people. The happiness of an individual is associated with the happiness of people up to three degrees removed in the social network. Happiness, in other words, is not merely a function of individual experience or individual choice but is also a property of groups of people" (Fowler, & Christakis, 2008, p. 7).

"factor analyses for the models of hedonic, eudaimonic, and social well–being supported the proposed factor structures for each of these models" (Gallagher, Lopez, & Preacher, 2009, p. 1042).

Diener's model (hedonic well–being consists of positive affect, negative affect, and life satisfaction) was supported, "it appears that negative affect is in fact a component of hedonic well–being and the larger structure of well–being. It would therefore appear that just as high negative affect and low positive affect are together indicative of mental illnesses such as Major Depressive Disorder (American Psychiatric Association, 2000), low negative affect and high positive affect may together be indicative of flourishing mental health" (Gallagher, Lopez, & Preacher, 2009, p. 1043).

"when the 14 components of well–being are assessed using reliable measures, they can be successfully integrated into a hierarchical structure of well–being that maintains the theoretical distinctions between the hedonic, eudaimonic, and social dimensions of well–being" (Gallagher, Lopez, & Preacher, 2009, p. 1043).


Hierarchical structure of well–being model containing three second–order factors (hedonic well–being, social well–being, eudaimonic well–being). PA=Positive Affect, NA=Negative Affect, LS=Life Satisfaction, Acc=Social Acceptance, Act=Social Actualization, Coh=Social Coherence, Con=Social Contribution, Int=Social Integration, Aut=Autonomy, EM=Environmental Mastery, PG=Personal Growth, PR=Positive Relations with Others, PL=Purpose in Life, SA=Self–Acceptance. (Gallagher, Lopez, & Preacher, 2009, p. 1035).

"The secret of happiness is the ability to find joy in another's joy, the desire to make other people happy. To experience true happiness, we need to learn to forget ourselves, because self-centeredness and happiness are mutually exclusive. We need instead to be generative; we need to care about others. Many of us have seen this phenomenon in action: when we bring sunshine into the lives of others, we get some rays in return. Even the littlest things can produce moments of happiness—a smile, a hug, and a heartfelt thank-you. These little gestures can turn into glorious feelings for both giver and recipient" (Kets de Vries, 2009, p. 132).

"eudaimonism. Although the noun is usually translated as happiness, it might more properly, if less efficiently, be translated as 'the feelings accompanying behavior consistent with one's true potential.' The daimon in eudaimonia—"spirit"—signifies that which strives to create direction and meaning in our lives" (Kets de Vries, 2009, p. 219).

"Positive education is defined as education for both traditional skills and for happiness" (Seligman, Ernst, Gillham, Reivich, & Linkins, 2009, p. 293).

"'Happiness' is too worn and too weary a term to be of much scientific use, and the discipline of Positive Psychology divides it into three very different realms, each of which is measurable and, most importantly, each of which is skill–based and can be taught (Seligman, 2002). The first is hedonic: positive emotion (joy, love, contentment, pleasure etc.). A life led around having as much of this good stuff as possible, is the 'Pleasant Life'. The second, much closer to what Thomas Jefferson and Aristotle sought, is the state of flow, and a life led around it is the 'Engaged Life'." . . . The third realm in the framework of Positive Psychology is the one with the best intellectual provenance, the Meaningful Life. . . . From a Positive Psychology perspective, meaning consists in knowing what your highest strengths are, and then using them to belong to and serve something you believe is larger than the self (Seligman, 2002)" (Seligman, Ernst, Gillham, Reivich, & Linkins, 2009, p. 296).

"Positive psychologists follow in the footsteps of most of their psychological colleagues in using the terms "happiness" and "well–being" interchangeably. Nevertheless, "happiness" seems to be the preferred label" (Kristjansson, 2010, p. 298).

Kristjansson describes the three major approaches to happiness in positive psychology, number one: "Hedonistic accounts consider happiness to be identifiable with pleasure as a raw, undifferentiated, subjective feeling. The happy life is the life of such maximized pleasures" Number two, life satisfaction accounts. These two approaches are often seen together and are considered subjective measurements simply asking an individual how he or she feels about him or herself and are open to issues like self–deception. The third approach, eudaimonistic accounts, beginning with Aristotle was that happiness must be measured objectively. "according to Aristotle, it is empirically true that the flourishing of human beings consists of the realization of intellectual and moral virtues and in the fulfillment of their other specifically human physical and mental capabilities." "Aristotle's eudaimonia is an explicitly moral notion, not conceptually, but empirically: it is, in fact, impossible to achieve eudaimonia without being morally good—without actualizing the moral virtues" positive psychology takes the position that happiness must be plural and combine these three approaches (the balanced view described by Haidt, 2006). (Kristjansson, 2010, p. 300).

"There is much to admire in the happiness theory of positive psychology. It rejects the overly quick equation of happiness with pleasure or life satisfaction and invokes a nuanced classificatory system of different pathways to happiness. Writ large, it happily does not try to make the complicated look simple. The presentation of the theory is beset with ambiguities, however, as its proponents distance their own personal views from the official doctrine" (Kristjansson, 2010, p. 304).

"Perhaps genuine happiness is not something you aim at, but is, as Frankl once noted, a byproduct of a life well lived – and a life well lived does not settle on the programmed or neatly calibrated" (Schneider, 2011, p. 35).

"While acknowledging the need to address the negatives, the dominant message of PP (e.g., Fredrickson, 2009; Lyubomirsky, 2008; Peterson, 2006a) still maintains that negatives will go away if people simply focus on enhancing the positives. However, too much emphasis on positive affect as the answer to all ills can be counterproductive because negative emotions, such as a guilt, regret, frustration, and anger, can all motivate us toward positive change. Future research needs to test the hypothesis that the development of character strengths and resilience may benefit from prior experience of having overcome negative conditions" (Wong, 2011, pp. 69–70).

"The current findings demonstrate that under certain circumstances, valuing happiness may be self–defeating. Leading people to value happiness more made them feel less happy. This effect was found in a positive emotional context, but not in a negative emotional context, because in positive contexts, expectations for happiness are high and it is difficult to attribute failure to be happy to one's circumstances. Therefore, in positive contexts, people are more likely to feel disappointed in their level of happiness and, ultimately, feel less happy" (Mauss, Tamir, Anderson, & Savino, 2011, p. 3).

In a book review of John F. Schumaker's In search of happiness: Understanding an endangered state of mind, Wong writes: "Schumaker has debunked the myth surrounding the growing happiness enterprise. His strongest critique is directed against the consumer culture which deals a double–whammy to human happiness. First, it creates false needs and discontent. Second, it destroys the conditions that are conducive to human happiness. Therefore, all the prescriptions by happiness gurus have little value, unless we are willing to transform our consumer culture and address the fundamental issues about the human existence. According to Schumaker, happiness has more to do with culture than genetics and behaviors. Just as fish need to live in water and birds need an open sky, human beings need to be in their right elements in order to be happy and healthy. Such a simple truth is often overlooked by positive psychologists" (Wong, n.d.).

"Positive childhood behaviour was associated with midlife well–being; specifically a low probability of lifetime emotional problems, satisfaction with work, a high frequency of contact with friends or family and engagement in social activities. Happy children in this cohort were no more likely to marry, but significantly more likely to divorce. These associations were independent of childhood social class, childhood cognition, educational attainment, midlife occupational social class and extraversion" (Richards & Huppert, 2011, p. 75).

"The results supported the hypothesis that well–being would increase for all intervention group participants, especially for those in the meaning, engagement, pleasure and combination groups. However, contrary to expectations, the no intervention control group also increased slightly in well–being" (Giannopoulos, & Vella–Brodrick, 2011, p. 102).

Self fulfilling prophecy: in explaining the above result, why the control group receiving no intervention increased their happiness, the authors gave the following explanation. "It is possible that being involved in a study about 'happiness' may have alerted participants to the topic and raised expectations that their happiness levels will improve, at least for the daily events group. In the case of the control group, although no actual intervention was involved, the process of answering questions relating to happiness may have been enough to encourage thoughts about 'what makes them happy' and subsequently raise their well–being levels. It is also worth noting that the sample included individuals who were interested in becoming 'happier', and hence were self–motivated to engage in activities to increase their happiness levels, even if they were not assigned to a specific intervention, as was the case for the control group" (Giannopoulos, & Vella–Brodrick, 2011, p. 103).

"In sum, this study's findings provide evidence, via a randomised controlled trial using participants from the general population, that positive interventions enable people to deliberately increase their SWB" (Giannopoulos, & Vella–Brodrick, 2011, p. 104).

"This article provides the first review of emerging research in affective, clinical, and social science examining the potential maladaptive aspects of happiness" (Gruber, Mauss, & Tamir, 2011, pp. 222-223).

"It is possible to have too much happiness, to experience happiness in the wrong time, to pursue happiness in the wrong ways, and to experience the wrong types of happiness. In such cases, happiness may not be adaptive and might even lead to harmful consequences" (Gruber, Mauss, & Tamir, 2011, p. 229).

"Most scientists and laypeople agree that happiness is primarily a cognitive valuation that one's life is satisfying and includes the presence of frequent positive and infrequent negative emotions (Diener, Suh, Lucas, & Smith, 1999). Essentially, it is a simple barometer that life is moving in a desired direction. The problem with happiness arises when people ascribe it to be the primary objective of their life (which reflects the vast majority of people; Oishi, Diener, & Lucas, 2007)" (Kashdan & Steger, 2011, p. 10).

"Mirroring the general public, positive psychology researchers far too often rely on the pursuit of happiness as the ultimate criterion. An alternative perspective has been gaining steam, however, marked by an influx of attention to mindfulness, acceptance, and values, but this work often occurs in isolation from people interested in positive psychology (Brown, Ryan, & Creswell, 2007; Leary, Adams, & Tate, 2006; Wilson & Murrell, 2004). Because of this separation, complex issues such as how happiness goals might be diametrically opposed to mindfulness are often ignored. Again, it is useful to consider how the vast body of research that has focused on psychopathology exemplifies the challenges facing positive psychology. In several variants of cognitive therapy—not to mention optimism training—clients are informed that certain thoughts are dysfunctional. The first step is to increase self-monitoring and awareness of thoughts. The second step is to pinpoint thoughts that are dysfunctional with appropriate labels. The third step is to refute or challenge the validity of these thoughts. The final step is to replace these negative dysfunctional thoughts with more positive, constructive thoughts and thereby lessen the amount of negative emotion experienced. Essentially, some negative emotions and thoughts are problematic and need to be purged and hopefully replaced with more positive emotions and thoughts. In contrast, in mindfulness- and acceptance-based interventions, clients are taught that thoughts are thoughts, neither good nor bad, and they can be observed and explored without getting snagged into a resource-depleting struggle for control. In cognitive therapies the goal is to modify the content of one's thoughts and feelings. The goal of acceptance- and mindfulness-based approaches is to change relationships with thoughts and feelings––taking steps toward meaningful strivings while observing and being receptive to whatever internal experiences accompany the journey. While both perspectives share features such as insight about how automatic, habitual mental reactions can increase stressful reactions, a person cannot be nonjudgmental, open, and curious toward thoughts while simultaneously holding the belief that well-being stems from refuting negative thoughts and then replacing them with more positive thoughts" (Kashdan & Steger, 2011, p. 11).

"A narrow approach to well-being that is circumscribed to happiness might be less advantageous than a broader approach that includes happiness as only one of several dimensions within a matrix. Other dimensions in this broad, matrix approach include meaning and purpose in life, mindfulness, achievement, life balance and flexibility, and psychological needs for belonging, competence, and autonomy, among others" (Kashdan & Steger, 2011, p. 11).

In their introductory article on positive psychology, Seligman and Csikszentmihalyi (2000) argued that at the individual level, positive psychology is about a collection of positive individual psychological characteristics and traits. In an opposing view, McNulty and Fincham (2011, p. 2) "argue that wellbeing is not determined solely by people's psychological characteristics but instead is instead [sic] determined jointly by the interplay between those characteristics and qualities of people's social environments"



12). Positive psychology in relation to humanistic psychology

"Since psychology is in its infancy as a science, and so pitifully little is known by comparison with what we need to know, a good psychologist should be a humble man. Feeling his responsibility, he should be very conscious of how much he ought to know, and how little he actually does know. Unfortunately, too many psychologists are not humble, but are, rather, swollen with little knowledge. There is, in fact, no greater danger than an arrogant psychologist or psychiatrist" (Maslow, 1965a, p. 20).

"Psychology should be more humanistic, that is, more concerned with the problems of humanity, and less with the problems of the guild. The sad thing is that most students come into psychology with humanistic interests. They want to find out about people; they want to understand love, hate, hope, fear, ecstasy, happiness, the meaning of living. But what is so often done for these high hopes and yearnings? Most graduate, and even undergraduate, training turns away from these subjects, which are called fuzzy, unscientific, tender–minded, mystical. (I couldn't find the word 'love' indexed in any of the psychology books on my shelves, even the ones on marriage.) Instead the student is offered dry bones, techniques, precision, and huge mountains of facts which have little relation to the interests which brought him into psychology" (Maslow, 1965a, p. 20).

"Psychology ought to become more positive and less negative. It should have higher ceilings, and not be afraid of the loftier possibilities of the human being. One major shortcoming of research psychology, and psychiatry as well, is its pessimistic, negative and limited conception of the full height to which the human being can attain. Partly because of this preconception, it has so far revealed many of man's shortcomings, weaknesses and ills, but few of his virtues, potentialities or higher aspirations" (Maslow, 1965a, p. 27).

"This is not a call for optimism. Rather it is a demand for realism in the best sense of the word. It is ridiculous to identify realism with darkness, misery, pathology and breakdown, as so many contemporary novelists have done. Happiness is as real as unhappiness; gratification is as real as frustration; love is as real as hostility" (Maslow, 1965a, p. 27).

"My belief is that such a health–psychology will inevitably transform our deepest conceptions of human nature. It will wean us away from our almost universal habit of regarding normality as a special case of the abnormal, and teach us that instead the abnormal is a special case of the normal, and that psychological illness is primarily a struggle toward health" (Maslow, 1965a, p. 28).

The following paragraph obviously created a firestorm of controversy:

"Unfortunately, humanistic psychology did not attract much of a cumulative empirical base, and it spawned myriad therapeutic self–help movements. In some of its incarnations, it emphasized the self and encouraged a self–centeredness that played down concerns for collective well–being. Further debate will determine whether this came about because Maslow and Rogers were ahead of the times, because these flaws were inherent in their original vision, or because of overly enthusiastic followers. However, one legacy of the humanism of the 1960s is prominently displayed in any large bookstore: The ''psychology'' section contains at least 10 shelves on crystal healing, aromatherapy, and reaching the inner child for every shelf of books that tries to uphold some scholarly standard" (Seligman & Csikszentmihalyi, 2000, p. 7).

Commentary: I find it bizarre that these authors would say this and not appreciate or anticipate that the same thing would happen with positive psychology. Not only that, but Seligman himself has contributed at least a foot of shelf space in the very self–help section he criticizes. In addition, some of his colleagues have also jumped on self–help bandwagon as well, for example, Lyubomirsky recently published a book for general readers called The how of happiness: A new approach to getting the life you want and has an iPhone app called "live happy" (See Ruark, 2009).

"We wish that Seligman and Csikszentmihalyi (2000) themselves had done a more scholarly job of investigating humanistic psychology. Neither the theory nor practice of humanistic psychology is narrowly focused on the narcissistic self or on individual fulfillment" (Bohart & Greening, 2001, p. 81).

Common ground between humanistic psychology and positive psychology has been noted (Resnick, Warmoth, & Serlin, 2001; Robbins, 2008; Sheldon & Kasser, 2001).

Taylor (2001) has confronted Seligman's apparently disdain for humanistic psychology. Echoing and enlarging on Cowen & Kilmer (2002), both Bohart and Greening (2001) and Taylor (2001) emphasized the rich theoretical and empirical tradition reflected in the literature of psychology and in particular of humanistic psychology that was not considered in the formulation of positive psychology as presented by Seligman. It is one thing to ignore a body of literature, it is another to imply that such a body of literature does not exist.

"Positive psychology seems to emerge as a renewed humanistic approach to the individual and collective potential for happiness, but this time it is strengthened by empirical data and adequate research methodologies" (Lampropoulos, 2001, p. 87).

"Unfortunately, it [humanistic psychology] never penetrated mainstream psychology, even though Maslow had been president of the American Psychological Association. The reasons for remaining a largely therapeutic endeavor outside of academic contact probably had to do with its alienation from conventional empirical science. Unlike Rogers and Maslow, subsequent leaders in Humanistic Psychology were quite skeptical about conventional empirical methods. They coupled their important premises with a sloppier, radical epistemology stressing phenomenology and individual case histories. This made it doubly hard for mainstream psychology to digest. But academic psychology of the 1960s was constipated, and they never invited Humanistic Psychology in" (Seligman, 2002a, p. 275).

Comment: Seligman says humanistic psychology never penetrated the mainstream "even though" Maslow had been president of the APA (elected July 8, 1966). This remark does not reflect any understanding of the context of Maslow in this position. At the time Maslow was trying to develop transpersonal psychology. He expressed his irritation and frustration with the APA: "I remember how saddened and irritated I was by an official report of a major committee of the American Psychological Association on the future of psychological science. The recommendations were principally methodological: how to be cautious, how to check, how to discover mistakes, how to validate, how to be accurate and precise. Hardly a word was mentioned about the need for creativeness, for new ideas, breaking out of the rut, taking a chance, encouraging uncertainty and exploration. It was all so much like the road maps given out at a gas station, that tell us how to make our way from known place to place. Not a word is given about the no–man's land where there are no street signs and paved roads; not a word about the pioneering and trail–breaking that are necessary before the maps can be made" (Maslow, 1965a, pp. 25–26). Add to this the fact that he suffered a near fatal heart attack in 1967.

Maslow had begun to study business in 1962 and wrote a book on his observations of enlightened management (Maslow, 1965b). His impact on business and management philosophy was probably as strong as it was on psychology (Conley, 2007; Maslow, 1998; Maslow & Stephens, 2000; Wren & Greenwood, 1998). After his experience as president of the APA, Maslow left academia to take an honorary position at the Saga Corporation, a company he had been consulting for some time, in Menlo Park California.

In reference to the above, McDonald and O'Callaghan (2008, p. 135) note that Seligman's partner in presenting a positive psychology, Csikszentmihalyi, was a phenomenologist himself and that his research consisted of experiential sampling, a phenomenological research technique.

"Too many people with nonscientific agendas joined the humanists, and after 1969 the movement was taken over by the psychotherapeutic counterculture" (Keyes & Haidt, 2003, p. 5) Comment: "Maslow's articulation of self–actualization and peak experiences resonated strongly with the counterculture, but Maslow himself was disparaging of the movement. He was a supporter of the Vietnam War and viewed hippies and flower children as overindulged and under disciplined. One of his major proponents who then became a counterculture icon himself was the student radical Abbie Hoffman. Hoffman had been a student of Maslow's at Brandeis University and embraced Maslow's work as foundational for the counterculture revolution. Maslow attempted to distance himself from Hoffman and other 'fringe elements' but was never able to block the appropriation of his ideas by this group and the human potential movement more generally" (Pickren & Rutherford, 2010, p. 229).

"What distinguishes positive psychology from the humanistic psychology of the 1960s and 1970s and from the positive thinking movement is its reliance on empirical research to understand people and the lives they lead. Humanists were often skeptical about the scientific method and what it could yield and yet were unable to offer an alternative other than the insight that people were good" (Peterson & Seligman, 2004, p. 4)

"much of the emphasis in humanistic psychology—particularly early humanistic psychology—was on theories of optimal personality development such as self–actualization. While positive psychology also investigates potentials for greater psychological development, it places greater emphasis on the well–being and satisfaction of the "average" person on the street (see Sheldon & King, 2001). In most studies, positive psychologists have focused on the benefits of simply being more happy and satisfied with life" (Compton, 2005, p. 13).

"The premise of humanistic psychology was that people have a free will and make choices that influence their well-being. What also makes it very different from other perspectives in psychology is belief in the actualising tendency - a fundamental motivation towards growth. Rogers, the originator of the concept, describes it as:
' ... man's tendency to actualize himself, to become potentialities. By this I mean the directional trend which is evident in all organic and human life - the urge to expand, develop, mature - the tendency to express and activate all the capacities of the organism and the self. This tendency may become deeply buried under layer after layer of encrusted psychological defences; it may be hidden behind elaborate facades that deny its existence; it is my belief, however, based on my experience, that it exists in every individual, and awaits only the proper conditions to be released and expressed'75" (Boniwell, 2006, p. 40).

"'The fundamental difference between humanistic psychology and positive psychology is in their relationship to research, epistemology, and methodology," says Ben–Shahar. 'Many who joined the 'Third Wave' were not rigorous. Humanistic psychology gave birth to the self–help movement, and lots of self–help books have come out with concepts grounded in emotion and intuition. Positive psychology combines those things with reason and research.'" (Lambert, 2007, p. 27).

"Given the critiques of humanistic psychology leveled by Seligman and Csikszentmihályi (2000), particularly with regard to the myriad self–help movements that the movement spawned, it is ironic that their efforts to expand the terrain of applied psychology practice parallel those of humanistic psychologists in the 1960s (Herman, 1995). Indeed, the opening section of Maslow's Toward a Psychology of Being (1962) was entitled 'A Larger Jurisdiction for Psychology.' Moreover, positive psychology has already given birth to a swarm of media pundits, self–help gurus, and advice books, many written by Seligman himself" (Becker & Marecek, 2008, p. 600).

""By valorizing their own movement, the authors discredit and disengage from humanistic psychology, which is painted by Seligman, Csikszentmihalyi, and Peterson as a false prophet" (McDonald & O'Callaghan, 2008, p. 134).

"Positive psychology asserts to being a unique approach that differentiates itself from its main predecessor, humanistic psychology, by embracing quantitative empirical research that humanistic psychology supposedly eschews. Martin Seligman's foreword claims that humanistic psychology largely lacks the use of "mainstream, cumulative, and replicable scientific method" (p. xvii), which is purported to be the foundation of positive psychology. Seligman does admit, however, that both positive and humanistic psychology can be differentiated from mainstream psychology in their emphasis on what is positive (e.g., health, goodness) in contrast to the prevailing focus on the negative (e.g., pathology, evil)" (Friedman, 2009).

"this encyclopedia [Lopez, 2009] does not support the contention that positive psychology is a coherent field different from its main predecessor, humanistic psychology. In fact, many of its entries deal with explicitly humanistic psychology topics. Humanistic psychology itself is an entry, as are avowedly humanistic topics like existential psychology" (Friedman, 2009).

"positive psychology has emerged as a repackaged product that has been aggressively marketed and has achieved amazing success as a result. Despite its rhetoric to the contrary, this encyclopedia [Lopez, 2009] unwittingly exposes positive psychology's similarity to both its predecessor and the mainstream. Its importance may lie in its revitalization of a humanistic psychology that attempts to more fully embrace positivistic empirical methods" (Friedman, 2009).

"Positive psychologists enjoy quite a tempestuous love– hate relationship with the humanistic psychology of Carl Rogers and Abraham Maslow. On the one hand, they applaud the focus on the individual's potential for self–change and self–enhancement. On the other, they resent the grandmotherly tone and lack of scientific rigor in humanistic psychology, its assumption of human beings' inherent goodness, and its easy degeneration into self–help mantras about narcissistic happiness in lieu of meaningful and collective well–being (see, e.g., Seligman & Csikszentmihalyi, 2000, p. 7)" (Kristjansson, 2010, p. 297).

"Positive psychology is justifiably a branch of humanistic psychology. Let me clarify: To the extent that humanistic psychology1 stands for "What it means to be fully and experientially human, and how that understanding illuminates the vital and fulfilled life" – and it does, according to our texts (Schneider, Bugental, & Pierson, 2001) – I hereby advocate for a branch of humanistic psychology called positive psychology.
I am happy (and I use that word advisedly!) to endorse humanistic psychology as a positive psychology, and positive psychology as a humanism – yet with one major caveat: Positive psychology as it is presently constituted reflects what I call a "narrow band," cognitive behaviourally informed theoretical perspective. What I mean by this is that prevailing studies of happiness (or even that which has been termed human flourishing) represent but a circumscribed range of how such phenomena are actually experienced "on the ground," so to speak, in people's everyday worlds. If this were not the case, I don't think we'd see so many contradictory cases in positive psychology research, but I will elaborate on this momentarily" (Schneider, 2011, pp. 32–33).

"I advocate for a humanistically informed positive psychology, one that would supplement positive psychology scales with intimate, in–depth portraitures, and that would augment positive psychology theorizing with theorizing that accounts for the ranges of human fulfillment. In his study of self–actualizers, Abe Maslow (1968) made a similar point. One observation that had long stumped him, he said, began to fall into place, and that is that 'these most mature of all people were also strongly childlike. These same people [with] the strongest egos ever described and the most definitely individual, were also precisely the ones who could be most egoless, self–transcending, and problem–centered' (p. 140)" (Schneider, 2011, p. 36).

"Positive psychology is similar to humanistic and phenomenological psychology because of the interest in the individual's sense–making experience. However, positive psychology suggests that both the good and the bad about life are genuine, whereas humanists often—but not always—assert that people are inherently good. Second, positive psychology is anchored in the scientific method, whereas humanists often—but not always—are skeptical of science and the scientific method (Peterson, 2006; Seligman & Csikszentmihalyi, 2000)" (Hoy & Tarter, 2011, p. 430).

"Humanistic psychologists assert that people are basically good but the process of self–actualization as improvement was not understood; humanistic psychologists were overarchingly optimistic about people's ability to change for the better. Cognitive psychologists reacted against behaviorism by applying the scientific method to the study of problem solving and rational choices. Positive psychology embraces the optimism of the humanists, the potential mechanisms of improvement of the cognitive psychologists, and the rigorous research methods of science" (Hoy & Tarter, 2011, p. 431).



13). Positive psychology and cancer.

See: Annals of Behavioral Medicine 39(1) 2010

There has been a fairly sharp exchange on the use of positive psychology in cancer patients. The following two entries present the major argument.

In reviewing the role of positive psychology in cancer, Coyne and Tennen, (2010, p. 16) present the following conclusion "we urge positive psychologists to rededicate themselves to positive psychology based on scientific evidence rather than wishful thinking."

"positive psychology researchers have run well ahead and even counter to what we know, have failed to check theory against evidence, and have been seemingly oblivious to the cumulative empirical base of the broader psychological and cancer literatures. In doing so, they have failed to live up to the pronouncements of the field's spokespeople while promulgating bad science" . . . "In their enthusiasm to advance positive psychology, its advocates have created an enormous gap between their assertions and scientific evidence" (Coyne & Tennen, 2010, p. 17).



14). Positive psychotherapy

See: Journal of Psychotherapy Integration, 18(2) 2008

"This article develops the hypothesis that intervention strategies that cultivate positive emotions are particularly suited for preventing and treating problems rooted in negative emotions, such as anxiety, depression, aggression, and stress related health problems. Fredrickson's (1998) broaden–and–build model of positive emotions provides the foundation for this application. According to this model, the form and function of positive and negative emotions are distinct and complementary. Negative emotions (e.g., fear, anger, and sadness) narrow an individual's momentary thought–action repertoire toward specific actions that served the ancestral function of promoting survival. By contrast, positive emotions (e.g., joy, interest, and contentment) broaden an individual's momentary thought–action repertoire, which in turn can build that individual's enduring personal resources, resources that also served the ancestral function of promoting survival. One implication of the broaden–and–build model is that positive emotions have an undoing effect on negative emotions" (Fredrickson, 2000, p. 1).

"writing about the trauma has been assumed to provide an outlet for previously undisclosed emotions and to provide an opportunity to revise the experience and gain closure through language" (King & Miner, 2000, p. 220).

"Is it really necessary that individuals delve deeply into a negative traumatic event to experience the healing power of writing? (King & Miner, 2000, p. 221).

"writing in a way that emphasizes the positive aspects of one's traumatic experiences may ensure the same health benefits as writing about the experience in a way that maximizes the negative emotion experienced without the emotional costs. (King & Miner, 2000, p. 229).

"In our own clinical practice, we have attempted to use a positive psychology approach in working with people with schizophrenia and youths with behavioral disorders" (Ahmed & Boisvert, 2006 p. 334).

"Positive psychology thus focuses on creating an optimal environment in which positive skills may be more readily practiced and, consequently, in which clients are able to engage in a more productive day routine. Psychological knowledge and principles may provide therapists with a better understanding of what triggers or maintains negative or maladaptive behaviors and under what conditions positive behaviors can be elicited. More important, positive psychology principles and research may provide therapists with a greater understanding of how clients' improved emotional status (e.g., happiness) can promote better self–redirection or a better response to therapeutic redirection" (Ahmed & Boisvert, 2006 p. 335).

Three good things: Every night for one week, look back at your day just before you go to bed and find three things that went well for you during the day. Write them down and reflect on your role in them"

"Positive psychotherapy (PPT) contrasts with standard interventions for depression by increasing positive emotion, engagement, and meaning rather than directly targeting depressive symptoms" (Seligman, Rashid, & Parks, 2006, p. 774).

"We call this approach positive psychotherapy (PPT). PPT rests on the hypothesis that depression can be treated effectively not only by reducing its negative symptoms but also by directly and primarily building positive emotions, character strengths, and meaning. It is possible that directly building these positive resources may successfully counteract negative symptoms and may also buffer against their future reoccurrence" (Seligman, Rashid, & Parks, 2006, p. 775).

"In January of 2005, an exercise Web site, www.reflectivehappiness.com, was opened. This site has a book club, a newsletter, and forum discussion of positive psychology each month, but most important, one new positive psychology exercise is posted each month. The first month's exercise is the three blessings ("Write down three things that went well today and why they went well"), and the first month's subscription to the Web site is free (thereafter it costs $10 per month)" (Seligman, Rashid, & Parks, 2006, p. 776).

"Individual PPT with severely depressed clients led to more symptomatic improvement and to more remission from depressive disorder than did treatment as usual and treatment as usual plus antidepressant medication. It also enhanced happiness" (Seligman, Rashid, & Parks, 2006, p. 776).

"[Nevertheless,] we are encouraged by the potency of positive psychology exercises delivered on the Web with no human hands, by the congeniality of the approach to young depressed students, by how long the benefits lasted after treatment ended, and by the sheer effect size of PPT when delivered by a skilled therapist. Should these results be replicated, we speculate that future therapy for depression may combine talking about troubles with understanding and building positive emotion, engagement, and meaning" (Seligman, Rashid, & Parks, 2006, p. 786).

"Because most psychotherapy theories do not have a well–developed set of axioms and assumptions about the role of positive emotions (PE) in psychotherapy, our aim is to both synthesize some commonalities and highlight some distinctions drawn by the contributors to this special section" (Fitzpatrick & Stalikas, 2008, p. 249).

"For some reason, positive emotions were systematically absent from the psychotherapy community's field of interest. Fredrickson's (1998) article challenged our assumption and, at the very least, contributed in motivating us to pose the question, "Why do our psychotherapy theories not address the role of positive emotions? How come we have not been studying their potential therapeutic value?" (Stalikas & Fitzpatrick, 2008, p. 156).

"the broaden–and–build theory of positive emotion of Barbara Fredrickson . . . posits that experiencing a positive emotion allows the individual to access and develop a broadened repertoire of responses. The new responses create further positive emotions forming an upward spiral" (Fitzpatrick & Stalikas, 2008, p. 252).

"Positive emotions are not a replacement for the careful attention to the distress of the individual client that is a hallmark of good therapy" (Fitzpatrick & Stalikas, 2008, p. 256).

"Our central argument is that mental health workers will need new approaches to assessment and treatment if the goal is promoting well–being rather than treating illness" (Slade, 2010, p. 1).

"The WHO declaration about mental health is also clear: it is 'a state of well–being in which the individual realizes his or her own abilities, can cope with the normal stresses of life, can work productively and fruitfully, and is able to make a contribution to his or her community'" (Slade, 2010, p. 2).

"careful consideration should be given to the balance between research into mental illness and mental health. Among US adults with no mental illness, one in 10 are languishing and less than 2 in 10 are flourishing. The implicit expectation that research into mental illness will promote mental well–being is neither empirically justified nor a cost–free assumption – the opportunity costs for an illness–dominated research agenda may be high" (Slade, 2010, p. 4).

"The second implication is that it is possible to be moderately mentally healthy, or even flourishing, despite the presence of ongoing mental illness. In other words, personal recovery is possible even in the presence of current symptoms" (Slade, 2010, p. 5).

"positive psychology is unequivocally based on empirical research, and unlike recovery focused research has not avoided the use of nomothetic approaches, even to assess complex constructs such as meaning of life [71]. This scientific orientation has led to an emphasis on conceptual clarity, the use of scientific methods, and convergence on overarching theories [51]. The result is an academically credible scientific discipline [37], whose evidence is based on robust scientific methodologies [73]" (Slade, 2010, p. 6).
comment: the above quote requires a bit more thought. Slade states that this is an academically credible scientific discipline and then supports this with the reference to Snyder and Lopez (2002). Commentary: Since when does a handbook "create academic credibility?"Commentary: It seems ironic that Seligman has criticized humanistic psychology for their questionable research methodologies when he is "doing research" over the web – is this "robust?"

Two highly complementary "new sources of knowledge are now available to mental health professionals: collated syntheses of narratives of recovery from mental illness, and empirical evidence about well–being from the academic discipline of positive psychology" (Slade, 2010, p. 12).

Positive Activity Interventions (PAIs) are intentional activities such as performing acts of kindness, practicing optimism, and counting one's blessing gleaned from decades of research into how happy and unhappy people are different. This new approach has the potential to benefit depressed individuals who don't respond to pharmacotherapy or are not able or willing to obtain treatment, is less expensive to administer, is relatively less time–consuming and promises to yield rapid improvement of mood symptoms, holds little to no stigma, and carries no side effects. Although the paper found that positive activity interventions are effective in teaching individuals ways to increase their positive thinking, positive affect and positive behaviors, only two studies specifically tested these activities in individuals with mild depression. In one of these studies, lasting improvements were found for six months. Effective PAIs used in the study included writing letters of gratitude, counting one's blessings, practicing optimism, performing acts of kindness, meditating on positive feelings toward others, and using one's signature strengths, all of which can be easily implemented into a daily routine at low cost. (Layous, Chancellor, Lyubomirsky, Wang, & Doraiswamy, 2011).



15). Positive psychology in the workplace

Running through Seligman's approach is an underlying endorsement of capitalism, endorsement of the American Society as status quo and an implicit application of positive psychology to the workplace.

"Several researchers have applied positive psychology to the workplace (Cameron, Dutton, & Quinn, 2003). Building from the foundation of the positive psychology movement, recent attention has been paid to positive organizational behavior (POB), defined as "the study and application of positively oriented human resource strengths that can be measured, developed, and effectively managed for performance improvement in today's workplace" (Luthans, 2002, p. 59). Three POB constructs receiving recent attention have been hope, subjective well–being, and confidence" (Hodges & Clifton, 2004 p. 263).

"positive organizational behavior (POB). POB emphasizes the need for more focused theory building, research, and effective application of positive traits, states, and behaviors of employees in organizations" (Bakker & Schaufeli, 2008, p. 147).

"What can organizations do to attract and keep creative, dedicated, and thriving employees who make organizations flourish?" (Bakker & Schaufeli, 2008, p. 147).

"Typically, POB studies individual positive psychological conditions and human resource strengths that are—in one way or the other—related to employee well–being or performance improvement. This may involve, for instance, the predictive validity of general mental ability and emotional intelligence for sales performance. Research may also focus on the cognitive capacities of creativity and wisdom, and the affective capacities of work engagement and humor. POB studies also examine the role of states like self–efficacy, optimism, hope, resilience, and other personal resources in coping with organizational demands or in fostering performance. Further, POB–researchers are interested in peak performance in organizations and examine the conditions under which employees thrive" (Bakker & Schaufeli, 2008, pp. 148–149).

Journal of Organizational Behavior, 29(2), [Special issue]. 2008.

Journal of Organizational Behavior, 30(2), [Special issue]. 2009.

"The purpose of this special issue of the Journal of Organizational Behavior is to tangibly demonstrate that the concept of a "positive psychology" is gaining importance in both psychology and organizational behavior" (Wright & Quick, 2009, p. 147).

"positive psychology, with its forward–looking orientation, suggests that the potential for a more hopeful, productive, and satisfying future can emerge for people who are struggling to find their way through these tough times, as well as for many others who are somewhat more secure, but find themselves coasting along without much joy and meaning in their day–to–day work lives" (Froman, 2010, p. 60).

"Results reported by Losada and Heaphy (2004) showed that high performance teams demonstrated significantly more positive functioning defined in mathematical modeling terms as ''positivity ratios'' when compared to average and low performance teams" (Froman, 2010, p. 65).

"In these times of economic upheaval, stress, and uncertainty, great importance was given to the idea that organizations need to develop cultures of virtue, cultures built around principles of integrity, ethics, trust, and respect. Organizations bring out the best in their members by focusing on such positive psychologic concepts as strengths, hope, optimism, self–confidence, self–motivation, resilience, joy, and gratitude. Organizations of virtue strive to do well by doing good, and strive to do good by doing well. They create conditions for their members to thrive and flourish in ways that bridge economic and human development" (Froman, 2010, p. 68).

"Positive education . . . will enable youth to perform better at school and to perform better later in the workplace" (Seligman, Ernst, Gillham, Reivich, & Linkins, 2009; Seligman & Fowler, 2011, p. 85).



16). Coaches of positive psychology

"An important point I want to emphasize, however, is that my definition of psychologist is broad but specific. I mean to include not just professors of psychology but rather all those–and only those–who are interested in developing a truer, clearer, more empirical conception of human nature. This would exclude many professors of psychology and many psychiatrists, but would include some sociologists, anthropologists, educators, philosophers, theologians, publicists, linguists, business men, and so on" (Maslow, 1965a, pp. 19–20).

"Coaching aims to produce fast personality changes through the setting and acquisition of goals. It is explicitly concerned with the promotion of well-being and performance 222, something that positive psychology takes an active interest in" . . . "attention should be redirected from 'fixing' the client, or looking for signs of pathology (which, supposedly, is a job of therapists)," . . . "coaching is intended to work on the construction of the client's skill base and development of their unrecognised talents and resources" (Boniwell, 2006, p. 109).

"This study is the first controlled study completed on an evidence–based group life–coaching intervention. It provided evidence that a cognitive–behavioral, solution–focused life coaching group programme is effective in increasing goal striving, well–being, and hope. The results also suggest that gains can be maintained over time. It is suggested that the role of hope theory may explain increases in goal striving and well–being within a life coaching intervention for a non–clinical population" (Green, Oades, & Grant, 2006, p. 149).

"Coaching is a practice without limits on the scope, lacking theoretical foundations and meaningful accreditation, one that has yet to develop a significant empirical base" (Seligman, 2007, p. 266). Of course, Seligman's solution to coachings' problems is positive psychology. "Positive psychology can provide coaching with a delimited scope of practice, with interventions and measurements that work, and with a view of adequate qualifications to be a coach" (Seligman, 2007, p. 266).
Comment: This paragraph needs to be read carefully as it contains significant implications. Seligman essentially is taking the concept of coaching and applying it to the average person. Note that Seligman says that you don't need to be a psychologist to be a positive psychology coach. "One need not be a licensed psychologist, or even a psychologist, to practise positive psychology or to practise coaching. Positive psychology is not intended to be an umbrella for yet another self–interested guild. People who are adequately trained in the techniques of coaching, in the theories of positive psychology, in valid measurement of the positive states and traits, in the interventions that work, and who know when to refer a client to someone who is better trained will be, by my lights, bona fide coaches of positive psychology" (Seligman, 2007, pp. 266–267).

"The term 'coaching' appears intermittently in the literature prior to the 1980s and was generally limited to the study and enhancement of sports performance (Gaylord, 1967; Griffith, 1926). Contemporary usage of the term tends to be much broader, however, with coaches interested in addressing performance issues across multiple domains of life (Grant, 2003b). As such, developments within the HPM [Human potential movement] can be considered forerunners to the emergence of the coaching industry" (Spence, 2007, p. 260).

"in this paper we contend that coaching psychology is a form of applied positive psychology and it can be seen as an emerging subdiscipline in psychology. Evidence–based coaching can be a useful real–life experimental methodology for psychologists exploring the psychomechanics of goal attainment, the development of resilience, wellbeing, hope and other personal strengths" (Grant & Cavanagh, 2007, pp. 239–240)

"Research and practical experience suggests that coaching clients have at least the same level of psychopathology as is found in the general population, if not higher. The real question is not whether coaching psychology clients have therapeutic needs. The issue is how the task of coaching differs from the task of psychotherapy. In other words, what are the boundaries between the different forms of applied psychology?" (Grant & Cavanagh, 2007, p. 240).



17). Positive youth psychology (Positive Youth Development (PYD))

"This article analyzes the development of initiative as an exemplar of one of many learning experiences that should be studied as part of positive youth development" (Larson, 2000, p. 170).

"The field of positive youth development focuses on each and every child's unique talents, strengths, interests, and future potential" (Damon, 2004, p. 13).

"The positive youth development approach aims at understanding, educating, and engaging children in productive activities rather than at correcting, curing, or treating them for maladaptive tendencies or so–called disabilities" (Damon, 2004, p. 15).

"Positive psychology can help reclaim youth, not only from the actual problems they may experience but also from the unintended hazards of a world–view that regards them as inherently fragile and troubled. The perspective of positive psychology thus has several values. Most generally, positive psychology reframes how one looks at children. It is good to remind the larger world that 'the kids are alright.' Most are happy and healthy. They love their parents, and they appreciate their teachers. They are passionately interested in cultivating good character, in doing the right thing, and in making a difference (Steen, Kachorek, & Peterson, 2003)" (Peterson, 2009, p. 5).

"The perspective of positive psychology reaffirms the premise of these [youth development approaches] programs while adding some novel ideas based in current theory and research" (Peterson, 2009, p. 6).

Peterson (2009) notes that many youth development programs have a long history including: YWCA, YMCA, Boys Clubs and Girls Clubs of America, Big Brothers of America, Big Sisters of America, Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, and 4H.

"Children's prosocial orientation, including their empathy, sympathy, and prosocial behavior, has been related to high status within the peer group, accomplishing one's own needs, and maintaining positive relationships with others (Eisenberg, Fabes, & Spinrad, 2006; Rose–Krasnor & Denham, 2009)" (Eggum, Eisenberg, Kao, Spinrad, Bolnick, Hofer, et al., 2011, p. 4).

"Promoting children's EU (emotion understanding) and ToM (theory of mind) may facilitate development of prosocial orientation. Results from previous studies may suggest ways of doing so. For example, aspects of parenting, such as explaining emotions and supportive reactions to children's affect expression, have been related to children's EU" (Eggum, Eisenberg, Kao, Spinrad, Bolnick, Hofer, et al., 2011, p. 13).

"Institutions responsible for educating and socializing children, such as schools, should monitor students' full range of functioning, using resources that evaluate students' strengths and SWB as well as maladaptive dysfunctions" (Suldo, Thalji, & Ferron, 2011, p. 28).

"Adolescents' character strengths predicted their subsequent well–being. Other–directed strengths (e.g., forgiveness, kindness, teamwork) and temperance (e.g., self–regulation, perseverance) at the start of high school predicted fewer symptoms of depression through the end of 10th grade. Transcendence (e.g., hope, gratitude, meaning), temperance, other–directed, and intellectual strengths (e.g., curiosity, love of learning) predicted higher levels of life satisfaction. These findings suggest that character strengths contribute to well–being during adolescence"(Gillham, Adams–Deutsch, Werner, Reivich, Coulter–Heindl, Linkins, et al., 2011, p. 40). [Seligman is the last author].

"Transcendence strengths predicted life satisfaction, even when controlling for the influence of other types of strengths. Adolescents who scored low on transcendence at baseline were unlikely to report high life satisfaction during the first 2 years of high school. These findings illustrate the importance of developing positive relationships and of having dreams and a sense of purpose during adolescence" (Gillham, Adams–Deutsch, Werner, Reivich, Coulter–Heindl, Linkins, et al., 2011, p. 41). [Seligman is the last author].

"Contrary to our expectations, adolescents' strengths did not reliably predict their reports of happiness. We believe this reflects a problem in measurement" (Gillham, Adams–Deutsch, Werner, Reivich, Coulter–Heindl, Linkins, et al., 2011, p. 41). [Seligman is the last author].

"positive psychology and positive youth development (PYD) approaches. These perspectives hold that a complete picture of successful adolescent psychosocial development entails both the absence of negative behavioral and psychological indicators (e.g., delinquency, risk behaviors, depression, school dropout) as well as the presence of positive indicators (e.g., self–confidence, optimism, purpose in life, school success); that is, our kids should not merely be surviving, they should be thriving" (Bundick, 2011, p. 57).

[Results] "suggest that the act of participating in student leadership activities in high school promotes the development of purpose and a sense that one is on the path to a hopeful future, and that volunteering uniquely contributes to greater life satisfaction and overall positive development. These results are in some places consistent, and in others inconsistent, with previous research" . . . These results also suggest, rather dishearteningly, that engagement in the creative arts on average inhibits the development of purpose in life" (Bundick, 2011, p. 70).

"Results showed that positive development was positively associated with participation in student leadership and volunteering, and negatively associated with participation in the creative arts" (Bundick, 2011, p. 57).

"From this longitudinal study, we conclude that childhood well–being predicts positive adult wellbeing, and not merely the absence of mental ill–health" (Richards & Huppert, 2011, p. 75).

"Higher positive development in emerging adulthood was predicted by higher socioeconomic status, having better control of emotions, better adjustment to the school setting, having stronger relationships with parents and peers, and greater community engagement. There were some indications of gender differences in the strength of predictors of positive development for males and females. These findings indicate a number of potential domains that may foster positive development during this transition period" (O'Connor, Sanson, Hawkins, Letcher, Toumbourou, Smart, Vassallo, et al., 2011, pp. 869–870).

Temperament versus personality traits. The authors of this study did not find that personality traits were a significant predictor of subsequent positive functioning. The authors suggest their study looked at the broader aspects of personality compared to earlier studies that looked at temperament. The authors conclude "personality traits may not make a significant unique contribution positive development after underlying temperament dimensions are taken into account" (O'Connor, Sanson, Hawkins, Letcher, Toumbourou, Smart, Vassallo, et al., 2011, p. 871).



18). Positive psychology and conceptualizations of the self

"If, during positive emotions, self–boundaries expand and become more permeable, [social broadening] at such moments people might more readily see their oneness with others and think in terms of 'we' instead of 'me' versus 'you'" (Waugh & Fredrickson, 2006, p. 103).

"Indications that positive emotions increase feelings of self–other overlap shed light on a possible mechanism through which positive emotions cultivate social closeness, forge lasting relationships, and build complex understanding of others" (Waugh & Fredrickson, 2006, p. 104).

"Positive psychology clearly is concerned with the development and enhancement of the self. But what kind of self is the subject of positive psychology? Numerous scholars (e.g., Baumeister, 1987; Gergen, 1973; Guignon, 2004; Sampson, 1988) have argued that conceptions of self vary within and across cultures and over time, and that the boundaries of identity (i.e., how we define the self) shape how we think about the good person and the good life" (Christopher & Hickinbottom, 2008, p. 565).

"The abundant psychological research into the self—its trajectory and oscillations—that blossomed in the 1980s happened to be research exclusively into the self as viewed from a particular historically situated conceptual perspective, a perspective in which the self is understood as a unique self–contained unit of being and study, immersed in inner space. Positive psychology has quietly taken over this independent Western/liberal/individualist) self–concept, as distinct from the interdependent (Eastern/traditional/holistic) self–concept, and carried it to its logical extreme" (Kristjansson, 2010, p. 298).

"In this paper, we propose that attaining authentic happiness is linked to the way we relate to the notion of a self, and more particularly to its nature. We defend the idea that the perception of a structured self in the form of a seemingly solid, permanent and independent entity, favors a self–centered psychological functioning, which is the source of unstable, fluctuating happiness. In opposition to this, we propose that selfless psychological functioning emerges from the perception of the self as being flexible (i.e., a dynamic experience) and that this constitutes a source of authentic and durable happiness" (Dambrun & Ricard, 2011, p. 138).

"Consistently, the perception of availability of true self–knowledge (operationalized as the metacognitive experience of ease in describing one's true self) predicted meaning in life judgments over and above other potentially related constructs such as mood and self–esteem" (Schlegel, Hicks, King, & Arndt, 2011, p. 745).

"The true self is defined as who a person really is, regardless of his or her outward behavior. Many people believe that this true self is a vitally important part of a person's identity (e.g., Gergen, 1991). Despite the popularity of lay beliefs about the true self, there is little empirical evidence for the psychological foundations and functions of the true self–concept (i.e., a person's avowed true self)" (Schlegel, Hicks, King, & Arndt, 2011, p. 745).

" . . . Aristotle (1998, original work circa 350 bce), [who] believed that the highest form of excellence was achieved through living in accord with one's true self. This idea is a recurring theme throughout the history of both psychology and philosophy and is featured in the works of such notable thinkers as Kierkegaard, James, and Rogers" (Schlegel, Hicks, King, & Arndt, 2011, p. 745).

"clear that people value the traits and roles that most accurately represent their true self concept" (Schlegel, Hicks, King, & Arndt, 2011, p. 754).



19). Positive psychology in relation to personality development

Most contemporary approaches to personality development are based upon Loevinger (1976) and her description of levels of ego development.

"We must know what men are like at their best; not only what they are, but also what they can become. The byproducts of such knowledge are incalculably important. My belief is that such a health–psychology will inevitably transform our deepest conceptions of human nature. It will wean us away from our almost universal habit of regarding normality as a special case of the abnormal, and teach us that instead the abnormal is a special case of the normal, and that psychological illness is primarily a struggle toward health" (Maslow, 1965a, pp. 27–28).

"A human being also tends to grow stronger, wiser, healthier, to actualize his potentialities, to be curious, to wonder, to be –interested, to philosophize, to be creative, to enjoy. He does not only adjust; he also rebels" (Maslow, 1965a, p. 28).

"In any case, the conception of therapy as the elimination of symptoms and illnesses is too limited. We must learn to think of it more as a technique for fostering general growth, for encouraging self–actualization" (Maslow, 1965a, p. 29).

"Psychology should study the human being not just as passive clay, helplessly determined by outside forces. Man is, or should be, an active, autonomous, self–governing mover, chooser and center of his own life. The so–called stimulus–response psychology has unintentionally created what might be called a Stimulus–Response man, passive, shaped, adjusting, learning. With him should be contrasted the creative, active man, who invents, makes decisions, accepts some stimuli and rejects others, who, in fact, creates his own stimuli. Posing this opposition may help in understanding why more and more psychologists are growing worried about the concept of 'adjustment.' Adjustment, whether to the culture, to other people, or to nature, essentially means being passive, letting oneself be shaped from the outside. It is trying to be what others want, instead of searching for one's real self. From this point of view, psychologists are increasingly beginning to criticize the conception of learning as a passive process" (Maslow, 1965a, pp. 31–32).

"In his essential core, no human being is comparable with any other. Therefore his ideals for himself, his path of growth, must also be unique. His goal must arise out of his own nature, and not be chosen by comparison or competition with others. Each man's task is to become the best himself" (Maslow, 1965a, p. 29).

"Our data suggest that it is critical for individuals to construct a story or narrative to explain the traumatic experience. Constructing a story, rather than having a story per se, may be one of the keys to moving from reliving a trauma to returning to the good life" (King & Pennebaker, 1998, p. 53).

"confronting traumas is likely to be an upsetting experience but in allowing oneself to be upset, the individual is free to seek meaning. Research on negative life circumstances isn't necessarily 'biased' as much as it is a reflection of human life–'if it ain't broke, we don't fix it.' Importantly, difficult life experiences also can serve to promote personal growth (Helson & Roberts, 1994)" (King & Pennebaker, 1998, p. 55).

"the goals people seek provide a psychic hub in their lives—lending a sense of purpose to what people do. Goals are inherently contextualized. They attach people to the events of the day and are situated in the circumstances that make up the psychological context of their lives" (King & Hicks, 2006, p. 121).

"the role of narrated "possible selves" in well–being and personality development. We argue that such goals represent a fertile ground for understanding the role of motivational processes through life transitions. When we ask individuals to provide narrative descriptions of their goals, we are asking them to describe and illuminate the phenomenological experience of motivation in their lives. When human beings consider their lost or forsaken goals, they are thinking back on their previous sources of meaning—those things that made their life make sense at one time" (King & Hicks, 2006, p. 122).

"Motives toward self–understanding, personal growth, generativity, and so forth may take precedence over the pursuit of happiness. Furthermore, coping with life–changing experiences may lead to important outcomes that are independent of happiness itself" (King & Hicks, 2006, p. 122).

In Loevinger's (1976) view, growth may only occur when the environment fails to conform to the person's expectations" . . . "When people are faced with significant life events, they have the opportunity to develop the complexity of their perspectives and ultimately themselves. Research on important life changes has supported the notion that the ego may well develop through such experience (Bursik, 1991; Helson, 1992; Helson & Roberts, 1994; Helson & Wink, 1987; King & Smith, 2004)" (King & Hicks, 2006, p. 123).

"a person can come to a psychological understanding of the examined life as one in which the person can engage in his or her own development by actively confronting loss and reconstructing a life worth pursuing" (King & Hicks, 2006, p. 124).

"To be happy and avoid regret, it is best to relegate lost goals to 'what might have been' and move on. The person cannot perseverate on old goals and maintain happiness. Rather, the pursuit of happiness requires a central change in one's motivational system—relinquishing one's previous sources of meaning and embracing life's second chances" (King & Hicks, 2006, p. 128).

"The model of personality development that we propose here involves two processes. First, to maintain a sense of positive well–being, the individual must relinquish cherished goals that are no longer available and reinvest in new goals commensurate with what has been lost or forsaken. A second process involves the place of those forsaken goals in the individuals' enduring self–story. Here, the capacity to acknowledge a previous self in its fullness is associated with heightened development and increasing development over time" (King & Hicks, 2006, pp. 130–131).

"The individual must stop waiting "to go back to normal" and instead invest deeply in a new, foreign life. An appropriate metaphor here might be that of acculturation—to thrive in this new life, the person must adopt a new system of meaning and acknowledge new values while maintaining the capacity to see the value of one's old ways of being" . . . "the very level of investment that might contribute to the 'disequilibration' resulting from goal loss also makes it more likely the individual will grow through such experience" (King & Hicks, 2006, p. 131).

"It may be that dedication to commitments is an important aspect of maturity itself. Indeed, we suggest that the capacity to commit to goals, within the context of having experienced goal loss, may be the best expression of maturity. . . . The mature person is one who maintains the central notion that life does matter and that there is meaning in one's attachment to the events of the world" (King & Hicks, 2006, p. 133).

"Empirically, research shows consistently that higher levels of psychosocial maturity do not correlate with higher levels of well–being" (Bauer, Schwab, & McAdams, 2011, p. 121).
"In other words, on average, people who score at higher relative to lower stages of maturity are not more likely to score higher on measures of well–being" (Bauer, Schwab, & McAdams, 2011, p. 121).
"These studies provide preliminary evidence that the highest stage of ED [Ego Development] might involve higher levels of well–being and a more growth–oriented self–identity than other stages of ED. These studies suggest—again, in a preliminary way—an empirical portrait of optimal development that includes the capacities to think about one's life at a high level of complexity and integration, to feel good about one's life, and to identify closely with processes of both intellectual and experiential growth" . . . "To address the mystery that the highest stage of maturity might culminate in well–being, after stages and stages having no greater likelihood of well–being, we begin by considering two paths to well–being: the short road and the long road"
The short road. "This assessment boils down to being satisfied with what one has in life, a matter of matching expectations with perceived realities—regardless of how complexly or integratively one interprets those realities"
The long road. "changes in how the individual interprets his or her life may heighten or dampen one's average level of well–being. Perhaps the changes in how the individual interprets his or her life upon developing into the highest stage of ED help to heighten well–being" . . . "perhaps another path to happiness involves the long road of psychosocial maturity and self–actualizing. King (2001) calls this path 'the hard road to the good life' (p. 51), emphasizing the tendency for those of heightened maturity to acknowledge head–on rather than gloss over life's difficulties. The road is also long, as Integrated ED generally does not emerge before mid–life. (Bauer, Schwab, & McAdams, 2011, p. 130). "We propose that only after identifying with growth processes for some time—a tendency that emerges in the post conventional stages of ED (Loevinger, 1976)—can the individual who had not previously accepted his or her life as satisfactory gain enough experience to accept it eventually [italics added]" (Bauer, Schwab, & McAdams, 2011, p. 133).

Comment: the above article deserves further explanation. Using Loevinger's (1976) model, ego development is measured as a continuous variable involving a number of steps from impulsivity (less than 1% of the population), self protection (<10%), conformity (10%), self awareness (40%), conscientiousness (30%), individualism (10%), autonomy (<2%) and finally integration (<1%). Successive stages do not yield increasing levels of well–being compared to prior stages. Only when one achieves the final stage of integration does the research indicate a higher level of well–being and a more growth oriented self–identity. Also note the quote from page 133 italics added. The authors are saying that integration and happiness must entail acceptance of one's life as one has lived it, certainly the opposite conclusion of the process of maturation and development that Dąbrowski had in mind.

Comment: this article is not under the positive psychology umbrella per se. But it's interesting and pertains to Dąbrowski. "Two commonly held assumptions of research into personality development are that personality has "set like plaster" (James, as cited in Costa & McCrae, 1994, p. 21) and will not change much after the age of 30 and that adolescence is a period in which personality matures and becomes more stable" (Meeus, Van de Schoot, Klimstra, & Branje, 2011, p. 1181).
[resilients (R) characterized by high levels of ego–resiliency and moderate levels of ego–control and are able to adapt their levels of ego–control to environmental demands. Overcontrollers (O) and undercontrollers (U) have low levels of ego–resiliency and differ markedly on egocontrol. Overcontrollers maintain relatively inflexible levels of high ego–control, whereas undercontrollers have relatively inflexible levels of low ego–control.]
"The primary goal of Study 1 was to evaluate whether personality types are stable or whether there is a systematic personality change in the direction of resiliency during adolescence" (p. 1183). "we observed change of personality types in the direction of resiliency" (p. 1191).
"We also found substantial stability of personality, with 73.5% of the adolescents remaining in the same personality type between Waves 1 and 5. This finding shows that personality types are already quite stable in adolescence" (p. 1191).
"the resilient type indexes the most well–adjusted personality profile and is consistent with the findings of Study 2 showing that resilients are the least anxious and most capable of forming intimate relationships" (p. 1191). "the analyses of the personality type trajectories revealed that the majority of adolescents who change personality type across 5 years make only one transition. This makes clear that personality type changes tend to be decisive in adolescence and that probabilities of additional personality type changes are low" (p. 1192).
"We replicated the well–known finding that male adolescents more often tend to be undercontrollers, and female adolescents overcontrollers" (p. 1192).
"Stable resilients (R>R) were less anxious over time than were stable overcontrollers (O>O), and change from O>R was accompanied by a decrease in anxiety, whereas change from R>O was accompanied by an increase in anxiety" (p. 1192).
"these findings imply that overcontrol goes together with anxiety and an inability to enter into the world of social relationships. Additionally, moving out of overcontrol means leaving anxiety behind and being more able to grow into the social world" (p. 1192).
"The main conclusion of the research is that personality types mature in the direction of resiliency. This means that research into adolescent personality development has come full circle. Adolescent personality matures not only in terms of mean levels and stability of personality traits but also in terms of personality organization" (p. 1192).



20). Positive psychology and the American Army

See the special issue: American Psychologist, 66(1), 2011.

Seligman expanded the positive psychology concept to the United States Army in creating a program called "comprehensive soldier fitness," (Cornum, Matthews, & Seligman, 2011; Reivich, Seligman, & McBride, 2011; Seligman & Fowler, 2011). Seligman basically says that this is a tremendous opportunity to do research on the ideas of positive psychology with a database of millions of soldiers and then, if the principles are sound, they can be applied "to the civilian population" through medicine, education and other special programs.

Ever modest, Seligman is not content to contribute to the Army he wants to apply these ideas to change the practice of psychology, medicine and education. "As a large part of the Comprehensive Soldier Fitness program, positive psychology is meeting this need with new tests, with new fitness courses, and with resilience training. These developments may transform the practice of psychology and psychology's relation to medicine and education" (Seligman & Fowler, 2011, p. 82).

"The use of resilience training and positive psychology in the Army is consciously intended as a model for civilian use" (Seligman & Fowler, 2011, p. 85).

See the special issue: American Psychologist, 66(1), 2011.
This issue raised quite a bit of debate as follows:
Phipps, S. (2011). Positive psychology and war: An oxymoron. The American psychologist, 66(7), 641-2. doi:10.1037/a0024933
Krueger, J. I. (2011). Shock without awe. The American psychologist, 66(7), 642-3. doi:10.1037/a0025080
Eidelson, R., Pilisuk, M., & Soldz, S. (2011). The dark side of comprehensive soldier fitness. The American psychologist, 66(7), 643-4. doi:10.1037/a0025272
Quick, J. C. (2011). Missing: Critical and skeptical perspectives on comprehensive soldier fitness. The American psychologist, 66(7), 645. doi:10.1037/a0024841 Reply: Seligman, M. E. P. (2011). Helping American soldiers in time of war: Reply to comments on the comprehensive soldier fitness special issue. The American psychologist, 66(7), 646-7. doi:10.1037/a0025156

 Comment: in Seligman's reply, he indicates that his project is not research but rather, a training program. "CSF is not research. It has the same status as training programs that require all soldiers to attend classes about how to recognize signs of suicide and sexual harassment, to do morning physical training, how to resist psychologically when captured, orwhy to wear safety belts when driving. These programs do not require informed consent" (Seligman, 2011, p. 646). This is a weak argument, and perhaps even disingenuous, given that a major component of Seligman's platform was that this program would act as a staging ground involving validation of his tests and of the program. For example, Seligman and Fowler  (2011, p. 85) state: "We have worked in test creation and validation, in course creation, in writing and refining resilience and positive psychology training materials, and in serving as data analysts, as research designers, [italics added] and as the trainers and facilitators of live courses with Army personnel. Of critical interest is the Soldier Fitness Tracker (Fravell, Nasser, & Cornum, 2011, this issue). This powerful platform creates an unprecedented, hypermassive database in which psychological variables, medical variables, and performance variables are merged." "The validation of the GAT, the effects of the fitness courses, the effects of resilience and positive psychology training, and the efficacy of the master resilience trainers will all be carefully measured by the Army over the months and years to come" (Seligman & Fowler, 2011, p. 85). That's not research? Seligman seems to want to have it both ways, but can he?



21). Positive psychology and education

Sternberg (2004) suggests that intelligence, as measured by IQ, is increasing by about nine points per generation but that we have little to show for this ongoing increase. Sternberg also indicates that those with strong intelligence may not necessarily be wise: "smart people are especially susceptible to committing certain fallacies in their thinking that less intelligent people may be less likely to commit: (1) egocentrism—thinking that the whole world revolves around them; (2) omniscience—thinking they know everything; (3) omnipotence—thinking they can do whatever they want; and (4) invulnerability— thinking they can get away with anything" (Sternberg, 2004, p. 165). He therefore argues for an emphasis on and developing wisdom as part of the school curriculum.

Seligman is developing and advocating a positive education curriculum. "Positive education claims that teaching young people the skills of emotional fitness along with teaching the traditional goals of education will enable youth to perform better at school and to perform better later in the workplace. And, more important, perhaps these young people will enjoy lives that have more positive emotion, engagement, and meaning and better relationships" (Seligman, Ernst, Gillham, Reivich, & Linkins, 2009; Seligman & Fowler, 2011, p. 85).

"Positive education is defined as education for both traditional skills and for happiness" (Seligman, Ernst, Gillham, Reivich, & Linkins, 2009, p. 293).

"We conclude that, were it possible, well–being should be taught in school on three grounds: as an antidote to depression, as a vehicle for increasing life satisfaction, and as an aid to better learning and more creative thinking. Because most young people attend school, schools provide the opportunity to reach them and enhance their well–being on a wide scale" (Seligman, Ernst, Gillham, Reivich, & Linkins, 2009, p. 295).

Comment: in my opinion you have to read Seligman very closely, in the above quote he suggests that his conclusion is that positive education and well–being should be taught on the grounds that it is an antidote to depression. However, in the same article on page 302, appears this statement "The positive psychology programme did not improve other outcomes we measured, such as students' reports of their depression and anxiety symptoms, character strengths, and participation in extra–curricular activities."

Comment: I must say this certainly frightens me and reminds me of subliminal advertising. "GGS teachers and administrators have now begun the process of embedding Positive Education into most academic courses, on the sports field, in pastoral counselling, in music and in the chapel"

"If it turns out that soldiers given this training perform better in their jobs, are more engaged, have more meaning in their lives, enjoy better relationships, and have more fruitful employment when they return to civilian society, this will ground a new model for our public schools. Again we will know whether this is so within the next decade" (Seligman & Fowler, 2011, p. 85).

Hoy and Tarter (2011) summarize several positive psychology initiatives in schools including Snyder's hope theory, the idea of flow in schools involving student engagement and, positive adjustment in children. These articles are from a special issue of School Psychology Quarterly, 2003, 18 (2).

Hoy and Tarter (2011) offer suggestions about how to use positive psychology to refocus the study of educational organizations and educational administration. They call for sustained research on educational administration to expand our scope of knowledge to improve theory, research and practice in education. Topics for research might include "flow, resilience, positive deviance, zest, optimism, efficiency, engagement, hope, meaningfulness, altruism, tolerance, justice, vitality, and virtue" (Hoy & Tarter, 2011, p. 441).



22). Positive psychology and Neuroscience

See: http://www.posneuroscience.org/index.html The Positive Neuroscience Project was established in 2008 by Professor Martin E.P. Seligman, Director of the Penn Positive Psychology Center, with a generous grant from the John Templeton Foundation. In 2009, the project announced the Templeton Positive Neuroscience Awards competition to bring the tools of neuroscience to bear on advances in Positive Psychology. The project will grant $2.9 million in award funding to 15 new research projects at the intersection of Neuroscience and Positive Psychology.
– Virtue, strength, and positive emotion: What are the neural bases of the cognitive and affective capacities that enable virtues such as discipline, persistence, honesty, compassion, love, curiosity, social and practical intelligence, courage, creativity, and optimism?
– Exceptional abilities: What is special about the brains of exceptional individuals and what can we learn from them?
– Meaning and positive purpose: How does the brain enable individuals and groups to find meaning and achieve larger goals?
– Decisions, values, and free will: How does the brain enable decisions based on values and how can decision
–making be improved? What can neuroscience reveal about the nature of human freedom?
– Religious belief, prayer, and meditation: How do religious and spiritual practices affect neural function and behavior? Retrieved August 6, 2011 from http://www.posneuroscience.org/research–awards.html

"Research has shown that positive emotions and interventions can bolster health, achievement, and resilience, and can buffer against depression and anxiety. And while considerable research in neuroscience has focused on disease, dysfunction, and the harmful effects of stress and trauma, very little is known about the neural mechanisms of human flourishing. Creating this network of positive neuroscience researchers will change that." Seligman, Retrieved August 6, 2011 fromhttp://www.authentichappiness.sas.upenn.edu/newsletter.aspx?id=1545

See: The Laboratory for Affective Neuroscience. Retrieved August 6, 2011 from http://psyphz.psych.wisc.edu/web/index.html

"Using self–report and electrophysiological methods, we have demonstrated that dispositional PA [positive–affect] and an approach–oriented behavioral style, objectively measured using an index of asymmetric frontal function, separately contribute to two theoretically derived forms of well–being. We have further shown that left frontal activation predicts eudaimonic but not hedonic well–being when variation in dispositional PA is statistically controlled. Goal–relevant approach tendencies not captured by highly engaged PA may be more critical for attaining eudaimonic than hedonic well–being" (Urry, Nitschke, Dolski, Jackson, Dalton, Mueller, Rosenkranz, et al., 2004, p. 371).

"Anhedonia is a hallmark symptom of MDD [major depressive disorder] and elucidating the core neural signatures and processes of anhedonia is necessary for a more complete understanding and treatment of the disorder (29)" (Heller, Johnstone, Shackman, Light, Peterson, Kolden, Kalin, et al., 2009, p. 22448).

"MDD patients displayed abnormalities in distinct networks when regulating negative as opposed to positive affect. However, both studies found abnormalities in the PFC [prefrontal cortex]. The fact that in depression, the PFC appears to be abnormally engaged in both positive and negative emotion regulation contributes to a growing body of work that suggests that depressed patients may have difficulty recruiting prefrontal resources to regulate subcortical structures involved in affect" (Heller, Johnstone, Shackman, Light, Peterson, Kolden, Kalin, et al., 2009, p. 22448).

"Because NAcc activation has been linked to reward and motivation, training depressed individuals to sustain engagement with tasks which may activate the NAcc [nucleus accumbens] might be able to be used in clinical practice" (Heller, Johnstone, Shackman, Light, Peterson, Kolden, Kalin, et al., 2009, p. 22449).

"In conclusion, our findings suggest that individuals with depression suffer from an inability to sustain reward–related activity that is reflected in the fronto–striatal network across time, and that this deficit is associated with reduced positive affect. These findings are consistent with the hypothesis that the hallmark symptoms of anhedonia in MDD are based on an inability to sustain positive affect" (Heller, Johnstone, Shackman, Light, Peterson, Kolden, Kalin, et al., 2009, p. 22449).



23). Positive psychology and character strengths

VIA Classification of 24 Strengths and Virtues (Peterson & Seligman, 2004).

"The VIA distinguishes strengths from talents. Although this distinction is not clear-cut, talents are seen as belonging to a more innate and less voluntary domain. VIA also claims that strengths are morally valued across cultures, whilst talents are non-moral" (Boniwell, 2006, p. 83).


According to Clifton and Anderson (2001–2002) "strengths are produced when talents are refined with knowledge and skills. Strengths that are fully developed and applied appropriately result in achievement and excellence" (Boniwell, 2006, p. 86). A chart of 34 strengths identified by Clifton and Anderson are presented from Boniwell (2006, p. 87).


"Strengths of character and positive experiences such as a satisfied life are among the central concerns of positive psychology (McCullough & Snyder, 2000; Seligman, 2002). Character strengths can be defined as positive traits reflected in thoughts, feelings, and behaviors. They exist in degrees and can be measured as individual differences. We speculate that these are grounded in biology through an evolutionary process that selected for these predispositions toward moral excellence as means of solving the important tasks necessary for survival of the species (cf. Bok, 1995; Schwartz, 1994; Wright, 1994)" (Park, Peterson, & Seligman, 2004, pp. 603–604).

Comment: although the authors have stated their speculation that character strengths are "grounded in biology" they follow a theme of positive psychology in suggesting that all of these strengths can be taught and they go on to state: "We already know how to nurture gratitude (Miller, 1995) and hope (Gillham, Reivich, Jaycox, & Seligman, 1995; McDermott & Snyder,1999). Less clear is how to teach love, zest, or curiosity, although we do know some of their naturally occurring precursors . . ." (Park, Peterson, & Seligman, 2004, p. 617).

"We find that hope, zest, gratitude, curiosity, and love are most strongly associated with life satisfaction, and modesty and intellectual strength least so. To the extent that interventions strive to build life satisfaction, the strengths most robustly associated with well–being might be considered prime targets" (Park, Peterson, & Seligman, 2004, p. 617).

Classification of Character Strengths

Six classes of virtue (i.e., "core virtues") (Peterson and Seligman, 2004).

"Part of our project has entailed a systematic survey of deliberate interventions that encourage strengths of character. Here we describe what is known about the cultivation of these strengths of character, especially those that comprise wisdom" (Park & Peterson, 2009, p. 60).

"We assume that character strengths are individual differences with some stability and generality. However, we do not regard them as fixed or grounded in immutable biogenetic characteristics. In keeping with a premise of positive psychology, we further assume that good character is more than bad character negated or minimized. Character strengths must be studied and developed in their own right" (Park & Peterson, 2009, p. 60).

Criteria for a Character Strength

"Enabling factors are "naturally-occurring" features of the person or environment that make the strength more likely to occur. Societal institutions are existing social groups thought to encourage the strength among its members. Deliberate interventions refer to programs undertaken by psychologists, educators, and others with the explicit goal of building the strength. Taken together, these ideas provide for each strength a starting point for planning how to teach that strength" (Park & Peterson, 2009, p. 63).

"One nonetheless would probably want to emphasize some strengths rather than others in any deliberate attempt to cultivate good character. One's own values or those in an existing setting might dictate which character strengths are chosen as intervention targets, . . ." (Park & Peterson, 2009, p. 64).

"Besides happiness, strengths of character have quickly surfaced as one of the most popular subjects in positive psychology. Strengths have been defined as pre-existing qualities that reflect an authentic version of the self and, when used, are intrinsically desirable and energizing, thereby increasing the probability of healthy outcomes (Linley, 2008; Peterson & Seligman, 2004). In one of the foremost achievements in positive psychology, Peterson and Seligman created a catalog of strengths of character that are purported to be invariant across history and culture. Their efforts led to a final tally of 24 strengths and the creation of an extensive battery of assessment tools including a 240-item self-report questionnaire—Values in Action Inventory of Strengths (VIA-IS; Peterson & Seligman, 2004)" (Kashdan & Steger, 2011, p. 12).

"Going forward, researchers can assess strengths as situationally based judgments, behaviors, and reactions as a complement to a trait approach. That is, both the endorsement and use of strengths in a given moment can vary depending on what is happening in a given moment. Possessing strengths is not synonymous with using strengths" (Kashdan & Steger, 2011, pp. 12-13).



24). Seligman and positive psychology

Commentary: Some of the criticisms have been leveled at the manner in which Seligman has presented his ideas. For example, Seligman has largely introduced the area as if it was his single–handed creation and has overlooked the historical foundations of positive approaches to mental health and psychology preceding his contribution (Becker & Marecek, 2008; Cowen & Kilmer, 2002; Froh, 2004; Held, 2005).

Comment: Here is an example of Seligman's ego: "Finally, if psychology still exists in the year 3000 (the age of "knowing" by then could have given way to the age of "the known" or the species could be extinct), historians may look back to the January 2000 issue of the American Psychologist to assess progress. This millennial issue will be devoted to what we know about positive psychology." (Seligman, 1998c).

"Bizarre as it may sound, I believed that I had a mission, but I did not know what the mission was. I believed that if I found myself in the position of leading American psychology, I would discover my mission. And, in that role, I did. That mission was, and is, to help build positive psychology" (Seligman, 2003, p. xix).

"Martin E. P. Seligman, in his 1998 APA Presidential Address, is said to have introduced positive psychology to the American Psychological Association" (Froh, 2004, p. 18).

Wade (2005) wrote: "Now Seligman is famous again, this time for creating the field of positive psychology."

Comment: Based upon my reading, I could not agree with this comment more: "The current approach by the leader and founder of positive psychology, Martin Seligman, leaves it open to challenge and critique for offering a fool's gold in light of the complexity and unpredictability of much human behavior. Moreover, the founder's inflexible attitudes concerning what does and does not constitute knowledge production have resulted in a series of contradictions, because he and his new movement have become constrained by a dogmatic set of rules and regulations" (McDonald & O'Callaghan, 2008, 138).

"'To see this number of people here 10 years after Marty [Seligman] founded positive psychology is a remarkable achievement,' Ed Diener, a professor of psychology at the University of Illinois at Urbana– Champaign and president of the association, told the enthusiastic crowd. 'We've made huge inroads.' (Ruark, 2009, para. 2).

Inconsistencies in Seligman?

"We well recognize that positive psychology is not a new idea. It has many distinguished ancestors, and we make no claim of originality. However, these ancestors somehow failed to attract a cumulative, empirical body of research to ground their ideas" (Seligman & Csikszentmihalyi, 2000, p. 13).

Comment: However, it would see that Seligman is trying to make some sort of claim for originality, balanced only on the thin distinction between "health" and "psychology" we see in 2008 he is saying this: "I propose a new field: positive health. Positive health describes a state beyond the mere absence of disease and is definable and measurable. Positive health can be operationalised by a combination of excellent status on biological, subjective, and functional measures" (Seligman, 2008, p. 3).

Comment: Seligman was initially explicit about trying to create psychology outside of the health care system: "Can an economically viable profession of Positive psychology emerge outside the health care system?" (Seligman, 1998c, p. 2). Seligman derided psychology for becoming "a mere subfield of the health professions" as evidenced in this quotation: "The downside, however, was that the other two fundamental missions of psychology––making the lives of all people better and nurturing genius––were all but forgotten. It wasn't only the subject matter that was altered by funding, but the currency of the theories underpinning how psychologists viewed themselves. They came to see themselves as part of a mere subfield of the health professions, and psychology became a victimology" (Seligman & Csikszentmihalyi, 2000, p. 6). Then, perhaps to hedge his bets, in 2008 Seligman proposed to create a field of "positive health."

The origins of positive psychology:

The Nikki version:

Seligman tells the story over and over how he initially came up with the idea of positive psychology–talking about his daughter Nikki in the garden (Seligman & Csikszentmihalyi, 2000; Seligman, 2002a; Seligman, 2002b; Seligman, 2003). Somewhat confusingly, now, Seligman (2011) says: "The real way positive psychology got its start has been a secret until now" and goes on to relate how, in 1997, he got summoned to an anonymous philanthropic foundation and told by their lawyers that he had been called because "[you] are a winner" and, after a 10 minute presentation and a subsequent three page proposal, they proceeded to give him $1.5 million to start research on positive psychology. This time, although he describes in some detail choosing what shirt to wear, there is no mention of Nikki in his description.

The Hawaii version: Seligman as heroic lifeguard.

Seligman: "'Someone's yelling, daddy?' Lara, the most sharp-eared among us, said urgently, pointing toward the sea. Sure enough, down in the surf was a snowy-haired man, being pounded against the lava walls, razor sharp with barnacles, and then being tossed back out into the turbulence. He looked like a smaller and more unseaworthy version of Moby Dick, except for the blood on his chest and face and the single swim fin dangling from his left foot. I ran down and waded in. The thick rubber-soled shoes I had on made getting to him easy, but the fellow was big (quite a bit bigger than my 200 pounds), and lugging him out was not as simple.
When we finally made it back, through his panting, I could make out a cultivated middle-European accent.
When the last sputtering cough died, his St. Nicholas face exploded into the widest of smiles, and he gave me a big hug. We spent the next two days in unbroken conversation" (Seligman, 2002, p. 113).

Csikszentmihalyi: They meet on the beach

Csikszentmihalyi: "Ten years ago my wife and I (the first author) took a week off in the middle of winter and rented a tropical hut at a resort on the Big Island of Hawaii. After a few days, completely unexpectedly, I ran into a hearty fellow walking along the beach who introduced himself as Marty Seligman. Of course we knew about each other's work, and we had passed each other at conferences before, but we had never really had a chance to talk.
It turned out that Marty and his family were spending a week at the same resort we were. For the rest of our stay, at breakfast, lunch, and dinner, we exchanged ideas as to what we thought the future of psychology ought to be. This question was especially timely for Marty because the following year he was going to take over the presidency of the American Psychological Association, and he was thinking about the kind of legacy he would like to leave behind" (Csikszentmihalyi & Nakamura, 2011, p. 3)

Thomsen: "Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi was celebrating his thirty-fifth wedding anniversary on the Big Island of Hawaii in 1998. One afternoon, tired of the pool and the shallow water around the resort, he decided to swim out of the bay and into the ocean beyond. "The current took me, and with the big waves, pretty soon I was a half mile from the entrance to the bay," he recalls. "I got scared, because all there was were large, rough, black lava rocks on the shore. I swam to them, hoping to find a place to climb out, but the waves kept slamming me into the rocks. I was bloody all over. A couple of times I almost passed out." What happened next is subject to the variations of individual memory. Martin Seligman's memory is that he waded in to help rescue Csikszentmihalyi from the water. As Csikszentmihalyi remembers it, he was able to propel himself out of the sea despite "looking like raw hamburger." While he was staggering back to the resort on a small pathway, he recalls, a man approached him and offered to take him to the first aid station. "Halfway back he says to me, 'Aren't you Mike Csikszentmihalyi? I'm Marty Seligman.' We had met at a conference 20 years before." Whichever version is more accurate, what followed is clear: the two renowned psychologists spent the next couple of days in a nearly unbroken stream of conversation. Seligman was soon to begin his term as president of the American Psychological Association and was looking to leave a legacy. "I have recently decided we have devoted too much time to understanding the negative aspects of life," he confided. They talked about Csikszentmihalyi's work on flow—the psychology of optimal experience, the phenomenon that sometimes accompanies activities having the right balance of skill and challenge that people find completely engrossing. His study dovetailed nicely with Seligman's work on optimism and offered direction for research about human strengths, not merely focused on mental illness. Before they left the island, they had formed a partnership that would expand to include other likeminded professionals and bear fruit in a new direction for the discipline of psychology" (Thomsen, 2004, p. 14). "Seligman lauds Csikszentmihalyi as "the brains and historical anchor of the operation" in Positive Psychology, dubbing himself "the cheerleader."" (Thomsen, 2004, p. 15). [This is from the magazine of Claremont graduate University. Csikszentmihalyi is on faculty there. Marilyn Thomsen was the editor of the magazine when she wrote this article.]

Seligman (2011), also contains what would seem to be an inconsistency: the lawyers mentioned above e–mail him and ask him if the "Is the Mandela–Milosevic dimension a continuum?" Seligman says he then wrote a "scholarly and lengthy response" to the question. My problem is with the question in the first place. Ostensibly, from what I can see, Seligman introduced the "Mandela–Milosevic continuum" in a project he did on humane versus inhumane leadership. All of the references I can find to this always have the connotation of a continuum being associated with it so, it's a bit confusing why these "smart" lawyers would ask if it was a continuum. See: Humane Leadership Progress Report 2000

"As a society, our concern with damage has turned into a preoccupation with protecting our children. We cringe when we imagine our children failing and becoming immersed in self–doubt and hopelessness. The desire to protect is, in part, the basis for the self–esteem movement that emerged in California in the 1960s. This movement's primary goal is to bolster children's feelings of self– worth and insulate them from experiences that might shatter their self–confidence" (Gillham & Seligman, 1999, p. s166). Yet, after so clearly criticizing the idea of protection, just three pages later in the same article, Seligman says "For example, we might consider the skills and strengths that protect people from mental illness" (Gillham & Seligman, 1999, p. s169).

Psychology can fix most things: "At least 14 disorders, previously intractable, have yielded their secrets to science and can now be either cured or considerably relieved (Seligman, 1994)" (Seligman & Csikszentmihalyi, 2000, p. 6). Versus no, it can't: "It is a supplement, not a replacement, for the science and practice of relieving suffering. We believe that soldiers with PTSD, depression, anxiety, and other disorders should continue to receive the best of treatments. We are also mindful, however, that the known treatments are of limited effectiveness (Seligman, 1993, 2006) "(Seligman & Fowler, 2011, p. 86).

Self plagiarism

I am not an ethics expert but these days I notice more of an emphasis on self plagiarism, especially so if an author presents data or research results more than once. I'm not sure about the appropriateness of Seligman repeating large sections of his text word for word in various publications. For example, he tells the story about his daughter, Nikki, several times (Seligman & Csikszentmihalyi, 2000; Seligman, 2002a; Seligman, 2002b; Seligman, 2003)

Compare these two passages:
One: "Two personal stories, one told by each author, explain how we arrived at the conviction that a movement toward positive psychology was needed and how this special issue of the American Psychologist came about. For Martin E. P. Seligman, it began at a moment a few months after being elected president of the American Psychological Association: The moment took place in my garden while I was weeding with my five–year–old daughter, Nikki. I have to confess that even though I write books about children, I'm really not all that good with children. I am goal oriented and time urgent, and when I'm weeding in the garden, I'm actually trying to get the weeding done. Nikki, however, was throwing weeds into the air, singing, and dancing around. I yelled at her. She walked away, then came back and said, "Daddy, I want to talk to you." "Yes, Nikki?" "Daddy, do you remember before my fifth birthday? From the time I was three to the time I was five, I was a whiner. I whined every day. When I turned five, I decided not to whine anymore. That was the hardest thing I've ever done. And if I can stop whining, you can stop being such a grouch." This was for me an epiphany, nothing less. I learned something about Nikki, about raising kids, about myself, and a great deal about my profession. First, I realized that raising Nikki was not about correcting whining. Nikki did that herself. Rather, I realized that raising Nikki is about taking this marvelous strength she has––I call it "seeing into the soul"––amplifying it, nurturing it, helping her to lead her life around it to buffer against her weaknesses and the storms of life. Raising children, I realized, is vastly more than fixing what is wrong with them. It is about identifying and nurturing their strongest qualities, what they own and are best at, and helping them find niches in which they can best live out these strengths" (Seligman & Csikszentmihalyi, 2000, pp. 5–6).

Passage two: "The notion of a positive psychology movement began at a moment in time a few months after I had been elected president of the American Psychological Association. It took place in my garden while I was weeding with my 5– year–old daughter, Nikki. I have to confess that even though I write books about children, I'm really not all that good with them. I am goal oriented and time–urgent, and when I am weeding in the garden, I am actually trying to get the weeding done. Nikki, however, was throwing weeds into the air and dancing around. I yelled at her. She walked away, came back, and said, "Daddy, I want to talk to you." "Yes, Nikki?" "Daddy, do you remember before my fifth birthday? From the time I was three to the time I was five, I was a whiner. I whined every day. When I turned five, I decided not to whine anymore. That was the hardest thing I've ever" . . . ( Seligman, 2002b, p. 3).



25). Future issues facing positive psychology

"We now need to call for massive research on human strength and virtue. We need to develop a nosology of human strength— the "UNDSM–I", the opposite of DSM–IV. We need to measure reliably and validly these strengths. We need to do the appropriate longitudinal studies and experiments to understand how these strengths grow (or are stunted; Vaillant, 2000). We need to develop and test interventions to build these strengths" (Seligman, 2002b, p. 5).

"The future task of positive psychology is to understand the factors that build strengths, outline the contexts of resilience, ascertain the role of positive experiences, and delineate the function of positive relationships with others. Positive psychology needs to understand how all of these factors contribute to physical health, subjective well–being, functional groups, and flourishing institutions. Ultimately, positive psychology needs to develop effective interventions to increase and sustain these processes" (Gable & Haidt, 2005, p. 108).

"In all, then, there is an urgent need to move to a higher level of knowing concerning positive psychology, its implicit values and assumptions, and the culture from which it has sprung" (Christopher & Campbell, 2008, p. 692).

"We believe that positive psychology needs to broaden these concerns and address such questions as: What kind of a person is satisfied given the current state of the world? Where do we draw the boundary around the socio–political issues a positive psychology should address? What is our moral responsibility regarding the focus of the field when as many as half the children in the world go to bed hungry at night and dysentery is the leading cause of death? What is the role of positive psychology in cultivating outlooks, values, and lifestyles that are environmentally sustainable and stem the ongoing search for ever cheaper labor markets to exploit?" (Christopher & Hickinbottom, 2008, p. 565).

"Positive psychology requires a philosophy of social science that is robust enough to handle ontological, epistemological, and ethical/moral issues and move beyond both objectivism and relativism" (Christopher & Hickinbottom, 2008, p. 581).

In their important article, McNulty and Fincham (2011) make several recommendations for the future of positive psychology.
"First, psychologists need to move beyond examining the main effects of traits and processes that may promote well–being on average to study the factors that determine when, for whom, and to what extent those factors are associated with well–being"
"Our review suggests that the psychological characteristics that benefit people experiencing optimal circumstances may not only fail to help people experiencing suboptimal circumstances, [people seeking therapy] but may harm them"
"Second, to adequately capture the moderating role of various contextual factors, we need to study the implications of psychological characteristics in the context of both health and dysfunction and in the context of both happy and unhappy people"
"As our review makes clear, the processes that benefit people facing optimal circumstances can harm people facing suboptimal circumstances. Accordingly, understanding how to relieve suffering requires studying people who are suffering, and understanding how to prevent suffering requires studying people at risk for suffering"
"Third, researchers need to move beyond cross–sectional studies to examine the implications of psychological traits and processes over substantial periods of time"
[Fourth] "Specifically, as earlier critics of positive psychology have contended (e.g., Lazarus, 2003), psychologists need to move beyond labeling psychological traits and processes as positive. Continuing to do so imposes values on science that influence not only what we study but also what we predict and thus report"
"we argue that positive psychology needs to be thought of as just plain psychology before psychologists can have a fuller understanding of the complete human condition. That is, an understanding of the complete human condition requires recognizing that psychological traits and processes are not inherently positive or negative—whether they have positive or negative implications depends on the context in which they operate. Psychology is not positive or negative—psychology is psychology" (McNulty & Fincham, 2011, pp. 6–8).

"If positive psychology is going to progress at the scientific and applied level, context can no longer be underappreciated, ignored, and untreated" (Kashdan & Steger, 2011, p. 13).

"If we believe that strengths and well-being are dynamic, flexible, broad concepts, then our tools need to be sensitive to these dimensions (and global surveys are, by design, insensitive to time and context). If we believe that self-regulation often occurs outside of conscious awareness, then we are going to require non-obtrusive, implicit measures and not rely solely on face-valid, explicit measures" (Kashdan & Steger, 2011, p. 14).



26). Other approaches related to positive psychology

Jahoda's (1958) discussion of positive mental health featured what she viewed as six of its basic components: (a) positive self–attitudes; (b) wholesome growth, development and self–actualization; (c) integration– a central synthesizing psychological function; (d) the ability to function autonomously; (e) an accurate perception of reality; and (f) mastery of one's environment.

Self–Determination Theory (SDT) (Deci and Ryan, 1985): proposes that there are three basic needs; the need for autonomy, need for relatedness, and the need for competence, which are vital for well–being. SDT has been applied to work settings (e.g., Baard et al., 2004, Ilardi, et al., 1993). SDT suggests that higher support for autonomy in work settings would lead to higher degrees of need satisfaction and in turn higher well–being for employees.

"Subjective Well Being" theories (SWB) of happiness associated with Daniel Kahneman and with Ed Diener

"Diener, who has studied SWB for over a quarter century, argues "SWB includes diverse concepts ranging from momentary moods to global judgments of life satisfaction, and from depression to euphoria" (Diener, Scollon and Lucas, 2003, p.188). What SWB captures is the individual's own subjective assessment of his own life, and this assessment includes general satisfaction with one's life, satisfaction with specific domains of one's life, and the amounts of positive and negative emotion" (Jayawickreme, Pawelski, & Seligman, 2009, p. 21). In Diener's work, 'subjective well–being' is used synonymously with 'hedonic well–being.' Diener considers subjective well–being as the experience of high levels of pleasant emotions and moods, low levels of negative emotions and moods, and high life satisfaction.

The capability approach (Capabilities theory) to well–being: developed during the last two decades by Amartya Sen and Martha Nussbaum

Happiness Approach to well–being, by Richard Easterlin: The Easterlin Paradox is a key concept in happiness economics. Easterlin found that within a given country people with higher incomes are more likely to report being happy. However, in international comparisons the average reported level of happiness does not vary much with national income per person, at least for countries with income sufficient to meet basic needs. Similarly, although income per person rose steadily in the United States between 1946 and 1970, average reported happiness showed no long–term trend and declined between 1960 and 1970. The implication for government policy is that once basic needs are met, policy should focus not on economic growth or GDP, but rather on increasing life satisfaction or Gross national happiness (GNH). http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Easterlin_paradox See: (Easterlin, McVey, Switek, Sawangfa, & Zweig, 2010).

The Balanced Integration Differentiation (BID) Model (Imamoglu, 1998; 2003) proposes that individuational and relational orientations are distinct and complementary constructs which are essential for optimal human functioning. The model proposes four self construal types that vary along dimensions of individuational and relational orientations (Imamoglu 1998; 2003).

The broaden–and–build theory of positive emotions. Barbara L Fredrickson The broaden–and–build theory describes the form and function of a subset of positive emotions, including joy, interest, contentment and love. A key proposition is that these positive emotions broaden an individual's momentary thought–action repertoire: joy sparks the urge to play, interest sparks the urge to explore, contentment sparks the urge to savour and integrate, and love sparks a recurring cycle of each of these urges within safe, close relationships. The broadened mindsets arising from these positive emotions are contrasted to the narrowed mindsets sparked by many negative emotions (i.e. specific action tendencies, such as attack or flee). A second key proposition concerns the consequences of these broadened mindsets: by broadening an individual's momentary thought–action repertoire––whether through play, exploration or similar activities––positive emotions promote discovery of novel and creative actions, ideas and social bonds, which in turn build that individual's personal resources; ranging from physical and intellectual resources, to social and psychological resources. Importantly, these resources function as reserves that can be drawn on later to improve the odds of successful coping and survival.



27). Positive psychology as it relates to Dąbrowski.

In reviewing this material, several approaches relating to Dąbrowski were uncovered that I have not been familiar with before.

"Every individual seeks to assert himself, to be independent, to express himself in accordance with his own peculiar temperament. But the harsh world of reality, in the form of dangerous parental and social prohibitions, and the relentless right-of-way of objects, cannot be easily overcome. Problems and dangers which cannot be conquered oppose the individual. The unknown is feared. Security, warmth, protection, and dependence is longed for, sought for, and achieved - only to be repudiated by the incessant demand to express oneself, to dominate - and the pendulum starts its counterswing. One rebels at being dependent and secure, settled and safe. The urge to dominate, to express one's peculiar difference, to be an independent individual, reasserts itself. More prohibitions and other dangers are encountered giving rise to fear and the need for security and dependence. The pendulum repeats its arc although in a slightly different path directed by the ever new constellation of experience" (Cantor, 1941, p. 678).

"Most people achieve a working balance between the claims of self and society or reality which is discovered and rediscovered in the light of their own dynamic experience. The achievement is neither static nor gained without ceaseless struggle. The balance is constantly being shifted, redefined, and paid for at the cost of emotional disturbance to the self and to others" (Cantor, 1941, p. 678).

"When emotional stresses become too intense some individuals are unable to make normal adjustments. These deviating types become either creators or destroyers. Social maladjustment, that is, behaving differently from accepted normal standards, can assume creative forms in art, science, business, politics, religion, industry, or personal relations. In these instances the individual dares to be himself, he is unafraid to express is differences. He stands out because of his strength, the positive organization of his personality-pattern, and he is ready to accept the consequences of daring to be different" (Cantor, 1941, p. 682).

"Anyone who has achieved a satisfactory dynamic balance between the need for self-expression and the need for self-repression has a normal personality" (Cantor, 1941, p. 682).

"to properly consider optimal human being we must consider all the different levels, or facets, of a person—that is, the biochemical, neuronal, cognitive, personality, social, and cultural factors that each make unique contributions to human behavior" (Sheldon, 2004, p. viii).

"optimal personality functioning is not defined in terms of any particular constructs (i.e., via high self-esteem, self-regulation, self-actualization, subjective well-being, ego development, etc.), but rather is understood to be inclusive of a wide variety of such constructs. 5

Runyan supports the importance of psychobiography, a technique used by Dąbrowski and by positive psychologists. "The discussion is intended to raise basic issues encountered in applying personality theories to the life of a single individual, whether a historical figure, a research subject, or a clinical patient" (Runyan, 1981, p. 1070).

"the problem of developing explanations of events in individual lives deserves our critical attention as it is inevitably encountered in everyday life and is a crucial task within personology, psychobiography, and the clinical professions" (Runyan, 1981, p. 1076).

A philosophical dichotomy can be seen in approaches to individual development. Kendler (1999) differentiates a Newtonian approach to science assuming that valid knowledge of the material world can be known through the methods of natural science (positivism i.e., the degree to which phenomena could be positively or exactly determined) versus a more holistic approach that emphasized subjective experience and suggested the possibility of scientific discovery beyond a materialistic perspective, for example, including value judgments. Goethe and Hegel carried the latter interpretation forward to German intellectuals.

Kendler (1999) noted that the gestalt psychologists adopted this position and ultimately suggested psychology could use scientific facts to inform moral truth as shown in the works of Wundt and Kurt Goldstein. Goldstein subsequently influenced Maslow and his approach in perceiving the self as a central concept and in viewing the self as having potential for expansion and growth.

Maslow suggested that you could identify exemplars of development and study them scientifically to reveal their characteristics. Kendler (1999, p. 830) was sharply critical of this idea, saying, "Maslow shaped his evidence to create a tautological relationship between facts and values to give the impression that his values were justified by empirical data. He simply selected people who shared his moral code and his conception of fulfillment and thus assigned them the honorific status of being self-actualized."

Kendler (1999) goes on to build the case that the holistic approach in which human values can be informed by science is false. He is critical of the idea "that values inhere in human experience; they have the quality of objective requiredness. By perceiving one's own values as empirical facts, one is afforded a sense and direction in one's life" (Kendler, 1999, p. 830).

Kendler (1999) rejects the notion that we can move from what is by generating a conceptualization of what ought to be. "The argument that an enchanted view of science can reveal moral principles that are right for humankind fails to offer a coherent prescription as to how this goal is to be attained. The assumption that psychological facts will lead directly to moral truths is contradicted by the failure of is to logically generate ought. In addition, the premise that a monistic moral code exists that is 'right for humankind' is on equally shaky ground" (Kendler, 1999, p. 832).

Kendler (1999) notes that it is easy to conflate facts with values but difficult to keep them separate. "moral guidelines are needed in an ethically pluralistic society, but they cannot be set in stone. They require constant evaluation to determine their consequences so that the functional value of moral pluralism will not be endangered either by disruptive moral conflicts or by intolerant restrictions. One must realize that the delineation of moral boundaries in a pluralist society can be approached but never finalized. It must remain a work in progress! A continuous surveillance of the consequences of the guiding moral principles will be needed to elevate the acceptability and effectiveness of social policies" (Kendler, 1999, p. 832).

"The enchanted view of science, which assumes that values are embedded in facts, fails to meet standards of natural-science methodology. This limitation does not faze those psychologists who believe that their primary mission is to create a just society inhabited by fulfilled individuals" (Kendler, 1999, p. 831).

The issue of how we define mental health is part of Kendler's (1999) formulation. Should we define mental health positively or negatively? "Two obstacles prevent psychology from defining the good life. The first obstacle is the inability of facts to justify values logically, and the second is moral pluralism. The error made by those who preach a positive conception of mental health is that they believe a positive conception is symmetrical with a negative one. Their argument is that value judgments are made on each side. Although correct, the kind of value judgment made in each situation is strikingly different" (Kendler, 1999, p. 834). Kendler goes on to conclude that a negative conceptualization of mental health is necessary to serve the needs of society and meet the demands of science.


"it seems that the field of positive psychology (and perhaps psychology more generally) is in need of an integrative conceptual and empirical framework in which to a) conceptually unify diverse topics within positive psychology, and b) determine which positive psychology constructs are most essential for bringing about the various positive outcomes of interest. I will briefly describe the candidate model and approach offered in Optimal Human Being: An Integrated Multi-level Perspective (Sheldon, 2004). The model attempts to provide a framework for achieving consilience (Wilson, 1998) between the different levels of science; this must in principle be possible, because they are all operating within a singular, self-consistent reality" (Sheldon, 2011, p. 422). Comment: this approach is very reminiscent of Miller (1978) and his living systems theory. Miller's monumental 1978 book of over 1100 pages detailed the various levels and interactions of general systems theory applied to life. This approach might be contrasted with more specific descriptions of levels or developmental levels, either in psychology in general, or subsets thereof. For example, Jane Loevinger's stages of ego development, Jean Piaget's stages of cognitive development, Erik Erikson's developmental stages, or Lawrence Kohlberg's stages of moral development. Dąbrowski's levels fall in the latter category.

Sheldon uses his Multilevel Personality in Context (MPIC) model to examine subjective well-being (SWB) (Sheldon, Cheng, & Hilpert, 2011).


"We hope we have successfully reemphasized the point that multiple levels of analysis need to be simultaneously considered for a complete explanation of almost any human phenomenon, including the phenomenon of SWB. The MPIC model, representing the upper part of a more general causal hierarchy, was described. In the second part of the article we tried to show that much of what is already known about SWB can be contextualized within the MPIC model, as either level main effects or cross-level interactions" (Sheldon, Cheng, & Hilpert, 2011, p. 14).

"The MPIC model is not conceived of as a theory to be tested, but rather as a heuristic framework in which to consider "the biggest picture" (Sheldon, 2011, p. 52).

"Each level is thought to build on the provisions of all of the levels below, adding a new layer of organization on top. Cognitive processes could not exist without neural machinery, but once such machinery is present and functioning, cognitive processes emerge that make use of that machinery to derive pragmatic solutions to adaptive problems. Personality processes require cognitive processes, but once such exist, personality processes emerge to make use of cognitive processes to pursue the person's goals and needs" (Sheldon, 2011, p. 53).

McAdams notes that he has used the term "level" in many different and inconsistent ways and offers several important insights into the use of levels. (McAdams & Manczak, 2011).

"One of the features of hierarchical models that we find especially compelling is the way in which principles at lower levels constrain the operations of higher levels while higher levels reach back down to reorganize lower levels. Sheldon et al. (this issue) show a keen understanding of the interplay between reductionism and higher order emergence across levels" (McAdams & Manczak, 2011, p. 40).

"By the early 1990s, the once reviled concept of the dispositional trait had made an extraordinary comeback in personality psychology . . . [due to] mounting empirical evidence for longitudinal (interindividual) stability in trait scores . . . [the] evidence for stability was so strong that some psychologists began to wonder if personality itself can change in any meaningful way after, say, age 30" (McAdams & Manczak, 2011, p. 41).

McAdams' approach shows development over time: (1994) "McAdams argued that other features of what many psychologists consider to be personality—such as motives, coping strategies, values and interests, narrative self-conceptions, and so on—may reveal more change across the human life course. Whereas those relatively stable dispositional traits may reside at the first level of personality, McAdams (1994) claimed, motives and goals (and related personal concerns) seem to compose a second, more changeable level, and people's life stories (internalized and evolving narratives of the self that become increasingly prominent as features of human personality as people move into adulthood; McAdams, 1985) sit at a third" (McAdams & Manczak, 2011, p. 41).

McAdams (1995) "personality psychologists obtain a first cut of personality from a trait score. As we get to know people better, however, we move beyond traits to deeper levels of personality (e.g., motives, goals, life stories). The essential meaning here is a level of understanding . A deeper level is one where the perceiver knows more. With respect to person perception, then, traits lie on the surface (they are not deep), goals and motives reside further in, and a person's life story is deepest in the sense that it is harder to get at upon a casual meeting, requires more work to perceive in full" (McAdams & Manczak, 2011, p. 41).

"Because life stories are deeper in, are life stories more "authentic," more revealing of the "true self" than traits? (Answer: Some people think so, but we are not sure. We see the whole idea of "authenticity" and "true self" to be social and cultural constructions that have evolved out of an Emersonian streak of American Romanticism; McAdams, 2006)"(McAdams & Manczak, 2011, p. 42).

"dispositional traits, motives and goals (and related constructs), and life stories . . . Rather than thinking about these three features as levels in a strict hierarchy, therefore, we argue that they are best viewed as successively emerging layers of personality development" . . . "We begin life as social actors , endowed with the temperament tendencies that will eventually morph into the dispositional traits that so strongly shape social performance while also comprising the first layer of personality. A second layer begins to take form in the elementary school years, when children become self-consciously motivated agents who set forth goals, projects, and value-driven programs for their lives, and direct their behavior accordingly. As Layers 1 (dispositional traits; the self as actor) and 2 (personal goals and their motivational accouterments; the self as agent) continue to develop over time, a third layer eventually emerges (especially important under the aegis of cultural modernity; McAdams, 1996) when the young adult confronts the identity challenges of his or her society and begins to author a narrative identity. As we move through adulthood, personality continues to develop, with life stories layered over goals and motives, which are layered over dispositional traits. (McAdams & Manczak, 2011, p. 42).

"Personality begins with traits —the developmental foundation. Personal goals (goals that consistently differentiate you from me) emerge later, after the child has (a) developed the realization that people's behavior is largely motivated by internalized goals (theory of mind; Wellman, 1993) and (b) come to understand his or her own daily life in terms of choices made, intentions realized or thwarted, and success and failure in goal pursuit" (McAdams & Manczak, 2011, p. 42).

"a third layer of personality begins to emerge as young adults seek an identity in the world. As Erikson suggested, identity is an arrangement of the self that manages to provide adult life with some degree of unity and purpose. As a product of the self's desire to make meaning out of the complexities of adult life (especially as played out against the backdrop of a modern society), identity can come to include many different psychological qualities. But central to the identity quest in adulthood is the psychosocial construction of a life story. That story— [is] narrative identity" (McAdams & Manczak, 2011, p. 43).



C). Maslow 1954 Motivation and personality, chapter 18 and appendix



D). Bibliography



1). Special issues/special sections on positive psychology2000: American Psychologist, 55(1)



2). Books

Achor, S. (2010). The happiness advantage: The seven principles of positive psychology and performance at work. New York, NY: Crown.

Allport, G. W. (1961). Pattern and growth in personality. New York, NY: Holt, Rinehart & Winston.

Annas, J. (1993). The morality of happiness. New York, NY: Oxford.

Aspinwall, L. G., & Staudinger, U. M. (Eds.). (2003). A psychology of human strengths: Fundamental questions and future directions for a positive psychology. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.

Atherton, J., Graham, E., & Steedman, I. (Eds.). (2011). The practices of happiness: Political economy, religion and wellbeing. Oxon, England: Routledge.

Ben–Shahar, B. (2007). Happier: Learn the secrets to daily joy and lasting fulfillment. New York, NY: McGraw–Hill.

Ben–Shahar, B. (2009). The pursuit of perfect: How to stop chasing perfection and start living a richer, happier life. New York, NY: McGraw–Hill.

Biswas–Diener, R. (Ed.). (2011). Positive psychology as social change. New York, NY: Springer.

Biswas–Diener, R., & Dean, B. (2007). Positive psychology coaching: Putting the science of happiness to work for your clients.Hoboken, NJ: Wiley.

Boniwell, I. (2006). Positive psychology in a nutshell: A balanced introduction to the science of optimal functioning (2nd ed. Rev. ed.). London, England: PWBC.

Brdar, I. (Ed.). (2011). The human pursuit of well–being: A cultural approach. New York, NY: Springer.

Bruni L., Comim, F., & Pugno M. (Eds.). (2008). Capabilities and happiness. New York, NY: Oxford.

Bruni L., & Pugno M. (Eds.). (2005). Economics and happiness: Framing the analysis. New York, NY: Oxford.

Burns, D. D. (1999). The feeling good handbook (Rev. ed.). New York, NY: Penguin.

Burns, G. W. (Ed.). (2010). Happiness, healing, enhancement: Your casebook collection for applying positive psychology in therapy.Hoboken, NJ: Wiley.

Cameron, K. S., Dutton, J. E., & Quinn, R. E. (Eds.). (2003). Positive organizational scholarship: Foundations of a new discipline. San Francisco, CA: Berrett–Koehler.

Carr, A. (2004). Positive psychology: The science of happiness and human strengths. New York, NY: Brunner–Routledge.

Compton, W. C. (2005). An introduction to positive psychology. Belmont, CA: Thompson–Wadsworth.

Conoley, C. W., & Conoley, J. C. (2009) Positive psychology and family therapy: Creative techniques and practical tools for guiding change and enhancing growth. Hoboken, NJ: Wiley.

Corrie, S. (2009). The art of inspired living: Coach yourself with positive psychology. London: Karnac

Csikszentmihalyi, M. (2003). Good business: Leadership, flow, and the making of meaning. New York, NY: Viking.

Csikszentmihalyi, M., & Csikszentmihalyi, I. S. (Eds.). (2006). A life worth living: Contributions to positive psychology. New York, NY: Oxford.

Diener, E. (2009). Assessing well–being: The collected works of Ed Diener. Social Indicators Research Series, Volume 39. The Netherlands, Springer.

Diener, E. (2009). Culture and well–being:The collected works of Ed Diener. Social Indicators Research Series, Volume 38. The Netherlands: Springer

Diener, E. (2009). The science of well–being: The collected works of Ed Diener. Social Indicators Research Series, Volume 37. The Netherlands: Springer.

Diener, E., & Biswas–Diener, R. (2008). Happiness: Unlocking the mysteries of psychological wealth. Malden MA: Blackwell.

Diener, E., Helliwell, J. F., & Kahneman, D. (Eds.). (2010). International differences in well-being. New York, NY: Oxford.

Donaldson, S. I., Csikszentmihalyi, M., & Nakamura, J. (Eds.). (2011). Applied positive psychology: Improving everyday life, health, schools, work, and society. New York, NY: Routledge.

Driver, M. (2011). Coaching positively: Lessons for coaches from positive psychology. Berkshire, England: Open University Press.

Ehrenreich, B. (2009).Bright–sided: How the relentless promotion of positive thinking has undermined America. [English title: Smile or die: How positive thinking fooled America and the world] New York, NY: Henry Holt.

Eid, M., & Larsen, R. J. (Eds.). (2008). The science of subjective well–being. New York, NY: Guilford.

Franklin, S. S. (2010). The psychology of happiness: A good human life. New York, NY: Cambridge University.

Fredrickson, B. (2009). Positivity: Groundbreaking research reveals how to embrace the hidden strength of positive emotions, overcome negativity, and thrive. New York, NY: Crown.

Garbarino, J. (2011). The positive psychology of personal transformation: Leveraging resilience for life change. New York, NY: Springer.

Gardner, H., Csikszentmihalyi, M., & Damon, W. (2001). Good work: When excellence and ethics meets. New York, NY: Basic.

Gentry, W. D. (2008). Happiness for dummies.Hoboken, NJ: Wiley.

Gilbert, D. (2006). Stumbling on Happiness. Toronto, Canada: Vintage.

Gillham, J. E. (Ed.). (2000). The science of optimism and hope: Research essays in honor of Martin E. P. Seligman. Philadelphia, PA: Templeton Foundation.

Gilman, R., Huebner, E. S., & Furlong, M. J. (2009). Handbook of positive psychology in the schools. New York, NY: Routledge.

Graham, C. (2011). The pursuit of happiness: An economy of well-being. Washington, DC: Brookings Institution Press.

Haidt, J. (2005). The happiness hypothesis. New York, NY: Basic.

Hefferon, K., & Boniwell, I. (2011). Positive psychology: Theory, research and applications. Maidenhead Berkshire, England: Open University Press.

Jahoda, M. (1958). Current concepts of positive mental health. New York, NY: Basic.

Joseph, S., & Linley, P. A. (Eds.). (2008). Trauma, recovery and growth: Positive psychological perspectives on posttraumatic stress. Hoboken, NJ: Wiley.

Kets de Vries, M. F. R. (2009). Sex, money, happiness, and death: The quest for authenticity. Basingstoke, England: Palgrave Macmillan.

Keyes, C. L. M., & Haidt, J. (Eds.). (2003). Flourishing: Positive psychology and the life well lived.Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.

Levine, M. (2000). The positive psychology of Buddhism and Yoga: Paths to a mature happiness. Mahwah, NJ: Erlbaum. Buddhism and Yoga are the quintessential positive psychologies. Indeed, they provide the intellectual framework for such a psychology.

Lewis, S. (2011). Positive psychology at work: How positive leadership and appreciative inquiry create inspiring organizations. Malden, MA: Wiley-Blackwell

Linley, P. A., & Joseph, S. (Eds.). (2004) Positive psychology in practice. Hoboken, NJ: Wiley.

Lopez, S. J. (Ed.). (2008). Positive psychology: Exploring the best in people. (Vols. 1–4). Westport, CT: Praeger. [Volume 1: Discovering human strengths; Volume 2: Capitalizing on emotional experience; Volume 3: Growing in the face of adversity: Volume 4: Pursuing human flourishing.]

Lopez, S. J. (Ed.).(2009). The encyclopedia of positive psychology. Malden, MA: Blackwell.

Lopez, S. J., & Snyder, C. R. (2004). Positive psychological assessment: A handbook of models and measures. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.

Lyubomirsky, S. (2008).The how of happiness: A scientific approach to getting the life you want. New York, NY: Penguin.

Magyar–Moe, J. (2009). Therapist's guide to positive psychological interventions.New York, NY: Elsevier

Marar, Z. (2003). The happiness paradox. London, England: Reaktion.

Maslow, A. H. (1954). Motivation and personality. New York, NY: Harper.

Maslow, A. (1965a). A philosophy of psychology: The need for a mature science of human nature. In F. Severin (Ed.), Humanistic viewpoints in psychology(pp. 17–33). New York, NY: McGraw–Hill.

Maslow, A. H. (1965b). Eupsychian management: A journal. Homewood, IL: R. D. Irwin,

Maslow, A. H. (1970). Motivation and personality (2nd ed.). New York, NY: Harper & Row.

Maslow, A. H. (1987). Motivation and Personality. (3rd ed. Rev by Cynthia McReynolds. Added material by Ruth Cox.) New York, NY: HarperCollins

McMahon, D. W. (2005). Happiness: A history. New York, NY: Atlantic Monthly.

Nettle, D. (2005). Happiness: The science behind your smile. New York, NY: Oxford.

Ong, A. D., van Dulmen, M. H M. (2006). Oxford handbook of methods in positive psychology. Oxford, England: Oxford University.

Peterson, C. (2006). Primer in positive psychology. New York, NY: Oxford.

Peterson, C., & Seligman, M. E. P. (2004). Character strengths and virtues: A handbook and classification. Oxford, England: Oxford University

Quilliam, S. (2003). Positive thinking. London, England: Dorling Kindersley.

Rubin, G. (2009). The happiness project: Or, why I spent a year trying to sing in the morning, clean my closets, fight right, read Aristotle, and generally have more fun. New York, NY: HarperCollins.

Russell, D. C. (2005). Plato on pleasure and the good life. New York, NY: Oxford.

Schumaker, J. F. (2007). In search of happiness: Understanding an endangered state of mind. Westport, CT: Praeger

Schmuck, P., & Sheldon, K. M. (Eds.). (2001). Life goals and well–being: Towards a positive psychology of human striving. Seattle, WA: Hogrefe & Huber.

Seligman, M. E. P. (1991). Learned optimism. New York, NY: Knopf.

Seligman, M. E. P. (1994). What you can change and what you can't. New York, NY: Knopf.

Seligman, M. E. P. (2002a). Authentic happiness: Using the new positive psychology to realize your potential for lasting fulfillment. New York, NY: Free Press/Simon and Schuster.

Seligman, M. E. P. (2011). Flourish: A visionary new understanding of happiness and well–being.New York, NY: Free Press. In a fascinating evolution of thought and practice, Flourish refines what Positive Psychology is all about. While certainly a part of well–being, happiness alone doesn't give life meaning. Seligman now asks, What is it that enables you to cultivate your talents, to build deep, lasting relationships with others, to feel pleasure, and to contribute meaningfully to the world? In a word, what is it that allows you to flourish? "Well–being" takes the stage front and center, and Happiness (or Positive Emotion) becomes one of the five pillars of Positive Psychology, along with Engagement, Relationships, Meaning, and Accomplishment—or PERMA, the permanent building blocks for a life of profound fulfillment.

Sheldon, K. M. (2004). Optimal human being: An integrated multi–level perspective. Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum.

Sheldon, K. M., Kashdan, T. B., & , M. F. (Eds.). (2011). Designing positive psychology: Taking stock and moving forward. New York, NY: Oxford.

Snyder, C. R., & Lopez, S. J. (2002). Handbook of positive psychology. New York, NY: Oxford University.

Snyder, C. R., & Lopez, S. J. (2007). Positive psychology: The scientific and practical explorations of human strengths. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.

Snyder, C. R., Lopez, S. J., & Pedrotti, J. T. (2010). Positive psychology: The scientific and practical explorations of human strengths (2nd ed.). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.

Uhl, A. (2008). The complete idiots guide to the psychology of happiness. New York, NY: Alpha.

Vernon, M. (2008). 42: Deep thought on life. Oxford, England: Oneworld.

White, N. (2006). A brief history of happiness. Malden, MA: Blackwell.



3). General Bibliography

Abi–Hashem, N. (2001). Rediscovering hope in American psychology. American Psychologist. doi:10.1037//0003–066X.56.1.85. Comments on the special issue of the American Psychologist (2000[Jan], Vol 55[1]) on positive psychology. N. Abi–Hashem states that it is refreshing to see the current attempts to rediscover contentment and courage and to reemphasize the place of hope, the role of wisdom, and the importance of purpose in the lives of individuals and communities alike.

Achor, S. (2010). The happiness advantage: The seven principles of positive psychology and performance at work. New York, NY: Crown.

Adler, M., & Posner, E. A. (2008). Happiness research and cost-benefit analysis [Special issue]. The Journal of Legal Studies, 37(S2), S253–S292. doi:10.1086/590188. A growing body of research on happiness or subjective well-being (SWB) shows, among other things, that people adapt to many injuries more rapidly than is commonly thought, fail to predict the degree of adaptation and hence overestimate the impact of those injuries on their SWB, and, similarly, enjoy small or moderate rather than significant changes in SWB in response to significant changes in income. Some researchers believe that these findings pose a challenge to cost-benefit analysis and argue that project evaluation decision procedures based on economic premises should be replaced with procedures that directly maximize SWB. This view turns out to be wrong or, at best, premature. Cost-benefit analysis remains a viable decision procedure. However, some of the findings in the happiness literature can be used to generate valuations for cost-benefit analysis where current approaches have proved inadequate.

Ahmed, M., & Boisvert, C. M. (2006). Using positive psychology with special mental health populations. The American psychologist, 61(4), 333–5. doi:10.1037/0003–066X.61.4.333. In our clinical practice, we have attempted to use a positive psychology approach in working with people with schizophrenia and youths with behavioral disorders. We present three clinical applications that use a positive psychology approach with these populations: group treatment with persons with schizophrenia; individual cognitive stimulation therapy with persons with schizophrenia; and computer–facilitated dialogue and therapy with persons with schizophrenia and adolescents with behavioral disorders. These three clinical applications using positive psychology are consistent with those traditional treatment goals that aim to increase clients' functioning and improve their quality of life. Given that many people with long–standing emotional "problems" have difficulties initiating change or internalizing feedback regarding their behavioral deficits, the therapeutic environment and clinical interactions need to focus equally on clients' strengths and skills.

Aknin, L. B., Dunn, E. W., & Norton, M. I. (2011). Happiness Runs in a Circular Motion: Evidence for a Positive Feedback Loop between Prosocial Spending and Happiness. Journal of Happiness Studies. doi:10.1007/s10902-011-9267-5 We examine whether a positive feedback loop exists between spending money on others (i.e. prosocial spending) and happiness. Participants recalled a previous purchase made for either themselves or someone else and then reported their happiness. Afterward, participants chose whether to spend a monetary windfall on themselves or someone else. Participants assigned to recall a purchase made for someone else reported feeling significantly happier immediately after this recollection; most importantly, the happier participants felt, the more likely they were to choose to spend a windfall on someone else in the near future. Thus, by providing initial evidence for a positive feedback loop between prosocial spending and well-being, these data offer one potential path to sustainable happiness: prosocial spending increases happiness which in turn encourages prosocial spending.

Albee, G. W. (1982). Preventing psychopathology and promoting human potential. American Psychologist, 37(9), 1043–50. doi:10.1037/0003–066X.37.9.1043. Discusses primary prevention of mental and emotional disturbances, which emphasizes the reduction of unnecessary stress, including powerlessness and the enhancement of social competence, self–esteem, and support networks. This approach holds that it is possible to reduce the incidence of mental and emotional disorders. It argues that one–to–one psychotherapy is a hopeless approach because of the unbridgeable gap between the large numbers in need and the small numbers of helpers. Further, it holds that chemical or organic treatment is a reactionary form of symptomatic relief that is part of a long history of oppression and failure.

Albuquerque, I., Lima, M. P., Matos, M., & Figueiredo, C. (2011). Personality and Subjective Well-Being: What Hides Behind Global Analyses? Social Indicators Research, 105, 447-460. doi:10.1007/s11205-010-9780-7 The relation between personality and subjective well-being (SWB) remains involved in a considerable ambiguity and the numerous studies conducted have neglected an approach at a more detailed level of analysis. This study explores the idea that neuroticism, extraversion and conscientiousness facets predict differentially each SWB component. A battery of self-report questionnaires was used to assess personality and SWB in 398 teachers of primary and high schools. Findings of a cross-sectional study showed that neuroticism, extraversion and conscientiousness facets contributed to significantly explain the variance in positive affect, negative affect and life satisfaction. Moreover, these facets predicted differentially each of the three SWB components. At same time, this study corroborates two important premises: the specificity of facets as discrete traits and the independence of the three SWB components.

Algoe, S. B., & Fredrickson, B. L. (2011). Emotional fitness and the movement of affective science from lab to field. The American Psychologist, 66(1), 35–42. doi:10.1037/a0021720 Emotions provide a ubiquitous and consequential backdrop to daily life, influencing everything from physiology to interpersonal relationships in the blink of an eye. Instances of emotional experience accumulate and compound to impact overall mental and physical health. Under optimal conditions, emotions are adaptive for the successful navigation of daily life. However, situational features of military life likely amplify everyday emotions and their impact, creating the need for soldiers to have a well–oiled emotional resilience system in place from the start, to be maintained throughout their careers. Basic research in affective science has identified the active ingredients that would be required in order for such a system of skills and abilities to have maximum impact on overall emotional fitness. Results of this emotional resilience training may provide compounding benefits for the individual as well as have spreading impact for the benefit of the military unit and other social connections. The Comprehensive Soldier Fitness initiative highlights important new frontiers in affective science and presents a challenge to our field that requires taking a second look at the theory–testing process.

Algoe, S. B., & Haidt, J. (2009). Witnessing excellence in action: The "other–praising" emotions of elevation, gratitude, and admiration. The journal of positive psychology, 4(2), 105–127. doi:10.1080/17439760802650519. People are often profoundly moved by the virtue or skill of others, yet psychology has little to say about the 'other–praising' family of emotions. Here we demonstrate that emotions such as elevation, gratitude, and admiration differ from more commonly studied forms of positive affect (joy and amusement) in many ways, and from each other in a few ways. The results of studies using recall, video induction, event–contingent diary, and letter–writing methods to induce other–praising emotions suggest that: elevation (a response to moral excellence) motivates prosocial and affiliative behavior, gratitude motivates improved relationships with benefactors, and admiration motivates self–improvement. Mediation analyses highlight the role of conscious emotion between appraisals and motivations. Discussion focuses on implications for emotion research, interpersonal relationships, and morality.

Allport, G. W. (1961). Pattern and growth in personality. New York, NY: Holt, Rinehart & Winston.

Andersen, S. M., Chen, S., & Carter, C. (2000). Commentaries on "the 'what' and 'why' of goal pursuits: Human needs and the self–determination of behavior." Psychological Inquiry, 11(4), 269–318. doi:10.1207/S15327965PLI1104_02.

Anderson, C., Kraus, M. W., Galinsky, A. D., & Keltner, D. (2012). The Local-Ladder Effect: Social Status and Subjective Well-Being. Psychological science, (May). doi:10.1177/0956797611434537 Dozens of studies in different nations have revealed that socioeconomic status only weakly predicts an individual's subjective well-being (SWB). These results imply that although the pursuit of social status is a fundamental human motivation, achieving high status has little impact on one's SWB. However, we propose that sociometric status-the respect and admiration one has in face-to-face groups (e.g., among friends or coworkers)-has a stronger effect on SWB than does socioeconomic status. Using correlational, experimental, and longitudinal methodologies, four studies found consistent evidence for a local-ladder effect: Sociometric status significantly predicted satisfaction with life and the experience of positive and negative emotions. Longitudinally, as sociometric status rose or fell, SWB rose or fell accordingly. Furthermore, these effects were driven by feelings of power and social acceptance. Overall, individuals' sociometric status matters more to their SWB than does their socioeconomic status.

Anderson, D. R., & Lally, R. (2004, Summer). Endurance sport. Streams of William James, 6(2), 17-21. Retrieved from http:// williamjamesstudies.org /streams.html

Annas, J. (1993). The morality of happiness. New York, NY: Oxford.

Annas, J. (2004). Happiness as achievement. Daedalus, 133(2), 44-51. doi:10.1162/001152604323049389

Ardelt, M. (2009). Are older adults wiser than college students? A comparison of two age cohorts [Special issue]. Journal of Adult Development, 17(4), 193–207. doi:10.1007/s10804–009–9088–5. This study examined whether (a) older adults are wiser than college students, (b) college–educated older adults are wiser than current college students, and (c) wise older adults show evidence of personal growth. Using a sample of 477 undergraduate college students and 178 older adults (age 52+), results showed that college students tended to score as high on the self–administered three–dimensional wisdom scale (3D–WS) as older adults. However, college–educated older adults tended to score significantly higher on the reflective and affective dimensions of wisdom and the overall score of the 3D–WS and than did current college students. Qualitative evidence suggests that many older adults, particularly in the top 20% of wisdom scorers, grew wiser with age by learning from life experiences. The results indicate that wisdom might increase with age for individuals with the opportunity and motivation to pursue its development.

Aspinwall, L. G., & Staudinger, U. M. (Eds.). (2003). A psychology of human strengths: Fundamental questions and future directions for a positive psychology. Washington: American psychological Association.

Aspinwall, L. G., & Tedeschi, R. G. (2010). Of babies and bathwater: a reply to Coyne and Tennenʼs views on positive psychology and health. Annals of behavioral medicine, 39(1), 27–34; discussion 35–42. doi:10.1007/s12160–010–9155–y. We disagree with several conclusions reached by Coyne and Tennen, as well as their interpretation of specific findings.

Aspinwall, L. G., & Tedeschi, R. G. (2010). The value of positive psychology for health psychology: progress and pitfalls in examining the relation of positive phenomena to health. Annals of behavioral medicine, 39(1), 4–15. doi:10.1007/s12160–009–9153–0. The growth of the "positive psychology" movement reflects increased scientific and lay interest in the relation of positive phenomena to mental and physical health and the corresponding potential for interventions that promote positive feelings, thoughts, and experiences to improve health and well–being. In this article, we (1) consider research on optimism, sense of coherence, and posttraumatic growth that predates the contemporary emphasis on positive psychology, but has clear and increasingly well–supported connections to health psychology, (2) examine several potential mechanisms through which such positive phenomena may influence the etiology, progression, and management of illness, (3) identify four pervasive but misleading assumptions about positive phenomena that may limit both scientific research and practical application, and (4) caution against serious pitfalls of popular views of positive thinking, such as its promotion as a cure for cancer and other diseases. We conclude with recommendations for the balanced scientific investigation and application of positive phenomena.

Atherton, J., Graham, E., & Steedman, I. (Eds.). (2011). The practices of happiness: Political economy, religion and wellbeing. Oxon, England: Routledge. There is growing evidence that rising levels of prosperity in Western economies since 1945 have not been matched by greater incidences of reported wellbeing and happiness. Indeed, material affluence is often accompanied instead by greater social and individual distress. A growing literature within the humanities and social sciences is increasingly concerned to chart not only the underlying trends in recorded levels of happiness, but to consider what factors, if any, contribute to positive and sustainable experiences of wellbeing and quality of life. Increasingly, such research is focusing on the importance of values and beliefs in human satisfaction or quality of life; but the specific contribution of religion to these trends is relatively under-examined. This unique collection of essays seeks to rectify that omission, by identifying the nature and role of the religious contribution to wellbeing.

Augusto–Landa, J. M., Pulido–Martos, M., & Lopez–Zafra, E. (2010). Does perceived emotional intelligence and optimism/pessimism predict psychological well–being? Journal of Happiness Studies, 12(3), 463–474. doi:10.1007/s10902–010–9209–7. In this study we examined the associations between perceived emotional intelligence, dispositional optimism/pessimism and psychological well–being. In addition to correlational analyses, we examined a model by structural equation modeling (SEM). The study of psychological well–being in the field of positive psychology from the paradigmatic approach to happiness developed by Ryff and Singer (Psychother Psychosomat 65(1):14–23, 1998) is very important and essential, due in part to the lack of studies analyzing the predictors of Ryff's PWB model by contemplating emotional and cognitive factors. In this framework, our study examines the possible role of optimism and PEI as possible predictors of the psychological well–being dimensions proposed by Ryff, with a specific pattern of relationships as a model. Our results show positive relationships between clarity and emotional regulation and the psychological well–being components. With regard to dispositional optimism versus pessimism, positive relationships were found between optimism and psychological well–being dimensions and negative relationships between pessimism and dimensions of psychological well–being. Our model also includes some relationships, not initially raised, between the dimensions of perceived emotional intelligence and some dimensions of psychological well–being. Our results suggest relationships between emotional attention and purpose in life as well as with personal growth dimensions of psychological well–being. Implications and limitations are discussed.

Avey, J. B., Avolio, B. J., Crossley, C. D., & Luthans, F. (2009). Psychological ownership: Theoretical extensions, measurement and relation to work outcomes. Journal of Organizational Behavior, 30(2), 173–191. doi:10.1002/job.583.Viewing psychological ownership as a positive resource for impacting human performance in organizations, the present study investigated the components of an expanded view of psychological ownership. Confirmatory factor analyses on a proposed measure of psychological ownership provided support for a positively–oriented, ''promotion–focused'' aspect of psychological ownership comprised of four dimensions: self–efficacy, accountability, sense of belongingness and self–identity. In addition, territoriality was examined as a unique and more ''prevention–focused'' form of ownership. Practical implications and suggestions for future research on psychological ownership and positive organizational behavior conclude the article.

Avolio, B., & Gardner, W. (2005). Authentic leadership development: Getting to the root of positive forms of leadership. The Leadership Quarterly, 16(3), 315–338. doi:10.1016/j.leaqua.2005.03.001. This Special Issue is the result of the inaugural summit hosted by the Gallup Leadership Institute at the University of Nebraska–Lincoln in 2004 on Authentic Leadership Development (ALD). We describe in this introduction to the special issue current thinking in this emerging field of research as well as questions and concerns. We begin by considering some of the environmental and organizational forces that may have triggered interest in describing and studying authentic leadership and its development. We then provide an overview of its contents, including the diverse theoretical and methodological perspectives presented, followed by a discussion of alternative conceptual foundations and definitions for the constructs of authenticity, authentic leaders, authentic leadership, and authentic leadership development. A detailed description of the components of authentic leadership theory is provided next. The similarities and defining features of authentic leadership theory in comparison to transformational, charismatic, servant and spiritual leadership perspectives are subsequently examined. We conclude by discussing the status of authentic leadership theory with respect to its purpose, construct definitions, historical foundations, consideration of context, relational/processual focus, attention to levels of analysis and temporality, along with a discussion of promising directions for future research.

Azar, B. (2011). Positive psychology advances, with growing pains. Monitor on Psychology, 42(4), 32–36. This article discusses how positive psychology is moving ahead fast and is finding its way into therapy, schools, businesses, and even the Army. The article illuminates on how some might feel that this branch of psychology is moving too fast. The article concludes with the future of the field of positive psychology hangs in the balance of what the research shows.

Bacigalupe, G. (2001). Is positive psychology only White psychology? American Psychologist, 56(1), 82-83. doi:10.1037//0003-066X.56.1.82b

Bacon, S. F. (2005). Positive psychology's two cultures [Special issue]. Review of General Psychology, 9(2), 181–192. doi:10.1037/1089–2680.9.2.181. The rise of positive psychology has contributed to the scientific study of human strengths and virtues. This article identifies two types of character strengths: focus strengths, exemplified by creativity, and balance strengths, exemplified by wisdom. Which type we pursue influences how we organize our personal and professional lives, including choices about what we do, where we do it, and what values we promote as professional practitioners, researchers, and teachers. G. A. Kimble (1984) identified two cultures of psychology based on members' commitments to scientific or humanistic values. In a similar manner, two cultures of positive psychology, defined by the focus–balance distinction, are suggested here. Additional implications of the focus–balance distinction are discussed.

Baker, J., Dilly, L. J., Aupperlee, J. L., & Patil, S. (2003). The developmental context of school satisfaction: schools as psychologically healthy environments [Special issue]. School Psychology Quarterly, 18(2), 206–221. doi:10.1521/scpq. A positive psychology perspective on school psychology challenges us to think critically about the degree to which schools and schooling processes support children's optimum adjustment. We argue that schools contribute to a student's positive adjustment when they function as psychologically healthy environments for development. In this narrative review, we examine contemporary perspectives on positive adjustment in children and propose a developmental–ecological perspective as one theoretical lens through which to view positive school adjustment. We will critique the empirical literature on contextual factors contributing to school satisfaction, one marker of positive school adjustment. Finally, we will make recommendations for practice and research in this area.

Bakker, A. B., & Schaufeli, W. B. (2008). Positive organizational 154. doi:10.1002/job.515. This editorial introduces a special issue of the Journal of Organizational Behavior on positive organizational behavior (POB). POB emphasizes the need for more focused theory building, research, and effective application of positive traits, states, and behaviors of employees in organizations. We argue that in order to make a substantive contribution to organizational science, POB will need to show the added value of the positive over and above the negative. In addition, the emerging concept of employee engagement is briefly introduced. The papers in the special issue describe exciting positive organizational behavior studies that each tap into an interesting direction in which POB research might go.

Baltes, P. B., & Staudinger, U. M. (2000). Wisdom: A metaheuristic (pragmatic) to orchestrate mind and virtue toward excellence[Special issue]. American Psychologist, 55(1), 122–136. doi:10.1037//0003–066X.55.1.122. The primary focus of this article is on the presentation of wisdom research conducted under the heading of the Berlin wisdom paradigm. Informed by a cultural–historical analysis, wisdom in this paradigm is defined as an expert knowledge system concerning the fundamental pragmatics of life. These include knowledge and judgment about the meaning and conduct of life and the orchestration of human development toward excellence while attending conjointly to personal and collective well–being. Measurement includes think–aloud protocols concerning various problems of life associated with life planning, life management, and life review. Responses are evaluated with reference to a family of 5 criteria: rich factual and procedural knowledge, lifespan contextualism, relativism of values and life priorities, and recognition and management of uncertainty. A series of studies is reported that aim to describe, explain, and optimize wisdom. The authors conclude with a new theoretical perspective that characterizes wisdom as a cognitive and motivational metaheuristic (pragmatic) that organizes and orchestrates knowledge toward human excellence in mind and virtue, both individually and collectively.

Bamford, C., & Lagattuta, K. H. (2011). Looking on the bright side: Children's knowledge about the benefits of positive versus negative thinking. Child Development, 00(0), 1-16. doi:10.1111/j.1467-8624.2011.01706.x Five- to 10-year-olds (N=90) listened to 6 illustrated scenarios featuring 2 characters that jointly experience the same positive event (and feel good), negative event (and feel bad), or ambiguous event (and feel okay). Afterward, one character thinks a positive thought and the other thinks a negative thought. Children predicted and explained each character's emotions. Results showed significant development between 5 and 10 years in children's understanding that thinking positively improves emotions and thinking negatively makes one feel worse, with earliest knowledge demonstrated when reasoning about ambiguous and positive events. Individual differences in child and parental optimism and hope predicted children's knowledge about thought-emotion connections on some measures, including their beliefs about the emotional benefits of thinking positively in negative situations.

Bar–On, R. (2010). Emotional intelligence: an integral part of positive psychology. South African Journal of Psychology, 40(1), 54–62. Psychological Society of South Africa. Retrieved July 17, 2011, from http://scholar.google.com/scholar?hl=en&btnG=Search&q=intitle:Emotional+intelligence:+an+integral+part+of+positive+psychology#0. Both "emotional intelligence" and "positive psychology" are rapidly becoming very visible, popular and important areas within psychology. This article suggests that emotional intelligence should be considered an integral part of positive psychology. Empirical findings are presented that support this notion in addition to examining the way both disciplines have been described, defined and conceptualised over the past decade. This approach to categorising emotional intelligence is one way of justifying where it should be placed within the field of psychology. In light of the fact that the current article addresses this issue directly and based on the specific approach which is applied, it is hoped that this publication will represent a useful contribution to the literature.

Barker, C., & Martin, B. (2010). Dilemmas in teaching happiness. Journal of University Teaching & Learning Practice, 6(2), 2. Retrieved June 17, 2011, from http://ro.uow.edu.au/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1088&amp;context=jutlp.

Bartram, D., & Boniwell, I. (2007). The science of happiness: Achieving sustained psychological wellbeing. In Practice, 29, 478–482. doi:10.1136/inpract.29.8.478 WHILE a vast body of research has been dedicated to understanding problems and disorders of mental health, until the recent emergence of a new field of science, little was known about the positive aspects of life – the things that make life worth living. Positive psychology endeavours to understand how individuals and societies thrive and flourish, and how this new knowledge can be applied to foster happiness, health and fulfilment. Here, David Bartram and Ilona Boniwell discuss strategies for enhancing individual wellbeing, which it is hoped will temper some of the challenges and pressures facing veterinary professionals in their daily lives.

Bauer, J., Schwab, J., & McAdams, D. (2011). Self–Actualizing: Where ego development finally feels good? The Humanistic Psychologist, 39(2), 121–136. doi:10.1080/08873267.2011.564978. This article addresses a paradox surrounding psychosocial maturity and self–actualizing in relation to well–being. Several stage theories of maturity (notably ego development; Loevinger, 1976) culminate in self–actualizing, which Maslow (1968) characterizes as the pinnacle of psychological health and well–being. However, empirical measures of maturity and well–being do not correlate. In a reanalysis of three datasets, we find preliminary support for the notion that people scoring at the highest stage of Loevinger's ego development might have higher levels of well–being and narrate a more growth–focused self–identity than people scoring at all other stages. Drawing on Erikson's (1959= 1994) claim that the acceptance of life's complexities underlies ego integrity, we attempt to provide a theoretical explanation for how well–being might emerge normatively at the highest stage of psychosocial maturity.

Baumeister, R. F. (1987). How the self became a problem: A psychological review of historical research. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 52(1), 163-176. doi:10.1037/0022-3514.52.1.163 In this article, historical evidence pertaining to selfhood is reviewed. A scheme of stages is delineated, according to which the modern self and its uncertainties have evolved. The historical data are then reviewed in connection with the following four major problems regarding the self: knowing and conceptualizing the self; defining or creating the self; understanding one's potential and fulfilling it; and relating the single self to society.

Baumeister, R. F., Bratslavsky, E., Finkenauer, C., & Vohs, K. D. (2001). Bad is stronger than good. Review of General Psychology, 5(4), 323–370. doi:10.1037/1089–2680.5.4.323 The greater power of bad events over good ones is found in everyday events, major life events (e.g., trauma), close relationship outcomes, social network patterns, interpersonal interactions, and learning processes. Bad emotions, bad parents, and bad feedback have more impact than good ones, and bad information is processed more thoroughly than good. The self is more motivated to avoid bad self–definitions than to pursue good ones. Bad impressions and bad stereotypes are quicker to form and more resistant to disconfirmation than good ones. Various explanations such as diagnosticity and salience help explain some findings, but the greater power of bad events is still found when such variables are controlled. Hardly any exceptions (indicating greater power of good) can be found. Taken together, these findings suggest that bad is stronger than good, as a general principle across a broad range of psychological phenomena.

Baumeister, R. F., & Leary, M. R. (1995). The need to belong: Desire for interpersonal attachments as a fundamental human motivation. Psychological Bulletin, 117(3), 497–529. doi:10.1037/0033–2909.117.3.497. A hypothesized need to form and maintain strong, stable interpersonal relationships is evaluated in light of the empirical literature. The need is for frequent, nonaversive interactions within an ongoing relational bond. Consistent with the belongingness hypothesis, people form social attachments readily under most conditions and resist the dissolution of existing bonds. Belongingness appears to have multiple and strong effects on emotional patterns and on cognitive processes. Lack of attachments is linked to a variety of ill effects on health, adjustment, and well–being. Other evidence, such as that concerning satiation, substitution, and behavioral consequences, is likewise consistent with the hypothesized motivation. Several seeming counterexamples turned out not to disconfirm the hypothesis. Existing evidence supports the hypothesis that the need to belong is a powerful, fundamental, and extremely pervasive motivation.

Bear, G. G., Manning, M., & Izard, C. E. (2003). Responsible 157. doi:10.1521/scpq. Traditionally, the development of responsible behavior has been a primary aim of American education. Responsible behavior entails self–motivation and self–guidance, and not obedience and compliance to rules merely in response to external supervision, rewards, and punishment. External factors certainly play a major role in responsible behavior, but so too do social cognition and emotion. The purpose of this article is to present a brief review of research linking social cognition and emotion to responsible behavior. Implications for school psychologists are discussed, with a particular emphasis on the importance of developing and implementing prevention and intervention programs that address the multiple components of responsible behavior.

Becker, D., & Marecek, J. (2008). Positive psychology: History in the remaking [Special issue]? Theory & Psychology, 18(5), 591–604. doi:10.1177/0959354308093397. Positive psychology has figured itself as no less than a revolutionary reorientation of psychology, one that makes individual 'flourishing' the primary object of study and intervention. There are clear comparisons to be made between this movement and earlier ones that have embraced both individualism and an ethos of adjustment, such as the popular mind cures of the late 19th century and the influential mental hygiene movement of the early 20th century. We argue for a focus beyond the individual in isolation, a perspective that takes in the totality of the social environment and an ethical stance that values social engagement and activism. We further call for more nuanced conceptions of happiness, virtue, and strengths, as well as for more socially informed theorizing about human flourishing. Finally, we suggest that positive psychology, with its growing assortment of applied uses, serves to address the acute market pressures facing clinical psychologists today.

Ben–Shahar, B. (2007). Happier: Learn the secrets to daily joy and lasting fulfillment. New York, NY: McGraw–Hill.

Ben–Shahar, B. (2009). The pursuit of perfect: How to stop chasing perfection and start living a richer, happier life. New York, NY: McGraw–Hill.

Berkowitz, M. W., & Bier, M. C. (2004). Research–based character education [Special issue]. The Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science, 591(1), 72–85. doi:10.1177/0002716203260082. Whereas character education is not new, scientific study of its effectiveness has been only sporadically implemented during the past thirty–five years. Much of the application of character education is therefore not informed by a scientific knowledge base. This article introduces a scientific perspective on character education and a summary of the research base examining the student impact of school–based character education. From this research base, general principles of effective practice are derived. This in turn is used to offer suggestions to practitioners and policy makers for the improvement of school–based character education.

Bernard, M., Froh, J., DiGiuseppe, R., Joyce, M., & Dryden, W. (2010). Albert Ellis: Unsung hero of positive psychology. The Journal of Positive Psychology, 5(4), 302–310. doi:10.1080/17439760.2010.498622. The contributions of Albert Ellis to the understanding of human happiness including his suggestions for living a happier life have not been represented in the field of positive psychology. This article presents Ellis' theoretical constructs associated with his conception of happiness (dual nature of human psyche, self–actualization, purpose and goals of life and short– and long–term happiness). Eleven of Ellis' rational principles of living (e.g. self–interest, self–direction, self–acceptance, commitment to absorbing activities, hedonism) are presented. When consistently applied in practice, they may help people to experience frequent positive affect, less frequent and intense negative emotions and high life satisfaction. It will show how Ellis' ABC–DE scientific method can be used with individuals to lessen unhappiness. Suggestions are provided for research into associations between rationality and happiness as well as the impact of different rationality–based interventions on happiness. [It is hoped that Ellis' rationality–based happiness interventions will become recognized and studied to see if they make a distinctive difference to the science of positive psychology as well as to the lives of everyday people.]

Bird, J. M., & Markle, R. S. (2012). Subjective well-being in school environments: Promoting positive youth development through evidence-based assessment and intervention. The American Journal of Orthopsychiatry, 82, 61-6. doi:10.1111/j.1939-0025.2011.01127.x Research on subjective well-being indicates that it is associated with academic success and positive school functioning. Despite a wealth of empirical research demonstrating the benefits of interventions aimed at increasing middle and high school students' well-being, few educational institutions have adopted evidence-based curricula that address this construct as a means of promoting future academic and social achievement. In addition, numerous studies have begun to identify several factors that contribute to well-being and thus have helped children and adolescents to be successful in both academic and social domains. These critical factors include personal goal setting, structured mentoring or life coaching, increasing gratitude, problem solving, and interpersonal skills. The present article provides a broad discussion of relevant research findings on these factors and advocates for the adoption of curricula that incorporate these components in order to ensure that best practices are utilized in the school environment and for positive youth development. Lastly, a theoretical proposal for empirically based assessment and interventions that encompass key components associated with increased child and adolescent well-being is provided.

Biswas–Diener, R., & Dean, B. (2007). Positive psychology coaching: Putting the science of happiness to work for your clients. Hoboken, NJ: Wiley.

Biswas–Diener, R., Diener, E., & Tamir, M. (2004). The psychology of subjective well-being. Daedalus, 133(2), 18-25. doi:10.1162/001152604323049352

Biswas–Diener, R., Kashdan, T., & King, L. (2009). Two traditions of happiness research, not two distinct types of happiness. The Journal of Positive Psychology, 4(3), 208–211. doi:10.1080/17439760902844400. In an earlier paper (Kashdan, Biswas–Diener, & King, 2008), we outlined a critique of the distinction being made between eudaimonic and hedonic forms of happiness. That paper seems to have had the desired effect in stimulating discourse on this important subject as evidenced by a number of responses from our colleagues. In this paper, we address these responses collectively. In particular, we outline common intellectual ground with the responding authors as well as points of difference.

Bohart, A. C., & Greening, T. (2001). Humanistic psychology and positive psychology. American Psychologist, 56(1), 81–82. doi:10.1037/0003–066X.56.1.81. Comments on M. E. P. Seligman and M. Csikszentmihalyi's (see record 2000–13324–001) introduction to the special issue on positive psychology (American Psychologist, 2000[Jan], Vol 55[1]). The commenting authors wish that Seligman and Csikszentmihalyi had done a more scholarly job of investigating humanistic psychology.

Bonanno, G., Galea, S., Bucciarelli, A., & Vlahov, D. (2007). What predicts psychological resilience after disaster? The role of demographics, resources, and life stress. Journal of consulting and clinical psychology, 75(5), 671–82. doi:10.1037/0022–006X.75.5.671. A growing body of evidence suggests that most adults exposed to potentially traumatic events are resilient. However, research on the factors that may promote or deter adult resilience has been limited. This study examined patterns of association between resilience and various sociocontextual factors. The authors used data from a random–digit–dial phone survey (N = 2,752) conducted in the New York, NY City area after the September 11, 2001, terrorist attack. Resilience was defined as having 1 or 0 posttraumatic stress disorder symptoms and as being associated with low levels of depression and substance use. Multivariate analyses indicated that the prevalence of resilience was uniquely predicted by participant gender, age, race/ethnicity, education, level of trauma exposure, income change, social support, frequency of chronic disease, and recent and past life stressors. Implications for future research and intervention are discussed. [Study of predictors of resilience using multivariate analyses and population–based data set.]

Bonanno, G., Westphal, M., & Mancini, A. D. (2011). Resilience to loss and potential trauma. Annual review of clinical psychology, 7, 511–35. doi:10.1146/annurev–clinpsy–032210–104526.Initial research on loss and potentially traumatic events (PTEs) has been dominated by either a psychopathological approach emphasizing individual dysfunction or an event approach emphasizing average differences between exposed and nonexposed groups. We consider the limitations of these approaches and review more recent research that has focused on the heterogeneity of outcomes following aversive events. Using both traditional analytic tools and sophisticated latent trajectory modeling, this research has identified a set of prototypical outcome patterns. Typically, the most common outcome following PTEs is a stable trajectory of healthy functioning or resilience. We review research showing that resilience is not the result of a few dominant factors, but rather that there are multiple independent predictors of resilient outcomes. Finally, we critically evaluate the question of whether resilience–building interventions can actually make people more resilient, and we close with suggestions for future research on resilience. 1. Traditional approaches to loss and potentially traumatic events (PTEs) have emphasized psychopathology or average differences between exposed and nonexposed groups. 2. Traditional approaches to PTEs assume homogeneity in outcome, whereas individual difference approaches assume outcome heterogeneity. 3. The prototypical longitudinal outcome patterns after PTEs are chronic distress, gradual recovery, delayed increases in distress, and resilience.  4. Resilience, when defined as an outcome, is typically the most common pattern observed. 5. Latent growth modeling makes it possible to identify prototypical outcome patterns empirically. 6. There are multiple, independent predictors of resilient outcomes. 7. Resilience–building interventions may be ineffective and perhaps even harmful.

Bonanno, G. A. (2004). Loss, trauma, and human resilience: have we underestimated the human capacity to thrive after extremely aversive events? The American psychologist, 59(1), 20–8. doi:10.1037/0003–066X.59.1.20.Many people are exposed to loss or potentially traumatic events at some point in their lives, and yet they continue to have positive emotional experiences and show only minor and transient disruptions in their ability to function. Unfortunately, because much of psychology's knowledge about how adults cope with loss or trauma has come from individuals who sought treatment or exhibited great distress, loss and trauma theorists have often viewed this type of resilience as either rare or pathological. The author challenges these assumptions by reviewing evidence that resilience represents a distinct trajectory from the process of recovery, that resilience in the face of loss or potential trauma is more common than is often believed, and that there are multiple and sometimes unexpected pathways to resilience. [One of the most frequently cited papers on resilience that conceptualizes resilience as a normal and common response to potential trauma.]

Boniwell, I. (2006). Positive psychology in a nutshell: A balanced introduction to the science of optimal functioning (2nd ed. Rev. ed.). London, England: PWBC.

Bracken, B., & Lamprecht, M. S. (2003). Positive self–concept: An equal opportunity construct [Special issue]. School Psychology Quarterly, 18(2), 103–121. doi: 10.1521/scpq. This article examines the findings of self–concept studies and meta–analyses that examine the development of healthy self–concepts in children and adolescents with differing basic human characteristics and conditions. A theoretical model for self–concept is presented that purposes how healthy self–concepts develop and can be acquired. In light of the abundance of popular and professional literature devoted to methods for assessing and enhancing healthy self–concepts, we recommend that future self–concept research employ only scientifically defensible intervention methodology and employ dependent measures that are theoretically and technically sound. Future scholarship should go beyond the foundational issues that continue to resurface and should serve to guide researchers, educators, and psychologists toward addressing the next generation of questions about the establishment and maintenance of positive self–concepts in children and adolescents.

Brdar, I. (Ed.). (2011). The human pursuit of well–being: A cultural approach. New York, NY: Springer.

Bretherton, R. (2006). Can existential psychotherapy be good news? Reflections on existential psychotherapy from a Christian perspective [Special issue]. Mental Health, Religion & Culture, 9(3), 265–275. doi:10.1080/13694670600615490. One of the major difficulties in advocating a positive approach to therapeutic work is that most candidates for psychotherapy are preoccupied with the negative or painful aspects of their lives. However, it is argued that positive clinical practice can be derived from the therapist recognizing a shared human predicament with the client, a recognition which requires a degree of honesty on the part of the therapist. This frank self–reflection is much in evidence in the writings of the existential atheists, largely due to their assertion that there is no observing deity who may judge the faults and weaknesses of human beings. Believers in a theistic God, however, may be more cautious in acknowledging sources of shame or guilt in themselves out of fear of divine disapproval. From a Christian perspective, the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ justify human existence and provide evidence of God's love. Acceptance of this can allow the Christian psychotherapist to be cognizant of potential shortcomings and thereby experience a strong identification with the challenges of living presented by the client. This can enable a positive and non–pathologizing relationship with clients of any religious or ideological persuasion.

Bruni L., Comim, F., & Pugno M. (Eds.). (2008). Capabilities and happiness. New York, NY: Oxford.

Bruni L., & Pugno M. (Eds.). (2005). Economics and happiness: Framing the analysis. New York, NY: Oxford.

Buckley, M., Storino, M., & Saarni, C. (2003). Promoting emotional competence in children and adolescents: Implications for school psychologists [Special issue]. School Psychology Quarterly, 18(2), 177–191. doi:10.1521/scpq. This article articulates the central role school psychologists can play in enhancing the emotional competence of students. An overview of the theoretical basis of emotional competence is provided, as well as an exploration of the relevance of emotional competence for positive youth development. Emerging applications for the assessment of emotional competence are presented. In addition, school–based methods of enhancing emotional competence are offered. The article concludes with suggestions for future research on the development of child and adolescent emotional competence in the context of school–related behavior.

Bundick, M. J. (2011). Extracurricular activities, positive youth development, and the role of meaningfulness of engagement. The Journal of Positive Psychology, 6(1), 57–74. doi:10.1080/17439760.2010.536775. Previous research has shown that participation in extracurricular activities in high school can promote desirable outcomes, such as educational attainment and reduced problem behaviors, but little attention has been paid to relations with psychological indicators of positive youth development (PYD). Moreover, the potential importance of the degree to which young people find such engagement personally meaningful toward these relations has been overlooked. This study investigated longitudinal relations among extracurricular participation and multiple indicators of positive development in adolescence, and explored whether personal meaningfulness of these domains moderated these relations. Results showed that positive development was positively associated with participation in student leadership and volunteering, and negatively associated with participation in the creative arts. Additionally, many of the relations among extracurricular participation and positive development were moderated by activity meaningfulness, typically in the negative direction. The discussion highlights future directions for research on extracurricular participation, meaningful engagement, and PYD.

Burns, D. D. (1999). The feeling good handbook (Rev. ed.). New York, NY: Penguin.

Burns, G. W. (Ed.). (2010). Happiness, healing, enhancement: Your casebook collection for applying positive psychology in therapy. Hoboken, NJ: Wiley.

Burns, R. A., & Machin, M. A. (2012). Moving beyond the pleasure principle: Within and between-occasion effects of employee eudaimonia within a school organizational climate context. Journal of Vocational Behavior, 80, 118-128. doi:10.1016/j.jvb.2011.04.007 Eudaimonic notions of well-being have increasingly figured in the well-being literature. The impact of such constructs in the organizational psychology literature has been more limited. Within an Organizational Health Research Framework (OHRF), we present findings that demonstrate the importance of eudaimonic, or psychological well-being (PWB), constructs which have been purported to be more temporally stable than affective dimensions of subjective well-being (SWB). Several hypotheses were tested on three school teacher samples from around the globe. Of particular emphasis, both cross-sectional and longitudinal analyses indicated that the predictive model demonstrated that individual PWB is the strongest predictor of employees' positive affect while positive organizational climate was the strongest predictor of school morale and distress. In conclusion, we found support for the role of eudaimonic constructs within the OHRF, identifying independent effects for individual and organizational characteristics on employee well-being, and with differential effects on positive and negative domains of SWB.

Burton, C. M., & King, L. A. (2009). The health benefits of writing about positive experiences: the role of broadened cognition. Psychology & health, 24(8), 867–79. doi:10.1080/08870440801989946.This study tested the potential to elicit a broadened attentional focus through writing about a positive life experience and to derive health benefits from such writing. Participants (n = 38) wrote for 20 min each day for 3 consecutive days about either a positive life experience or a control topic. Writing about positive experiences led to improved physical health (measured 4–6 weeks after writing) compared to control and higher levels of global cognitive focus after writing mediated this effect. Notably, while the positive writing condition was more broadened than control, positive affect was not responsible for this difference. Implications for disclosive writing and the broaden and build model are discussed.

Buss, D. M. (2000). The evolution of happiness[Special issue]. American Psychologist, 55(1), 15–23. doi:10.1037/0003–066X.55.1.15. An evolutionary perspective offers novel insights into some major obstacles to achieving happiness. Impediments include large discrepancies between modern and ancestral environments, the existence of evolved mechanisms "designed" to produce subjective distress, and the fact that evolution by selection has produced competitive mechanisms that function to benefit one person at the expense of others. On the positive side, people also possess evolved mechanisms that produce deep sources of happiness: those for mating bonds, deep friendship, close kinship, and cooperative coalitions. Understanding these psychological mechanisms–the selective processes that designed them, their evolved functions, and the contexts governing their activation–offers the best hope for holding some evolved mechanisms in check and selectively activating others to produce an overall increment in human happiness.

Cacioppo, J. T., Hawkley, L. C., Rickett, E. M., & Masi, C. M. (2005). Sociality, spirituality, and meaning making: Chicago health, aging, and social relations study [Special issue]. Review of General Psychology, 9(2), 143–155. doi:10.1037/1089–2680.9.2.143. Scientific theories in the natural sciences posit invisible forces operating with measurable effects on physical bodies, but the scientific study of invisible forces acting on human bodies has made limited progress. The topics of sociality, spirituality, and meaning making are cases in point. The authors discuss some of the possible reasons for this as well as contemporary developments in the social sciences and neurosciences that may make such study possible and productive.

Cacioppo, J. T., Reis, H. T., & Zautra, A. J. (2011). Social resilience: The value of social fitness with an application to the military. The American Psychologist, 66(1), 43–51. doi:10.1037/a0021419 Resilience has been regarded narrowly as a quintessential individual property by most investigators. Social resilience, however, is inherently a multilevel construct, revealed by capacities of individuals, but also groups, to foster, engage in, and sustain positive social relationships and to endure and recover from stressors and social isolation. Emergent levels of organization, ranging from dyads, families, and groups to cities, civilizations, and international alliances have long been apparent in human existence, but identifying the features of individuals, relationships, and group structures and norms that promote social resilience–and determining effective interventions to build social resilience–represent some of the most important challenges facing the military as well as contemporary behavioral science. We identify nine personal resources that foster social resilience, and we describe an educational, computer–based program that builds on these resources in an effort to improve the social resilience among troops in the U.S. Army. Data from this program should provide valuable evidence regarding the challenge of building social resilience.

Cameron, K. S., Dutton, J. E., & Quinn, R. E. (Eds.). (2003). Positive organizational scholarship: Foundations of a new discipline. San Francisco, CA: Berrett–Koehler.

Campbell, A. (1976). Subjective measures of well-being. American Psychologist, 31(2), 117-124. doi:10.1037/0003-066X.31.2.117

Campos, J. J. (2003). When the negative becomes positive and the reverse: Comments on Lazarus's critique of positive psychology [Special issue]. Psychological Inquiry, 14, 110–113. doi:10.1207/S15327965PLI1402_03

Cantor, N. (1941). What is a normal mind? American Journal of Orthopsychiatry, 11(4), 676-683. doi:10.1111/j.1939-0025.1941.tb05857.x

Carr, A. (2004). Positive psychology: The science of happiness and human strengths. New York, NY: Brunner–Routledge.

Casey, G. W. (2011). Comprehensive soldier fitness: A vision for psychological resilience in the U.S. Army. The American Psychologist, 66(1), 1–3. doi:10.1037/a0021930 The stress and strain on the U.S. Army's community due to nearly a decade of protracted war is well documented in the press and in scientific literature. In response, the Army's Comprehensive Soldier Fitness (CSF) program is a preventive program that seeks to enhance psychological resilience among all members of the Army community, which includes soldiers, family members, and Department of the Army civilians. CSF is not a medical treatment program. Rather, CSF helps those community members who are psychologically healthy face life's adversities–including combat and prolonged separation from loved ones–by providing evidence–based training.

Catalano, R. F., Berglund, M. L., Ryan, J. M., Lonczak, H. S., & Hawkins, J. D. (2004). Positive youth development in the United States: Research findings on evaluations of positive youth development programs. The Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science, 591(1), 98–124. doi:10.1177/0002716203260102. This article summarizes a much lengthier one that appeared in Prevention and Treatment. The earlier article grew out of a project initiated by the Department of Health and Human Services Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation. The Positive Youth Development Evaluation project described why policy makers, practitioners, and prevention scientists advocated a shift in approach for how youth issues are addressed in this country. The Positive Youth Development Evaluation project sought to define how youth development programs have been defined in the literature and then to locate, through a structured search, strong evaluations of these programs and summarize the outcomes of these evaluations. In the current article, we explain why prevention has shifted from a single problem focus to a focus on factors that affect both positive and problem youth development, describe what is meant by positive youth development, and summarize what we know about the effectiveness of positive youth development programs.

Catania, A. C. (2001). Positive psychology and positive reinforcement. American Psychologist, 56(1), 86–87. doi:10.1037/0003–066X.56.1.86. Comments on M. E. P. Seligman and M. Csikszentmihalyi's (see record 2000–13324–001) introduction to the special issue on positive psychology (American Psychologist, 2000[Jan], Vol 55[1]). The commenting author suggests that to achieve a major scientific shift to positive psychology (which could complement the dominant disease–oriented focus in mental health), psychologists should reconcile and merge the two foci; this could be best done by gradually infusing positive psychology into current models of psychopathology and treatment. To ease the integration and transition from a psychopathology–focused to a strength–focused approach in therapeutic psychology, programmatic research might be necessary; three possible areas of attention are discussed.

Chao, R. (2002). Seeing the forest and seeing the trees in psychology. American Psychologist, 57(12), 1128-1129. doi:10.1037//0003-066X.57.12.1128

Chaplin, L. N., Bastos, W., & Lowrey, T. M. (2010). Beyond brands: Happy adolescents see the good in people. The Journal of Positive Psychology, 5(5), 342–354. doi:10.1080/17439760.2010.507471. How does happiness affect adolescents' stereotypes of other people? Using a collage methodology with 60 adolescents aged 12–18, we find that happier adolescents hold more positive stereotypes of others compared to those who are less happy. We also find that happier adolescents are less likely to form impressions of people based on surface level cues such as the products and brands that people own. Finally, our results show that happier adolescents have a more nuanced view of others, (e.g., some cool kids wear expensive brands, but some shop at thrift stores), compared to their less happy counterparts, who tend to oversimplify their view of others (e.g., all cool kids wear expensive brands, all doctors drive a BMW).

Chesney, M., Darbes, L., Hoerster, K., Taylor, J. M., Chambers, D. B., & Anderson, D. E. (2005). Positive emotions: exploring the other hemisphere in behavioral medicine [Special issue]. International Journal of Behavioral Medicine, 12(2), 50–8. doi:10.1207/s15327558ijbm1202_2. The search for the psychological antecedents of medical disorders has focused on the role of stress and negative emotional states. Previous research in this area has investigated relations between negative emotions and physiological adaptations (e.g., blood pressure elevations), adverse health behaviors (e.g., smoking), and social conditions (e.g., social isolation). In this discussion, we argue that more attention is needed to understand the effects of positive emotional states on health enhancement and disease prevention. In each of the areas cited previously, evidence is beginning to emerge that indicates that positive emotions can be associated with health promoting conditions. Interventions using cognitive behavioral strategies or meditation can increase positive emotional states that are maintained over time and that may benefit health and well–being. Implications for behavioral medicine are discussed.

Chirkov, V., Ryan, R. M., Kim, Y., & Kaplan, U. (2003). Differentiating autonomy from individualism and independence: A self–determination theory perspective on internalization of cultural orientations and well–being. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 84(1), 97–110. doi:10.1037/0022–3514.84.1.97. On the basis of self–determination theory ( R. M. Ryan & E. L. Deci, 2000) and cultural descriptions drawn from H. C. Triandis (1995), the authors hypothesized that (a) individuals from different cultures internalize different cultural practices; (b) despite these differences, the relative autonomy of individuals' motivation for those practices predicts well–being in all 4 cultures examined; and (c) horizontal practices are more readily internalized than vertical practices across all samples. Five hundred fifty–nine persons from South Korea, Russia, Turkey and the United States participated. Results supported the hypothesized relations between autonomy and well–being across cultures and gender. Results also suggested greater internalization of horizontal relative to vertical practices. Discussion focuses on the distinction between autonomy and individualism and the relative fit of cultural forms with basic psychological needs.

Chovan, W. (2002). Theory knitting reconsidered. American Psychologist, 57(12), 1127-1128. doi:10.1037//0003-066X.57.12.1127b

Christopher, C. J., & Campbell, R. L. (2008). An interactivist–hermeneutic metatheory for positive psychology [Special issue]. Theory & Psychology, 18(5), 675–697. doi:10.1177/0959354308093401. Drawing on Bickhard's interactivism along with philosophical hermeneutics, we outline a plausible ontology of human action and development that might serve as a metatheory for positive psychology. Our nondualistic metatheory rests on a distributed notion of agency. The kinds of morally imbued social practices that are identified by hermeneutic theorists constitute one level of agency. At the first level of agency, persons are already committed, at least by implication, to folk psychologies that cover positive emotion, positive traits, and positive institutions. Higher levels of agency and knowing emerge through the process of development. The higher knowing levels incorporate the capacity for conscious self–reflexive awareness, which permits the person to consciously deliberate and form theories of the good person and the good life. These more consciously formed positive folk psychologies are always in a dialectical relationship with the more implicit and embodied understandings of the good life as manifested in social practices, emotional experiences, and habitual thoughts. We suggest that this framework helps to account for the 'diversity of goods' that underlie our lives and to clarify the relationship that the professional positive psychologist will have with his or her native folk psychology.

Christopher, J. C., & Hickinbottom, S. (2008). Positive psychology, ethnocentrism, and the disguised ideology of individualism. Theory & Psychology, 18(5), 563–589. doi:10.1177/0959354308093396. This article aims to examine critically the attempts by positive psychologists to develop a science of happiness and positive human functioning that transcends temporal and cultural boundaries. Current efforts in positive psychology are deconstructed to reveal an adherence to the dominant Western conception of self and its accompanying vision of the good life as personal fulfillment. It is argued that in failing to recognize the tacit cultural and moral assumptions underlying their investigations, positive psychologists not only distort the outlooks of cultures that do not subscribe to an individualistic framework, they also insulate themselves from reflecting critically on their work. Alternative forms of inquiry are offered to assist positive psychology in overcoming these limitations.

Christopher, J. C., Richardson, F. C., & Slife, B. D. (2008). Thinking through positive psychology [Special issue]. Theory & Psychology, 18(5), 555–561. doi:10.1177/0959354308093395. Positive psychology offers a needed corrective to deficiencies in mainstream psychology. However, there have been relatively few attempts to systematically analyze and assess this movement. This special issue examines the conceptual underpinnings and guiding ideals of positive psychology. Generally, these articles conclude that positive psychologists have not dealt adequately with the challenge of rendering credible and illuminating accounts of human flourishing in a post–positivist era and in a pluralistic society. The authors suggest ways we might better meet this challenge, allowing us to discuss questions of human agency, character, and the good life despite quite different views of them across historical eras and cultures. We hope this will help fulfill some of the aims of positive psychology.

Cigman, R. (2008). Enhancing children [Special issue]. Journal of Philosophy of Education, 42(3–4), 539–557. doi:10.1111/j.1467–9752.2008.00648.x. The 'enhancement agenda' in educational policy is based on the idea that 'something affective', which supports and improves learning, can be a) measured and b) enhanced. This idea is explored, and it is argued that the identity of the 'something' that the enhancement agenda seeks to enhance is fatally obscure, as is the idea of measurable enhancement. Interpreted in Aristotelian terms as the desire to cultivate certain emotional dispositions, the idea of 'prevailing' on children morally makes good sense. Unlike the enhancement agenda, however, the Aristotelian project is informal, intimate and bound to the notion of human flourishing. The paper concludes with an enquiry into the central concerns that drive the enhancement debate, and an answer is sketched in terms of excessive fear and shame, and the circular logic of failure. This answer, it is argued, elucidates an 'ordinary' concept of low self–esteem that is a potential 'barrier to learning', and should therefore be taken seriously by educators.

Cloninger, C. R. (2004). Feeling good: The science of well-being. New York, NY: Oxford.

Cohen, J. (2006). Social, Emotional, Ethical, and Academic Education: Creating a Climate for Learning, Participation in Democracy, and Well–Being. Harvard Educational Review, 76(2), 201–237. HEPG. Retrieved July 15, 2011, from http://her.hepg.org/index/J44854X1524644VN.pdf. In this article, Jonathan Cohen argues that the goals of education need to be reframed to prioritize not only academic learning, but also social, emotional, and ethical competencies. Surveying the current state of research in the fields of social emotional education, character education, and school–based mental health in the United States, Cohen suggests that social–emotional skills, knowledge, and dispositions provide the foundation for participation in a democracy and improved quality of life. Cohen discusses contemporary best practices and policy in relation to creating safe and caring school climates, home–school partnerships, and a pedagogy informed by social–emotional and ethical concerns. He also emphasizes the importance of scientifically sound measures of social–emotional and ethical learning, and advocates for action research partnerships between researchers and practioners to develop authentic methods of evaluation. Cohen notes the gulf that exists between the evidence– based guidelines for social–emotional learning, which are being increasingly adopted at the state level, and what is taught in schools of education and practiced in preK–12 schools. Finally, he asserts that social, emotional, ethical, and academic education is a human right that all students are entitled to, and argues that ignoring this amounts to a social injustice.

Cohen, K., & Cairns, D. (2011). Is searching for meaning in life associated with reduced subjective well–being? Confirmation and possible moderators. Journal of Happiness Studies. doi:10.1007/s10902–011–9265–7. Meaning in life has been identified as an important element of well–being. Recently attention has been directed to examining the differences between having meaning in life and searching for meaning in life. Theory has speculated that if an individual is searching for meaning in life, he/she may be distressed. Researchers of late have begun to focus on the process of searching for meaning in life to gain a better understanding of the individual differences which may exist. Interest has also been directed towards exploring whether any moderators of the possible negative effects of the searching process may exist. This research investigated the hypothesised negative link between high levels of searching for meaning in life and subjective well–being and the positive moderating effects of presence of meaning in life while also exploring the influence of the demographic variables which were treated as control variables. From an exploratory stance further analysis examined the hypothesised positive moderating effects of self–actualisation, self–efficacy and achievement motives on the relationship between searching for meaning and subjective well–being. One study (n = 500) was conducted to assess the hypothesized relationships. The study confirmed the negative relationship between high levels of searching for meaning in life and subjective well–being and positive moderating effects that presence of meaning in life and self–actualisation have on happiness scores when individuals are searching for meaning in life. Self–efficacy and achievement motives were shown to have no significant moderating effects on searching for meaning in life and subjective wellbeing. Overall the results suggest that individuals who record high levels of searching for meaning in life are protected from the negative outcomes of this process by holding high levels of presence of meaning in life and self–actualisation.

Cohen, M. A. (2008). The effect of crime on life satisfaction [Special issue]. The Journal of Legal Studies, 37(S2), S325–S353. doi:10.1086/588220. Crime often ranks at the top of public concern, and a majority of the public report they sometimes worry about crime. Yet we know little about crime's impact on day‐to‐day quality of life. This paper provides new evidence on crime's effect on life satisfaction using a combination of victimization and subjective survey data. I find that county‐level crime rates and perceived neighborhood safety have little impact on overall life satisfaction. In contrast, the effect of a home burglary on life satisfaction is quite large—nearly as much as moving from excellent health to good health. In monetary terms, I estimate a compensating income equivalent of nearly $85,000 for a home burglary. Thus, while being burglarized has a large and significant effect on a victim's overall life satisfaction, neither county‐level crime rates nor neighborhood safety appear to have very large effects on daily life satisfaction for the average American.

Cohn, M. A, Fredrickson, B. L., Brown, S. L., Mikels, J., & Conway, A. M. (2009). Happiness unpacked: Positive emotions increase life satisfaction by building resilience. Emotion, 9, 361-8. doi:10.1037/a0015952 Happiness-a composite of life satisfaction, coping resources, and positive emotions-predicts desirable life outcomes in many domains. The broaden-and-build theory suggests that this is because positive emotions help people build lasting resources. To test this hypothesis, the authors measured emotions daily for 1 month in a sample of students (N = 86) and assessed life satisfaction and trait resilience at the beginning and end of the month. Positive emotions predicted increases in both resilience and life satisfaction. Negative emotions had weak or null effects and did not interfere with the benefits of positive emotions. Positive emotions also mediated the relation between baseline and final resilience, but life satisfaction did not. This suggests that it is in-the-moment positive emotions, and not more general positive evaluations of one's life, that form the link between happiness and desirable life outcomes. Change in resilience mediated the relation between positive emotions and increased life satisfaction, suggesting that happy people become more satisfied not simply because they feel better but because they develop resources for living well.

Colvin, C. R., Block, J., & Funder, D. C. (1995). Overly positive self-evaluations and personality: negative implications for mental health. Journal of personality and social psychology, 68(6), 1152-62. Retrieved from http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/7608859 The relation between overly positive self-evaluations and psychological adjustment was examined. Three studies, two based on longitudinal data and another on laboratory data, contrasted self-descriptions of personality with observer ratings (trained examiners or friends) to index self-enhancement. In the longitudinal studies, self-enhancement was associated with poor social skills and psychological maladjustment 5 years before and 5 years after the assessment of self-enhancement. In the laboratory study, individuals who exhibited a tendency to self-enhance displayed behaviors, independently judged, that seemed detrimental to positive social interaction. These results indicate there are negative short-term and long-term consequences for individuals who self-enhance and, contrary to some prior formulations, imply that accurate appraisals of self and of the social environment may be essential elements of mental health.

Compton, W. C. (2001). The values problem in subjective well-being. American Psychologist, 56(1), 84-84. doi:10.1037//0003-066X.56.1.84a

Compton, W. C. (2005). An introduction to positive psychology. Belmont, CA: Thompson–Wadsworth.

Conley, C. (2007). Peak: How great companies get their mojo from Maslow. San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass.

Conoley, C. W., & Conoley, J. C. (2009) Positive psychology and family therapy: Creative techniques and practical tools for guiding change and enhancing growth. Hoboken, NJ: Wiley.

Cornum, R., Matthews, M. D., & Seligman, M. E. P. (2011). Comprehensive soldier fitness: building resilience in a challenging institutional context. The American psychologist, 66(1), 4–9. doi:10.1037/a0021420. The Comprehensive Soldier Fitness (CSF) program is designed to increase psychological strength and positive performance and to reduce the incidence of maladaptive responses of the entire U.S. Army. Based on the principles of positive psychology, CSF is a historically unique approach to behavioral health in a large (1.1 million members) organization. There are four program elements: (a) the assessment of emotional, social, family, and spiritual fitness; (b) individualized learning modules to improve fitness in these domains; (c) formal resilience training; and (d) training of Army master resilience trainers (MRTs) to instill better thinking skills and resilience in their subordinates. In contrast to traditional approaches, CSF is proactive; rather than waiting to see who has a negative outcome following stress, it provides ways of improving resilience for all members of the Army. CSF aims to move the full spectrum of responses to trauma and adversity–ranging from stress–related disorders to ordinary resilience–toward personal growth. This program may provide a model for implementing similar interventions in other very large institutions.

Corrie, S. (2009). The art of inspired living: Coach yourself with positive psychology. London: Karnac

Costa, P. T., & McCrae, R. R. (1980). Influence of extraversion and neuroticism on subjective well–being: Happy and unhappy people. Journal of personality and social psychology, 38(4), 668–78. doi:10.1037/0022–3514.38.4.668 Three studies are reported that examine the relations between personality and happiness or subjective well–being. It is argued that (a) one set of traits influences positive affect or satisfaction, whereas a different set of traits influences negative affect or dissatisfaction; (b) the former set of traits can be reviewed as components of extraversion, and the latter as components of neuroticism; and (c) personality differences antedate and predict differences in happiness over a period of 10 years, thus ruling out the rival hypothesis that temporary moods or states account for the observed relations. A model of individual differences in happiness is presented, and the separate and complementary roles of trait and adaptation–level theories in explaining happiness are discussed.

Cowen, E. L. (1994). The enhancement of psychological wellness: Challenges and opportunities. American Journal of Community Psychology, 22(2), 149–179. doi:10.1007/BF02506861. Developed the concept of psychological wellness and made the case that proportionally more resources should be directed to the pursuit of this goal. Five pathways to wellness are considered, implicating aspects of individual development and the impact of contexts, settings, and policies. The five pathways are: forming wholesome early attachments; acquiring age– and ability–appropriate competencies; engineering settings that promote adaptive outcomes; fostering empowerment; and acquiring skills needed to cope effectively with life stressors. Although these noncompeting pathways have differential salience at different ages and for different groups and life conditions, each is an essential element in any comprehensive social plan to advance wellness. Examples of effective programs are cited in all five areas, including recent comprehensive, long–term programs embodying multiple pathways to wellness.

Cowen, E. L., & Kilmer, R. P. (2002). Positive psychology: Some plusses and some open issues. Journal of Community Psychology, 30(4), 449–460. doi:10.1002/jcop.10014. This commentary considers aspects of the recent American Psychologist Special Issue (SI) on "Positive Psychology." Strong points of this new thrust include: (a) a focal concern with insufficiencies in the current medical model in mental health; (b) a core focus on positive outcomes; and (c) the belief that such outcomes may, in the long run, be the most efficacious way of reducing psychological dysfunction. The approach's major current limitations include: (a) its relative insulation from closely related prior work in primary prevention and wellness enhancement; (b) its lack of a cohesive undergirding theoretical framework; and (c) its prime adult, cross–sectional approach, which does not sufficiently reflect key life history and developmental pathways and determinants of specific positive outcomes. The movement's wholesome future development stands to profit from careful attention to these lacunae.

Coyne, J. C., & Tennen, H. (2010). Positive psychology in cancer care: bad science, exaggerated claims, and unproven medicine. Annals of behavioral medicine, 39(1), 16–26. doi:10.1007/s12160–009–9154–z. Claims of positive psychology about people with cancer enjoy great popularity because they seem to offer scientific confirmation of strongly held cultural beliefs and values.

Coyne, J. C., Tennen, H., & Ranchor, A. V. (2010). Positive psychology in cancer care: a story line resistant to evidence. Annals of behavioral medicine : a publication of the Society of Behavioral Medicine, 39(1), 35–42. doi:10.1007/s12160–010–9157–9. BACKGROUND: Aspinwall and Tedeschi (Ann Behav Med, 2010) summarize evidence they view as supporting links between positive psychological states, including sense of coherence (SOC) and optimism and health outcomes, and they refer to persistent assumptions that interfere with understanding how positive states predict health. PURPOSE: We critically evaluate Aspinwall and Tedeschi's assertions. METHODS: We examine evidence related to SOC and optimism in relation to physical health, and revisit proposed processes linking positive psychological states to health outcomes, particularly via the immune system in cancer. RESULTS: Aspinwall and Tedeschi's assumptions regarding SOC and optimism are at odds with available evidence. Proposed pathways between positive psychological states and cancer outcomes are not supported by existing data. Aspinwall and Tedeschi's portrayal of persistent interfering assumptions echoes a disregard of precedent in the broader positive psychology literature. CONCLUSION: Positive psychology's interpretations of the literature regarding positive psychological states and cancer outcomes represent a self–perpetuating story line without empirical support.

Csikszentmihalyi, M. (1999). If we are so rich, why arenʼt we happy? American Psychologist, 54(10), 821–827. doi:10.1037//0003–066X.54.10.821. Ever since systematic thought has been recorded, the question of what makes men and women happy has been of central concern. Answers to this question have ranged from the materialist extreme of searching for happiness in external conditions to the spiritual extreme claiming that happiness is the result of a mental attitude. Psychologists have recently rediscovered this topic. Research supports both the materialist and the mentalist positions, although the latter produces the stronger findings. The article focuses in particular on one dimension of happiness: the flow experience, or the state of total involvement in an activity that requires complete concentration.

Csikszentmihalyi, M. (2003a). Good business: Leadership, flow, and the making of meaning. New York, NY: Viking.

Csikszentmihalyi, M. (2003b). Legs or wings? A reply to R. S. Lazarus [Special issue]. Psychological Inquiry, 14, 113–115. doi:10.1207/S15327965PLI1402_03

Csikszentmihalyi, M., & Csikszentmihalyi, I. S. (Eds.). (2006). A life worth living: Contributions to positive psychology. New York, NY: Oxford.

Csikszentmihalyi, M., & Nakamura, J. (2011). Positive psychology: Where did it come from, where is it going? In K. M. Sheldon, T. B. Kashdan, & M. F. Steger, (Eds.), Designing positive psychology: Taking stock and moving forward (pp. 3-8). doi:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195373585.003.0001

Dahlsgaard, K., Peterson, C., & Seligman, M. E. P. (2005). Shared virtue: The convergence of valued human strengths across culture and history. Review of General Psychology, 9(3), 203–213. doi:10.1037/1089–2680.9.3.203. Positive psychology needs an agreed–upon way of classifying positive traits as a backbone for research, diagnosis, and intervention. As a 1st step toward classification, the authors examined philosophical and religious traditions in China (Confucianism and Taoism), South Asia (Buddhism and Hinduism), and the West (Athenian philosophy, Judaism, Christianity, and Islam) for the answers each provided to questions of moral behavior and the good life. The authors found that 6 core virtues recurred in these writings: courage, justice, humanity, temperance, wisdom, and transcendence. This convergence suggests a nonarbitrary foundation for the classification of human strengths and virtues.

Dambrun, M., & Ricard, M. (2011). Self–centeredness and selflessness: A theory of self–based psychological functioning and its consequences for happiness. Review of General Psychology, 15(2), 138 –157. doi:10.1037/a0023059. The theoretical model presented in this paper emerged from several different disciplines. This model proposes that the attainment of happiness is linked to the self, and more particularly to the structure of the self. We support the idea that the perception of a structured self, which takes the form of a permanent, independent and solid entity leads to self–centered psychological functioning, and this seems to be a significant source of both affliction and fluctuating happiness. Contrary to this, a selfless psychological functioning emerges when perception of the self is flexible (i.e., a dynamic network of transitory relations), and this seems to be a source of authentic–durable happiness. In this paper, these two aspects of psychological functioning and their underlying processes will be presented. We will also explore the potential mechanisms that shape them. We will conclude with an examination of possible applications of our theory.

Damon, W. (2004). What is Positive Youth Development? [Special issue]. The Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science, 591(1), 13–24. doi:10.1177/0002716203260092. This article explores the recent approach to youth research and practice that has been called positive youth development. The author makes the case that the approach grew out of dissatisfaction with a predominant view that underestimated the true capacities of young people by focusing on their deficits rather than their developmental potentials. The article examines three areas of research that have been transformed by the positive youth approach: the nature of the child; the interaction between the child and the community; and moral growth. It concludes with the point that positive youth development does not simply mean an examination of anything that appears to be beneficial for young people. Rather, it is an approach with strong defining assumptions about what is important to look at if we are to accurately capture the full potential of all young people to learn and thrive in the diverse settings where they live.

Danna, K. (1999). Health and well–being in the workplace: A review and synthesis of the literature. Journal of Management, 25(3), 357–384. doi:10.1177/014920639902500305. Health and well–being in the workplace have become common topics in the mainstream media, in practitioner–oriented magazines and journals and, increasingly, in scholarly research journals. In this article, we first review the literature that serves to define health and well–being. We then discuss the primary factors associated with health and well–being, the consequences of low levels of health and well–being, and common methods for improving health and well–being in the workplace. Finally, we highlight important future directions for future theory, research, and practice regarding health and well–being from an organizational perspective.

Davis, C. G., & Asliturk, E. (2011). Toward a positive psychology of coping with anticipated events. Canadian Psychology/Psychologie canadienne, 52(2), 101–110. doi:10.1037/a0020177. Many people appear to be quite resilient to significant stress suggesting that they may possess an orientation to events and life that is resistant to such threats. We propose that one significant aspect of this orientation is the tendency to view adversities as something that can happen to anyone and is reflected in the tendency of people entering uncertain contexts to prepare by imagining a range of possible outcomes, both desired and undesired. This preparatory work facilitates the immediate implementation of effective problem solving and support seeking strategies should the desired outcome seem in doubt. We refer to this orientation as the realistic orientation and review evidence suggesting that such an orientation is associated with realistic– but not unrealistic– optimism and smooth adaptation to adversity.

Day, J. M. (2009). Religion, spirituality, and positive psychology in adulthood: A developmental view [Special issue]. Journal of Adult Development, 17(4), 215–229. doi:10.1007/s10804–009–9086–7. For decades, psychologists have been interested in the question whether, and how, religious and spiritual behavior, in terms of beliefs, attitudes, practices, and belonging, could be scientifically studied and assessed in terms of their relative good, or ill, for human well–being. This article considers contributions of religious commitment and spiritual practice to well–being and cognitive–developmental theoretical models and related bodies of empirical and clinical research regarding religious and spiritual development across the life cycle, with particular attention to questions related to positive adult development.

Damon, W. (2004). What is positive youth development? The Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science, 591(1), 13–24. doi:10.1177/0002716203260092. This article explores the recent approach to youth research and practice that has been called positive youth development. The author makes the case that the approach grew out of dissatisfaction with a predominant view that underestimated the true capacities of young people by focusing on their deficits rather than their developmental potentials. The article examines three areas of research that have been transformed by the positive youth approach: the nature of the child; the interaction between the child and the community; and moral growth. It concludes with the point that positive youth development does not simply mean an examination of anything that appears to be beneficial for young people. Rather, it is an approach with strong defining assumptions about what is important to look at if we are to accurately capture the full potential of all young people to learn and thrive in the diverse settings where they live.

Davidson, R. J. (2001). Toward a biology of personality and emotion. Annals of the New York, NY Academy of Sciences, 935, 191–207. Retrieved from http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11411166 For most of this past century, scholarship on the topics of personality and emotion has emerged from the humanities and social sciences. In the past decade, a remarkable change has occurred in the influence of neuroscience on the conceptualization and study of these phenomena. This article argues that the categories that have emerged from psychiatric nosology and descriptive personality theory may be inadequate, and that new categories and dimensions derived from neuroscience research may produce a more tractable parsing of this complex domain. The article concludes by noting that the discovery of these biological differences among individuals does not imply that the origins of these differences lie in heritable influences. Experiential shaping of the brain circuitry underlying emotion is powerful. The neural architecture provides the final common pathway through which culture, social factors, and genetics all operate together.

Davis, K. B. (1929). Factors in the sex life of twenty-two hundred women. New York, NY: Harper.

Deci, E. (1985). The general causality orientations scale: Self–determination in personality. Journal of Research in Personality, 19(2), 109–134. doi:10.1016/0092–6566(85)90023–6. This paper describes the development and validation of a general causality orientations scale. Causality orientations are conceptualized as relatively enduring aspects of people that characterize the source of initiation and regulation, and thus the degree of self–determination, of their behavior. Three orientations—autonomy, control, and impersonal—are measured by the three subscales of the instrument. Individuals are given a score on each orientation, thus allowing the use of the theoretically appropriate subscale (or, in some cases, a combination of subscales) to predict affects, cognitions, and behaviors. The scale was shown to have internal consistency and temporal stability. The orientations were shown to fit appropriately into a nomological network of constructs and to relate to various behaviors that were hypothesized to be theoretically relevant.

Deci, E. L., Eghrari, H., Patrick, B. C., & Leone, D. R. (1994). Facilitating internalization: The self–determination theory perspective. Journal of Personality, 62(1), 119–142. doi:10.1111/j.1467–6494.1994.tb00797.x. Self–determination theory (Deci & Ryan, 1985) posits that (a) people are inherently motivated to internalize the regulation of uninteresting though important activities; (b) there are two different processes through which such internalization can occur, resulting in qualitatively different styles of self–regulation; and (c) the social context influences which internalization process and regulatory style occur. The two types of internalization are introjection, which entails taking in a value or regulatory process but not accepting it as one's own, and integration, through which the regulation is assimilated with one's core sense of self. Introjection results in internally controlling regulation, whereas integration results in self–determination. An experiment supported our hypothesis that three facilitating contextual factors—namely, providing a meaningful rationale, acknowledging the behaver's feelings, and conveying choice—promote internalization, as evidenced by the subsequent self–regulation of behavior. This experiment also supported our expectation that when the social context supports self–determination, integration tends to occur, whereas when the context does not support self–determination, introjection tends to occur.

Deci, E. L., & Ryan, R. M. (1987). The support of autonomy and the control of behavior. Journal of Personality And Social Psychology, 53(6), 1024–37. doi:10.1037/0022–3514.53.6.1024 In this article we suggest that events and contexts relevant to the initiation and regulation of intentional behavior can function either to support autonomy (i.e., to promote choice) or to control behavior (i.e., to pressure one toward specific outcomes). Research herein reviewed indicates that this distinction is relevant to specific external events and to general interpersonal contexts as well as to specific internal events and to general personality orientations. That is, the distinction is relevant whether one's analysis focuses on social psychological variables or on personality variables. The research review details those contextual and person factors that tend to promote autonomy and those that tend to control. Furthermore, it shows that autonomy support has generally been associated with more intrinsic motivation, greater interest, less pressure and tension, more creativity, more cognitive flexibility, better conceptual learning, a more positive emotional tone, higher self–esteem, more trust, greater persistence of behavior change, and better physical and psychological health than has control. Also, these results have converged across different assessment procedures, different research methods, and different subject populations. On the basis of these results, we present an organismic perspective in which we argue that the regulation of intentional behavior varies along a continuum from autonomous (i.e., self–determined) to controlled. The relation of this organismic perspective to historical developments in empirical psychology is discussed, with a particular emphasis on its implications for the study of social psychology and personality.

Deci, E., & Ryan, R. (2000). The "what" and "why" of goal pursuits: Human needs and the self–determination of behavior. Psychological Inquiry, 11(4), 227–268. doi:10.1207/S15327965PLI1104_01. Self–determination theory (SDT) maintains that an understanding of human motivation requires a consideration of innate psychological needs for competence, autonomy, and relatedness. We discuss the SDT concept of needs as it relates to previous need theories, emphasizing that needs specify the necessary conditions for psychological growth, integrity, and well–being. This concept of needs leads to the hypotheses that different regulatory processes underlying goal pursuits are differentially associated with effective functioning and well–being and also that different goal contents have different relations to the quality of behavior and mental health, specifically because different regulatory processes and different goal contents are associated with differing degrees of need satisfaction. Social contexts and individual differences that support satisfaction of the basic needs facilitate natural growth processes including intrinsically motivated behavior and integration of extrinsic motivations, whereas those that forestall autonomy, competence, or relatedness are associated with poorer motivation, performance, and well–being. We also discuss the relation of the psychological needs to cultural values, evolutionary processes, and other contemporary motivation theories.

Deci, E. L., & Ryan, R. M. (2011). Levels of analysis, regnant causes of behavior and well-being: The role of psychological needs. Psychological Inquiry, 22(1), 17-22. doi:10.1080/1047840X.2011.545978

Deci, E. L., & Vansteenkiste, M. (2004). Self–determination theory and basic need satisfaction: Understanding human development in positive psychology. Ricerche di Psicologia, 27(1), 23–40. Retrieved May 29, 2011, from http://psycnet.apa.org/psycinfo/2004–19493–002. Positive Psychology has focused attention on positive human experiences and healthy outcomes, which is an important step toward a fuller understanding of human functioning in the social world. We argue, however, that the positive psychology movement has not gone far enough in specifying a meta–theoretical basis for a true positive psychology and that a full understanding of optimal experience and healthy development can not be achieved without relating those processes and outcomes to non–optimal experiences and diminished functioning. In this article we discuss self–determination theory, specifying an organismic–dialectical meta–theory and suggesting that the concept of basic psychological needs provides a useful basis for predicting whether the social environment will support optimal functioning or will, alternatively, promote maladaptation and ill–being.

Diener, E. (2000). Subjective well–being: The science of happiness and a proposal for a national index [Special issue]. American Psychologist, 55(1), 34–43. doi:10.1037//0003–066X.55.1.34. One area of positive psychology analyzes subjective well–being (SWB), people's cognitive and affective evaluations of their lives. Progress has been made in understanding the components of SWB, the importance of adaptation and goals to feelings of well–being, the temperament underpinnings of SWB, and the cultural influences on well–being. Representative selection of respondents, naturalistic experience sampling measures, and other methodological refinements are now used to study SWB and could be used to produce national indicators of happiness.

Diener, E. (2003). What is positive about positive psychology: The curmudgeon and Pollyanna [Special issue]. Psychological Inquiry, 14, 115–120. doi:10.1207/S15327965PLI1402_03

Diener, E. (2009). Assessing well–being: The collected works of Ed Diener. Social Indicators Research Series, Volume 39. The Netherlands, Springer.

Diener, E. (2009). Culture and well–being:The collected works of Ed Diener. Social Indicators Research Series, Volume 38. The Netherlands: Springer

Diener, E. (2009). The science of well–being: The collected works of Ed Diener. Social Indicators Research Series, Volume 37. The Netherlands: Springer.

Diener, E., & Biswas–Diener, R. (2008). Happiness: Unlocking the mysteries of psychological wealth. Malden MA: Blackwell.

Diener, E., & Diener, C. (1996). Most people are happy. Psychological Science, 7(3), 181–185. doi:10.1111/j.1467–9280.1996.tb00354.x. Myers and Diener (1995) asked "Who is happy?" but examined the question of who is more and who is less happy. In fact, most people report a positive level of subjective well–being (SWB), and say that they are satisfied with domains such as marriage, work, and leisure. People in disadvantaged groups on average report positive well–being, and measurement methods in addition to self–report indicate that most people's affect is primarily pleasant. Cross–national data suggest that there is a positive level of SWB throughout the world, with the possible exception of very poor societies. In 86% of the 43 nations for which nationally representative samples are available, the mean SWB response was above neutral. Several hypotheses to explain the positive levels of SWB are discussed.

Diener, E., Fujita, F., Tay, L., & Biswas-Diener, R. (2011). Purpose, Mood, and Pleasure in Predicting Satisfaction Judgments. Social Indicators Research, 105, 333-341. doi:10.1007/s11205-011-9787-8 We examined the extent to which satisfaction with life, with one's self, and with one's day are predicted by pleasure, purpose in life, interest, and mood. In a sample of 222 college students we found that both satisfaction with life and self-esteem were best predicted by positive feelings and an absence of negative feelings, as well as purpose in life. By contrast, satisfaction with individual days was predicted by negative feelings, and very strongly predicted by positive feelings, but not by purpose in life. In predicting life satisfaction purpose in life provided a buffering effect for lower levels of mood. People high in purpose in life reported high levels of life satisfaction even with moderate levels of mood. Thus, what makes a satisfying day is different from what makes a satisfying life or self. Life and self satisfaction were predicted significantly by purpose in life even after controlling for physical pleasure and affect balance, suggesting that they are more than just hedonic variables.

Diener, E., Helliwell, J. F., & Kahneman, D. (Eds.). (2010). International differences in well-being. New York, NY: Oxford.

Diener, E., Lucas, R. E., & Scollon, C. N. (2006). Beyond the hedonic treadmill: revising the adaptation theory of well–being. American Psychologist, 61(4), 305–14. doi:10.1037/0003–066X.61.4.305. According to the hedonic treadmill model, good and bad events temporarily affect happiness, but people quickly adapt back to hedonic neutrality. The theory, which has gained widespread acceptance in recent years, implies that individual and societal efforts to increase happiness are doomed to failure. The recent empirical work outlined here indicates that 5 important revisions to the treadmill model are needed. First, individuals' set points are not hedonically neutral. Second, people have different set points, which are partly dependent on their temperaments. Third, a single person may have multiple happiness set points: Different components of well–being such as pleasant emotions, unpleasant emotions, and life satisfaction can move in different directions. Fourth, and perhaps most important, well–being set points can change under some conditions. Finally, individuals differ in their adaptation to events, with some individuals changing their set point and others not changing in reaction to some external event. These revisions offer hope for psychologists and policy–makers who aim to decrease human misery and increase happiness.

Diener, E., Napa–Scollon, C. K., Oishi, S., Dzokoto, V., & Suh, E. M. (2000). Positivity and the construction of life satisfaction judgments: Global happiness is not the sum of its parts. Journal of Happiness Studies, 1(2), 159–176. doi:10.1023/A:1010031813405. The present study investigated how reports of satisfaction with specific versus global domains can be used to assess a disposition towards positivity in subjective well–being reports. College students from 41 societies (N = 7167) completed measures of life satisfaction and ratings of global and specific aspects of their lives. For example, participants rated satisfaction with their education (global) and satisfaction with their professors, textbooks, and lectures (specific). It was hypothesized that global measures would more strongly reflect individual differences in dispositional positivity, that is, a propensity to evaluate aspects of life in general as good. At both the individual and national levels, positivity predicted life satisfaction beyond objective measures. Also, positivity was associated with norms about ideal life satisfaction such that countries and individuals who highly valued positive emotions were more likely to display positivity. The difference between more global versus more concrete measures of satisfaction can be used as an indirect and subtle measure of positivity.

Diener, E., Oishi, S., & Lucas, R. E. (2003). Personality, culture, and subjective well–being: Emotional and cognitive evaluations of life. Annual Review of Psychology, 54, 403–25. doi:10.1146/annurev.psych.54.101601.145056. Subjective well–being (SWB), people's emotional and cognitive evaluations of their lives, includes what lay people call happiness, peace, fulfillment, and life satisfaction. Personality dispositions such as extraversion, neuroticism, and self–esteem can markedly influence levels of SWB. Although personality can explain a significant amount of the variability in SWB, life circumstances also influence long–term levels. Cultural variables explain differences in mean levels of SWB and appear to be due to objective factors such as wealth, to norms dictating appropriate feelings and how important SWB is considered to be, and to the relative approach versus avoidance tendencies of societies. Culture can also moderate which variables most influence SWB. Although it is challenging to assess SWB across societies, the measures have some degree of cross–cultural validity. Although nations can be evaluated by their levels of SWB, there are still many open questions in this area.

Diener, E., Scollon, C. N., & Lucas, R. E. (2009). Assessing Well–Being. In E. Diener (Ed.), Social Indicators Research (Vol. 39, pp. 67–100). Dordrecht: Springer Netherlands. doi: 10.1007/978–90–481–2354–4_4. Subjective well–being, or what is popularly often called "happiness," has been of intense interest throughout human history. We review research showing that it is not a single factor, but that subjective well–being is composed of a number of separable although somewhat related variables. For example, positive feelings, negative feelings, and life satisfaction are clearly separable. In understanding the various types of subjective well–being, it is important to remember that appraisals move from immediate situations to a later recall of feelings, and then to global evaluations of life. At each stage, from momentary feelings to large global life evaluations, somewhat different processes are involved in what is called "happiness." In order to understand how to measure subjective well–being, one must understand the time course and components of the phenomenon in question, and be clear about what is most important to assess. On–line feelings are very different from global evaluations of life, although both have been studied under the rubric of subjective well–being. Although debate has focused on which type of subjective well–being should be called "true happiness," the goal of scientists is to understand each type, their relations with each other, and their causes. The future of the field depends on understanding the differences between various types of well–being, and the different and similar causes of each.

Diener, E., & Seligman, M. E. P. (2004). Beyond money toward an economy of well–being. Psychological Science in the Public Interest, 5(1), 1–31. doi:10.1111/j.0963–7214.2004.00501001.x Policy decisions at the organizational, corporate, and governmental levels should be more heavily influenced by issues related to well–being—people's evaluations and feelings about their lives. Domestic policy currently focuses heavily on economic outcomes, although economic indicators omit, and even mislead about, much of what society values. We show that economic indicators have many shortcomings, and that measures of well–being point to important conclusions that are not apparent from economic indicators alone. For example, although economic output has risen steeply over the past decades, there has been no rise in life satisfaction during this period, and there has been a substantial increase in depression and distrust. We argue that economic indicators were extremely important in the early stages of economic development, when the fulfillment of basic needs was the main issue. As societies grow wealthy, however, differences in well–being are less frequently due to income, and are more frequently due to factors such as social relationships and enjoyment at work. Important noneconomic predictors of the average levels of well–being of societies include social capital, democratic governance, and human rights. In the workplace, noneconomic factors influence work satisfaction and profitability. It is therefore important that organizations, as well as nations, monitor the well–being of workers, and take steps to improve it. Assessing the well–being of individuals with mental disorders casts light on policy problems that do not emerge from economic indicators. Mental disorders cause widespread suffering, and their impact is growing, especially in relation to the influence of medical disorders, which is declining. Although many studies now show that the suffering due to mental disorders can be alleviated by treatment, a large proportion of persons with mental disorders go untreated. Thus, a policy imperative is to offer treatment to more people with mental disorders, and more assistance to their caregivers. Supportive, positive social relationships are necessary for well–being. There are data suggesting that well–being leads to good social relationships and does not merely follow from them. In addition, experimental evidence indicates that people suffer when they are ostracized from groups or have poor relationships in groups. The fact that strong social relationships are critical to well–being has many policy implications. For instance, corporations should carefully consider relocating employees because doing so can sever friendships and therefore be detrimental to well–being. Desirable outcomes, even economic ones, are often caused by well–being rather than the other way around. People high in well–being later earn higher incomes and perform better at work than people who report low well–being. Happy workers are better organizational citizens, meaning that they help other people at work in various ways. Furthermore, people high in well–being seem to have better social relationships than people low in well–being. For example, they are more likely to get married, stay married, and have rewarding marriages. Finally, well–being is related to health and longevity, although the pathways linking these variables are far from fully understood. Thus, well–being not only is valuable because it feels good, but also is valuable because it has beneficial consequences. This fact makes national and corporate monitoring of well–being imperative. In order to facilitate the use of well–being outcomes in shaping policy, we propose creating a national well–being index that systematically assesses key well–being variables for representative samples of the population. Variables measured should include positive and negative emotions, engagement, purpose and meaning, optimism and trust, and the broad construct of life satisfaction. A major problem with using current findings on well–being to guide policy is that they derive from diverse and incommensurable measures of different concepts, in a haphazard mix of respondents. Thus, current findings provide an interesting sample of policy–related findings, but are not strong enough to serve as the basis of policy. Periodic, systematic assessment of well–being will offer policymakers a much stronger set of findings to use in making policy decisions.

Diener, E., Suh, E., & Lucas, R. (1999). Subjective well–being: three decades of progress. Psychological Bulletin, 125(2), 276–302. doi:10.1037/0033–2909.125.2.276 W. Wilson's (1967) review of the area of subjective well–being (SWB) advanced several conclusions regarding those who report high levels of "happiness." A number of his conclusions have been overturned: youth and modest aspirations no longer are seen as prerequisites of SWB. E. Diener's (1984) review placed greater emphasis on theories that stressed psychological factors. In the current article, the authors review current evidence for Wilson's conclusions and discuss modern theories of SWB that stress dispositional influences, adaptation, goals, and coping strategies. The next steps in the evolution of the field are to comprehend the interaction of psychological factors with life circumstances in producing SWB, to understand the causal pathways leading to happiness, understand the processes underlying adaptation to events, and develop theories that explain why certain variables differentially influence the different components of SWB (life satisfaction, pleasant affect, and unpleasant affect).

Dierendonck, D. V., & Mohan, K. (2006). Some thoughts on spirituality and eudaimonic well–being [Special issue]. Mental Health, Religion & Culture, 9(3), 227–238. doi:10.1080/13694670600615383. This article describes the relation between spirituality and well–being. First, we differentiate spirituality from religion by focusing on the inner attitude of living life directly related to the sacred that is not restricted to a membership of a religion. Next, a review is provided of empirical studies on the beneficial effects of spirituality on well–being. Then, spirituality is proposed as an element of eudaimonic well–being.

Dolan, P., & Peasgood, T. (2008). Measuring well‐being for public policy: Preferences or experiences [Special issue]? The Journal of Legal Studies, 37(S2), S5–S31. doi:10.1086/595676. Policy makers seeking to enhance well‐being are faced with a choice of possible measures that may offer contrasting views about how well an individual's life is going. We suggest that choice of well‐being measure should be based on three general criteria: (1) the measure must be conceptually appropriate (that is, are we measuring the right sort of concept for public policy?), (2) it must be valid (that is, is it a good measure of that concept?), and (3) it must be empirically useful (that is, does it provide information in a format that can be readily used by policy makers?). Preference‐based measures (as represented by income) are compared to experience‐based measures (as represented by subjective evaluations of life) according to these criteria. Neither set of measures meets ideal standards, but experiences do fare at least as well as preferences, and subjective evaluations perform much better than income alone as a measure of well‐being.

Donaldson, S. I., Csikszentmihalyi, M., & Nakamura, J. (Eds.). (2011). Applied positive psychology: Improving everyday life, health, schools, work, and society. New York, NY: Routledge.

Donaldson, S. I., Dollwet, M., & Rao, M. (2015). Happiness, excellence, and optimal human functioning revisited: Examining the peer-reviewed literature linked to positive psychology. The Journal of Positive Psychology, 10(3), 185-195. doi:10.1080/17439760.2014.943801 Since the original call by Seligman and Csikszentmihalyi (2000) for a new science of happiness, excellence, and optimal human functioning, there has been an explosion of activity in, acclaim for, and criticism of positive psychology. The purpose of this study was to identify and examine the peer-reviewed literature linked to the positive psychology movement. An extensive systematic review identified 1336 articles published between 1999 and 2013. More than 750 of these articles included empirical tests of positive psychology theories, principles, and interventions. The results show a fairly consistent increase in the rate of publication, and that the number of empirical studies has grown steadily over the time period. The findings demonstrate that positive psychology is a growing and vibrant sub-area within the broader discipline of psychology, committed to using the same rigorous scientific methods as other sub-areas, in pursuit of understanding well-being, excellence, and optimal human functioning. . . . Conclusion: The popularity of the positive psychology movement has garnered both energetic acclaim and harsh criticism. Much of the criticism has been wagered at the scientific basis of many of the claims being made. While the concern may be well founded when restricted to commenting on the vast popular non-peer-reviewed literature, much progress has been made by psychological scientists heeding the call for a science of positive psychology. The growing peer-reviewed scientific literature has much to say about optimal human functioning. Basic research is now being accompanied by intervention research examining the application of positive psychology theories, principles, programs, and policies. Another decade of sound empirical research promises to nudge us closer to the original vision of a better scientific understanding of the key factors that enable individuals, communities, organizations, and societies to flourish.

Driver, M. (2011). Coaching positively: Lessons for coaches from positive psychology. Berkshire, England: Open University Press.

Duckworth, A. L., Steen, T. A., & Seligman, M. E. P. (2005). Positive psychology in clinical practice. Annual Review of Clinical Psychology, 1, 629–51. doi:10.1146/annurev.clinpsy.1.102803.144154. Positive psychology is the scientific study of positive experiences and positive individual traits, and the institutions that facilitate their development. A field concerned with well–being and optimal functioning, positive psychology aims to broaden the focus of clinical psychology beyond suffering and its direct alleviation. Our proposed conceptual framework parses happiness into three domains: pleasure, engagement, and meaning. For each of these constructs, there are now valid and practical assessment tools appropriate for the clinical setting. Additionally, mounting evidence demonstrates the efficacy and effectiveness of positive interventions aimed at cultivating pleasure, engagement, and meaning. We contend that positive interventions are justifiable in their own right. Positive interventions may also usefully supplement direct attempts to prevent and treat psychopathology and, indeed, may covertly be a central component of good psychotherapy as it is done now.

Dunn, D. S. (2002). Charting new courses, generating positive momentum: A handbook for positive psychology. Journal of Social and Clinical Psychology, 21(5), 580–582. doi:10.1521/jscp.21.5.580.22623.

Dunn, E. W., Gilbert, D. T., & Wilson, T. D. (2011). If money doesn't make you happy, then you probably aren't spending it right. Journal of Consumer Psychology, 21, 115-125. doi:10.1016/j.jcps.2011.02.002 The relationship between money and happiness is surprisingly weak, which may stem in part from the way people spend it. Drawing on empirical research, we propose eight principles designed to help consumers get more happiness for their money. Specifically, we suggest that consumers should (1) buy more experiences and fewer material goods; (2) use their money to benefit others rather than themselves; (3) buy many small pleasures rather than fewer large ones; (4) eschew extended warranties and other forms of overpriced insurance; (5) delay consumption; (6) consider how peripheral features of their purchases may affect their day-to-day lives; (7) beware of comparison shopping; and (8) pay close attention to the happiness of others.

Durlak, J., & Wells, M. (1997). Primary prevention mental health programs for children and adolescents: a meta–analytic review. American Journal of Community Psychology, 25(2), 115–52. Retrieved from http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/9226860. Used meta–analysis to review 177 primary prevention programs designed to prevent behavioral and social problems in children and adolescents. Findings provide empirical support for further research and practice in primary prevention. Most categories of programs produced outcomes similar to or higher in magnitude than those obtained by many other established preventive and treatment interventions in the social sciences and medicine. Programs modifying the school environment, individually focused mental health promotion efforts, and attempts to help children negotiate stressful transitions yield significant mean effects ranging from 0.24 to 0.93. In practical terms, the average participant in a primary prevention program surpasses the performance of between 59% to 82% of those in a control group, and outcomes reflect an 8% to 46% difference in success rates favoring prevention groups. Most categories of programs had the dual benefit of significantly reducing problems and significantly increasing competencies. Priorities for future research include clearer specification of intervention procedures and program goals, assessment of program implementation, more follow–up studies, and determining how characteristics of the intervention and participants relate to different outcomes.

Dworkin, J. B., Larson, R., & Hansen, D. (2003). Adolescents' Accounts of Growth Experiences in Youth Activities. Journal of Youth and Adolescence, 32(1), 17–26. Springer. Retrieved July 17, 2011, from http://www.springerlink.com/index/M08514L376428667.pdf. Little theory and research exists on the developmental processes that occur during adolescents' participation in extracurricular and community based–activities. As a step in that direction, we conducted 10 focus groups aimed at getting high school students' descriptions of their "growth experiences" in these activities. The youth reported both personal and interpersonal processes of development. The personal experiences included experimentation and identity work, development of initiative skills such as learning to set goals and manage time, and learning strategies for emotional regulation. The interpersonal experiences included acquiring new peer relationships and knowledge, developing group social skills such as taking responsibility and how to work together as a team, and developing valuable connections to adults. Across domains, adolescents described themselves as the agents of their own development and change. Youth activities appear to be a context in which adolescents are active producers of development.

Ealy, Steven D. 2008. On happiness—Personal and political [Special issue]. Conversations on Philanthropy, V, 57–72. Retrieved from http://www.conversationsonphilanthropy.org/index.php?option=com_flexicontent&view=items&cid=74&id=49&Itemid=56

Easterlin, R. (1974). Does economic growth improve the human lot?" In P. A. David and M. W. Reder, (Eds.), Nations and households in economic growth: Essays in honor of Moses Abramovitz (pp. 89–125). New York, NY: Academic Press.

Easterlin, R. A. (2004). The economics of happiness. Daedalus, 133(2), 26-33. doi:10.1162/001152604323049361

Easterlin, R. (2006). Life Cycle Happiness and its sources: Intersections of psychology, economics, and demography. Journal of Economic Psychology, 27(4), 463–482. Retrieved from http://linkinghub.elsevier.com/retrieve/pii/S0167487006000407.

Easterlin, R. A. (2009). Lost in transition: Life satisfaction on the road to capitalism. Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, 71(2), 130–145. Retrieved June 29, 2011, from http://linkinghub.elsevier.com/retrieve/pii/S0167268109001085.

Easterlin, R., McVey, L. A., Switek, M., Sawangfa, O., & Zweig, J. S. (2010). The happiness–income paradox revisited. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 107(52), 22463–8. doi:10.1073/pnas.1015962107. The striking thing about the happiness–income paradox is that over the long–term––usually a period of 10 y or more––happiness does not increase as a country's income rises. Heretofore the evidence for this was limited to developed countries. This article presents evidence that the long term nil relationship between happiness and income holds also for a number of developing countries, the eastern European countries transitioning from socialism to capitalism, and an even wider sample of developed countries than previously studied. It also finds that in the short–term in all three groups of countries, happiness and income go together, i.e., happiness tends to fall in economic contractions and rise in expansions. Recent critiques of the paradox, claiming the time series relationship between happiness and income is positive, are the result either of a statistical artifact or a confusion of the short–term relationship with the long–term one.

Eggum, N. D., Eisenberg, N., Kao, K., Spinrad, T. L., Bolnick, R., Hofer, C., et al. (2011). Emotion understanding, theory of mind, and prosocial orientation: Relations over time in early childhood. The Journal of Positive Psychology, 6(1), 4–16. doi:10.1080/17439760.2010.536776. Data were collected when children were 42, 54, and 72 months of age (Ns=210, 191, and 172 for T1, T2, and T3, respectively). Children's emotion understanding (EU) and theory of mind (ToM) were examined as predictors of children's prosocial orientation within and across time. EU positively related to children's sympathy across 2.5 years, and T1 EU positively related to parent–reported prosocial orientation concurrently and across 1 year (T2). T2 ToM positively related to parents' reports of sympathy and prosocial orientation concurrently and 18 months later (T3); in contrast, T3 ToM did not relate to sympathy or prosocial orientation. T2 ToM accounted for marginally significant variance (p50.058) in T3 mother–reported prosocial orientation over and above that accounted for by T2 prosocial orientation. Fostering the development of EU and ToM may contribute to children's prosocial orientation

Ehrenreich, B. (2009). Bright–sided: How the relentless promotion of positive thinking has undermined America. [English title: Smile or die: How positive thinking fooled America and the world] New York, NY: Henry Holt.

Eicholz, Hans. 2008. Pursuing the happy society: Faculty versus positive psychology [Special issue]. Conversations on Philanthropy, V, 17–34. Retrieved from http://www.conversationsonphilanthropy.org/index.php?option=com_flexicontent&view=items&cid=74&id=49&Itemid=5

Eid, M., & Larsen, R. J. (Eds.). (2008). The science of subjective well–being. New York, NY: Guilford.

Eidelson, R., Pilisuk, M., & Soldz, S. (2011). The dark side of comprehensive soldier fitness. The American psychologist, 66(7), 643-4. doi:10.1037/a0025272

Entwistle, D. N. & Moroney, S. K. (2011). Integrative perspectives on human flourishing: The Imago Dei and positive psychology. Journal of Psychology and Theology, 39, 295-303. The field of psychology in general, and clinical psychology in particular, has historically focused on the things that go wrong in human behavior and functioning. Similarly, evangelical theology has traditionally highlighted the problem of sin and its wide-ranging consequences for human beings. Not surprisingly, this state of affairs has led to integrative efforts that concentrate on the darker side of human nature and tend to neglect what is admirable and noble in human nature. A case is made in this article that a more complete view is needed that celebrates humans' positive features as creatures who bear the image of God, while simultaneously recognizing the pervasiveness of sin and its effects. After reviewing the one-sidedness of past integrative efforts, we suggest several possibilities for relating the image of God to findings within positive psychology, before concluding with some cautions for this new endeavor.

Faragher, E. B., Cass, M., & Cooper, C. L. (2005). The relationship between job satisfaction and health: A meta–analysis. Occupational and environmental medicine, 62(2), 105–12. doi:10.1136/oem.2002.006734. A vast number of published studies have suggested a link between job satisfaction levels and health. The sizes of the relationships reported vary widely. Narrative overviews of this relationship have been published, but no systematic meta–analysis review has been conducted.

Fineman, S. (2006a). On being positive: Concerns and counterpoints. The Academy of Management Review, 31(2), 270–291. Retrieved from http://aomarticles.metapress.com/index/CUYCEM0K56DYAB7U.pdf In this article I examine the attractions and shortcomings of the "positive" neohumanisitic turn in organizational theorizing and how positivity might be developed. I evaluate positivity's moral and cultural underpinnings and claims to separate positive from negative emotions, and I explore the deployment of positiveness in HRM programs of empowerment, emotional intelligence, and fun at work. I conclude with suggestions on how positive scholarship could be reconfigured in light of the present critique and against the emancipatory ideas of critical organizational theory.

Fineman, S. (2006b). Reply Accentuating the positive? Academy of Management Review, 31(2), 306-308. Retrieved from http://ucce.ucdavis.edu/files/repositoryfiles/ca3002p2-71943.pdf In my critique of positiveness I raised a number of key concerns about the conceptualization and development of the positive perspective in organizational behavior and organizational studies. Roberts addresses some of my worries, but still leaves open some importance questions, in particular the ontological assumptions that underpin positiveness and the scope for embracing critical theory.

Fiori, K. L., Brown, E. E., Cortina, K. S., & Antonucci, T. C. (2006). Locus of control as a mediator of the relationship between religiosity and life satisfaction: Age, race, and gender differences [Special issue]. Mental Health, Religion & Culture, 9(3), 239–263. doi:10.1080/13694670600615482. Research indicates that religiosity is associated with better psychological health. However, some studies have shown negative effects of religiosity on psychological health. It was hypothesized that these contradictory findings may be due to the fact that different loci of control beliefs affect psychological health differently. The purpose of this paper is twofold: (1) to verify a model in which locus of control mediates the relationship between religiosity and life satisfaction, and (2) to examine whether this model varies by age, gender, and race. Using Structural Equation Modelling to analyze Wave 1 of the Americans' Changing Lives dataset, this study confirms the mediation model and suggests that the relationship between religiosity and locus of control varies by gender and age.

Fitzpatrick, M. R., & Stalikas, A. (2008). Integrating positive emotions into theory, research, and practice: A new challenge for psychotherapy [Special issue]. Journal of Psychotherapy Integration, 18(2), 248–258. doi:10.1037/1053–0479.18.2.248. This article elaborates on the themes and directions that emerged from a dialogue on the potential usefulness of positive emotions in psychotherapy. In defining a positive emotion, the authors propose that there are two intersecting axes of interest. The axes are emotional experience–whether something feels good or bad to the client–and therapeutic value–how helpful the emotion is to the therapeutic process. Three of the four quadrants formed by the intersection of these axes potentially contain positive emotions. Special consideration is given to the quadrant of positive experience/positive value, which has been relatively neglected until now. In this quadrant, positive emotions generate change either in their facilitating role–often in the therapeutic relationship–or as central agents of the change process. The authors conclude by considering how positive and negative emotions interact and call for careful theorizing and research to clearly understand positive emotions in psychotherapy.

Fitzpatrick, M. R., & Stalikas, A. (2008). Positive emotions as generators of therapeutic change [Special issue]. Journal of Psychotherapy Integration, 18(2), 137–154. doi:10.1037/1053–0479.18.2.137. The purpose of this article is to highlight commonalities and facilitate links between the domains of psychotherapy and positive psychology. The authors describe the Broaden–and–Build theory and suggest that it has heuristic value for understanding psychotherapeutic processes. The authors propose that broadening represents a common factor in intrapersonal therapy that contributes to many helpful change events across different psychotherapies. The upward spiral in which positive emotions and broadening feed one another enlarges current psychotherapeutic conceptualizations by suggesting that positive emotions are not just indicators but also generators of change. The positive emotion–broadening spiral offers new avenues for research and ways to understand existing research, an alternative avenue to therapeutic change, and a method to tailor therapeutic work to individual clients. It also bridges researcher, clinician, and client points of view about key change events. Links between different viewpoints enhance therapeutic work. Links across lines of theorizing and research foster interdisciplinary ties that fertilize both fields.

Folkman, S., & Moskowitz, J. T. (2003). Positive psychology from a coping perspective [Special issue]. Psychological Inquiry, 14, 121–125. doi:10.1207/S15327965PLI1402_03

Follette, W. C., Linnerooth, P. J. N., & Ruckstuhl, L. E. (2001). Positive psychology: A clinical behavior analytic perspective [Special issue]. Journal of Humanistic Psychology, 41(1), 102–134. doi:10.1177/0022167801411007. Psychology has focused too much on reducing symptoms of distress and ameliorating behavioral problems rather than attending to the rewarding, engaging, and good side of human life. This article offers a radical behavioral view of some of the epistemic issues relevant to the design of this new area of research, and it proposes a rapprochement between humanistic and behavior analytic psychology. Examples drawn from both humanistic and behavior analytic research are given to illustrate the utility of a deterministic view for a generative science of positive psychology and to offer an alternative conceptualization of control. The article considers how to design environments that evoke positive behavior from those within them and how to give individuals the skills to control their own behavior and circumstances in ways that will maximize their quality of life.

Forgeard, M. J. C., & Seligman, M. E. P. (2012). Seeing the glass half full: A review of the causes and consequences of optimism. Pratiques Psychologiques, 18, 107-120. doi:10.1016/j.prps.2012.02.002 During the past few decades, the psychological trait of optimism has garnered an increasing amount of interest from scientists, and numerous studies have now shown that optimism is associated with important benefits. The present review summarizes the main findings from this body of research. We begin by describing the two main ways in which researchers have defined and operationalized optimism, as "optimistic explanatory style" and as "dispositional optimism". Second, we provide an overview of the various studies documenting the benefits of optimism. Optimism indeed appears to be associated with higher levels of subjective well-being, better health, and more success. In addition, we describe some of the ongoing controversies in this area of research. Third, we summarize what researchers currently know about the causes of optimism, and how optimism can be fostered in adults as well as in youth. Finally, the present review highlights the adaptive nature of optimism, while recognizing that being optimistic under all circumstances may not always be best. Cultivating flexible and realistic optimism may therefore be most advantageous. We conclude by pointing out important areas of research for the future. These include continuing the search for the biological and brain substrates of optimism, and investigating the psychological and physiological benefits of adopting a flexible (as opposed to rigid) optimistic outlook on life.

Foster, S. L., & Lloyd, P. J. (2007). Positive psychology principles applied to consulting psychology at the individual and group level. Consulting Psychology Journal: Practice and Research, 59(1), 30–40. doi:10.1037/1065–9293.59.1.30. This article describes the application, at the team and individual level, of findings from the positive psychology research. An overview of this research is presented focusing on several areas generally included in the positive psychology domain: flow, appreciative inquiry, the broaden and build theory, and other strategies for increasing the experience of positive emotions and the identification and deployment of strengths. The authors propose that these applications show promise in consulting psychology engagements and may have merit when utilized by practitioners themselves.

Fowers, B. J. (2008). From continence to virtue: Recovering goodness, character unity, and character types for positive psychology [Special issue]. Theory & Psychology, 18(5), 629–653. doi:10.1177/0959354308093399. Character is central to positive psychology's efforts to understand and promote human flourishing. Despite the importance of character and ubiquitous references to Aristotle, virtue theory remains underdeveloped in positive psychology. This article elaborates three key aspects of virtue ethics for understanding flourishing: goodness, the unity of character, and character types. Positive psychologists have not developed a substantial concept of what is good, which is essential because virtues are defined as the enduring personal qualities necessary for pursuing particular goods. Positive psychologists present virtue in a fragmented manner, focusing on a few 'signature strengths,' whereas virtue ethicists generally emphasize the unity of character and the development of a full range of virtues. Because positive psychologists have not recognized the four character types in addition to virtuous character, they often misconstrue the continent character as virtuous, and many of their descriptors of the good life do not differentiate well between the virtuous and the vicious character types.

Fowler, J. H., & Christakis, N. (2008). Dynamic spread of happiness in a large social network: Longitudinal analysis over 20 years in the Framingham Heart Study. BMJ, 337a2338-a2338. doi:10.1136/bmj.a2338 Objectives To evaluate whether happiness can spread from person to person and whether niches of happiness form within social networks. Design Longitudinal social network analysis. Setting Framingham Heart Study social network. Participants 4739 individuals followed from 1983 to 2003. Main outcome measures Happiness measured with validated four item scale; broad array of attributes of social networks and diverse social ties. Results Clusters of happy and unhappy people are visible in the network, and the relationship between people's happiness extends up to three degrees of separation (for example, to the friends of one's friends' friends). People who are surrounded by many happy people and those who are central in the network are more likely to become happy in the future. Longitudinal statistical models suggest that clusters of happiness result from the spread of happiness and not just a tendency for people to associate with similar individuals. A friend who lives within a mile (about 1.6 km)and who becomes happy increases the probability that a person is happy by 25% (95% confidence interval 1% to 57%). Similar effects are seen in co-resident spouses (8%, 0.2% to 16%), siblings who live within a mile (14%, 1% to 28%), and next door neighbours (34%, 7% to 70%). Effects are not seen between coworkers. The effect decays with time and with geographical separation. Conclusions People's happiness depends on the happiness of others with whom they are connected. This provides further justification for seeing happiness, like health, as a collective phenomenon.

Franco, Z. E., Blau, K., & Zimbardo, P. G. (2011). Heroism: A conceptual analysis and differentiation between heroic action and altruism. Review of General Psychology, 15(2), 99 –113. doi:10.1037/a0022672. Heroism represents the ideal of citizens transforming civic virtue into the highest form of civic action, accepting either physical peril or social sacrifice. While implicit theories of heroism abound, surprisingly little theoretical or empirical work has been done to better understand the phenomenon. Toward this goal, we summarize our efforts to systematically develop a taxonomy of heroic subtypes as a starting point for theory building. Next we explore three apparent paradoxes that surround heroism—the dueling impulses to elevate and negate heroic actors; the contrast between the public ascription of heroic status versus the interior decision to act heroically; and apparent similarities between altruism, bystander intervention and heroism that mask important differences between these phenomena. We assert that these seeming contradictions point to an unrecognized relationship between insufficient justification and the ascription of heroic status, providing more explanatory power than risk–type alone. The results of an empirical study are briefly presented to provide preliminary support to these arguments. Finally, several areas for future research and theoretical activity are briefly considered. These include the possibility that extension neglect may play a central role in public's view of nonprototypical heroes; a critique of the positive psychology view that heroism is always a virtuous, prosocial activity; problems associated with retrospective study of heroes; the suggestion that injury or death (particularly in social sacrifice heroes) serves to resolve dissonance in favor of the heroic actor; and a consideration of how to foster heroic imagination.

Franco, Z., Friedman, H., & Arons, M. (2008). Are qualitative methods always best for humanistic psychology research? A conversation on the epistemological divide between humanistic and positive psychology [Special issue]. The Humanistic Psychologist, 36(2), 159–203. doi:10.1080/08873260802111242. The role of qualitative methods within humanistic psychology research is explored though a Web–based dialogue among the authors expressing varying, and often quite diverging, views on assorted concerns about research methodologies and their underlying epistemologies. Specifically explored is whether qualitative methods are inherently better for capturing an understanding of human experience congruent with a human science approach to research or, alternatively, whether both qualitative and quantitative approaches simply offer different, and often complementary, advantages and disadvantages. The divisiveness between humanistic and positive psychology is also explored in relationship to the former field's frequent preference for qualitative methods within a human science paradigm, in contrast to the latter field's frequent preference for quantitative methods within a positivistic science paradigm.

Frank, R. H. (2004). How not to buy happiness. Daedalus, 133(2), 69-79. doi:10.1162/001152604323049415

Franklin, S. S. (2010). The psychology of happiness: A good human life. New York, NY: Cambridge University.

Fravell, M., Nasser, K., & Cornum, R. (2011). The Soldier Fitness Tracker: Global delivery of Comprehensive Soldier Fitness. The American psychologist, 66(1), 73–6. doi:10.1037/a0021632 Carefully implemented technology strategies are vital to the success of large–scale initiatives such as the U.S. Army's Comprehensive Soldier Fitness (CSF) program. Achieving the U.S. Army's vision for CSF required a robust information technology platform that was scaled to millions of users and that leveraged the Internet to enable global reach. The platform needed to be agile, provide powerful real–time reporting, and have the capacity to quickly transform to meet emerging requirements. Existing organizational applications, such as "Single Sign–On," and authoritative data sources were exploited to the maximum extent possible. Development of the "Soldier Fitness Tracker" is the most recent, and possibly the best, demonstration of the potential benefits possible when existing organizational capabilities are married to new, innovative applications. Combining the capabilities of the extant applications with the newly developed applications expedited development, eliminated redundant data collection, resulted in the exceeding of program objectives, and produced a comfortable experience for the end user, all in less than six months. This is a model for future technology integration.

Fredrickson, B. L. (1998). What good are positive emotions? Review of General Psychology, 2(3), 300–319. doi:10.1037//1089–2680.2.3.300 This article opens by noting that positive emotions do not fit existing models of emotions. Consequently, a new model is advanced to describe the form and function of a subset of positive emotions, including joy, interest, contentment, and love. This new model posits that these positive emotions serve to broaden an individual's momentary thought–action repertoire, which in turn has the effect of building that individual's physical, intellectual, and social resources. Empirical evidence to support this broaden–and–build model of positive emotions is reviewed, and implications for emotion regulation and health promotion are discussed.

Fredrickson, B. L. (2000). Cultivating positive emotions to optimize health and well–being. Prevention & Treatment, 3(1). doi:10.1037//1522–3736.3.1.31a. This article develops the hypothesis that intervention strategies that cultivate positive emotions are particularly suited for preventing and treating problems rooted in negative emotions, such as anxiety, depression, aggression, and stress related health problems. Fredrickson's (1998) broaden–and–build model of positive emotions provides the foundation for this application. According to this model, the form and function of positive and negative emotions are distinct and complementary. Negative emotions (e.g., fear, anger, and sadness) narrow an individual's momentary thought–action repertoire toward specific actions that served the ancestral function of promoting survival. By contrast, positive emotions (e.g., joy, interest, and contentment) broaden an individual's momentary thought–action repertoire, which in turn can build that individual's enduring personal resources, resources that also served the ancestral function of promoting survival. One implication of the broaden–and–build model is that positive emotions have an undoing effect on negative emotions. By broadening the momentary thought–action repertoire, positive emotions loosen the hold that negative emotions gain on an individual's mind and body by undoing the narrowed psychological and physiological preparation for specific action. Indeed, empirical studies have shown that contentment and joy speed recovery from the cardiovascular aftereffects of negative emotions (Fredrickson & Levenson, 1998). Stepping off from these ideas and findings, a range of intervention and coping strategies are reviewed, including relaxation therapies, behavioral therapies aimed at increasing rates of pleasant activities, cognitive therapies aimed at teaching optimism, and coping strategies marked by finding positive meaning. These strategies optimize health and well–being to the extent that they cultivate positive emotions. Cultivated positive emotions not only counteract negative emotions, but also broaden individuals' habitual modes of thinking and build their personal resources for coping.

Fredrickson, B. L. (2001). The role of positive emotions in positive psychology: The broaden–and–build theory of positive emotions [Special issue]. American Psychologist, 56(3), 218–226. doi:10.1037/0003–066X.56.3.218. In this article, the author describes a new theoretical perspective on positive emotions and situates this new perspective within the emerging field of positive psychology. The broaden–and–build theory posits that experiences of positive emotions broaden people's momentary thought–action repertoires, which in turn serves to build their enduring personal resources, ranging from physical and intellectual resources to social and psychological resources. Preliminary empirical evidence supporting the broaden–and–build theory is reviewed, and open empirical questions that remain to be tested are identified. The theory and findings suggest that the capacity to experience positive emotions may be a fundamental human strength central to the study of human flourishing.

Fredrickson, B. L. (2004). The broaden–and–build theory of positive emotions. Philosophical transactions of the Royal Society of London. Series B, Biological sciences, 359(1449), 1367–78. doi:10.1098/rstb.2004.1512. The broaden–and–build theory describes the form and function of a subset of positive emotions, including joy, interest, contentment and love. A key proposition is that these positive emotions broaden an individual's momentary thought–action repertoire: joy sparks the urge to play, interest sparks the urge to explore, contentment sparks the urge to savour and integrate, and love sparks a recurring cycle of each of these urges within safe, close relationships. The broadened mindsets arising from these positive emotions are contrasted to the narrowed mindsets sparked by many negative emotions (i.e. specific action tendencies, such as attack or flee). A second key proposition concerns the consequences of these broadened mindsets: by broadening an individual's momentary thought–action repertoire––whether through play, exploration or similar activities––positive emotions promote discovery of novel and creative actions, ideas and social bonds, which in turn build that individual's personal resources; ranging from physical and intellectual resources, to social and psychological resources. Importantly, these resources function as reserves that can be drawn on later to improve the odds of successful coping and survival. This chapter reviews the latest empirical evidence supporting the broaden–and–build theory and draws out implications the theory holds for optimizing health and well–being.

Fredrickson, B. (2009). Positivity: Groundbreaking research reveals how to embrace the hidden strength of positive emotions, overcome negativity, and thrive. New York, NY: Crown.

Fredrickson, B. L., & Losada, M. F. (2005). Positive affect and the complex dynamics of human flourishing. The American psychologist, 60(7), 678–86. doi:10.1037/0003–066X.60.7.678. Extending B. L. Fredrickson's (1998) broaden–and–build theory of positive emotions and M. Losada's (1999) nonlinear dynamics model of team performance, the authors predict that a ratio of positive to negative affect at or above 2.9 will characterize individuals in flourishing mental health. Participants (N = 188) completed an initial survey to identify flourishing mental health and then provided daily reports of experienced positive and negative emotions over 28 days. Results showed that the mean ratio of positive to negative affect was above 2.9 for individuals classified as flourishing and below that threshold for those not flourishing. Together with other evidence, these findings suggest that a set of general mathematical principles may describe the relations between positive affect and human flourishing.

Fredrickson, B. L., Mancuso, R. A., Branigan, C., & Tugade, M. M. (2000). The undoing effect of positive emotions. Motivation and Emotion, 24(4), 237–258. doi:10.1023/A:1010796329158 Positive emotions are hypothesized to undo the cardiovascular aftereffects of negative emotions. Study 1 tests this undoing effect. Participants (n=170) experiencing anxiety–induced cardiovascular reactivity viewed a film that elicited (a) contentment, (b) amusement, (c) neutrality, or (d) sadness. Contentment–eliciting and amusing films produced faster cardiovascular recovery than neutral or sad films did. Participants in Study 2 (n = 185) viewed these same films following a neutral state. Results disconfirm the alternative explanation that the undoing effect reflects a simple replacement process. Findings are contextualized by Fredrickson's broaden–and–build theory of positive emotions

Friedman, H. (2008). Humanistic and positive psychology: The methodological and epistemological divide [Special issue]. The Humanistic Psychologist, 36(2), 113–126. doi:10.1080/08873260802111036. Humanistic and positive psychology both focus on similar concerns, but have differences regarding methodology and epistemology. In terms of methodology, humanistic psychologists tend to prefer qualitative over quantitative approaches, whereas positive psychologists tend to hold the opposite preference. Likewise, in terms of epistemology, humanistic psychologists tend to prefer postpositivism, whereas positive psychologists tend to prefer logical positivism. However, much of the perceived differences between humanistic and positive psychology have been based on generalizations that do not hold in every case, notably that humanistic psychology has rich quantitative research traditions, and positive psychology does contain some qualitative approaches. Methodological and epistemological pluralism is presented as a way to bring together these closely related, but now largely separate, areas of psychology.

Friedman, H. (2009, September 2). Positive Psychology From A to W [Review of the Encyclopedia of positive psychology] PsycCRITIQUES, 54(35) Article 7. Retrieved from: http://psqtest.typepad.com/blogPostPDFs/200909363_psq_54–35_PositivePsychologyFromAtoW.pdf

Friedman, H. (2011). Itʼs premature to write the obituary for humanistic psychology: Comments on humanistic psychology for the 50th anniversary of the Journal of Humanistic Psychology. Journal of Humanistic Psychology. doi:10.1177/0022167811409043.Humanistic psychology has often been misportrayed as obsolete, especially by some positive psychologists who have tended to minimize their humanistic roots and to co–opt the humanistic psychology agenda through unfairly accusing it of various errors while pursuing a narrowed version of humanistic psychology. Through this distancing from and denigration of humanistic psychology, positive psychology has garnered considerable benefits that might have otherwise inured to humanistic psychology, including attracting many talented students and scholars, gaining lucrative funding, and receiving ample media attention. Consequently, humanistic psychology needs to explicitly challenge such attacks to remain viable, as well as to continue to be innovative in fostering a holistic perspective in diverse areas of psychology, including methodology and neurobiology, which are discussed as examples.

Friedman, H. L., & Robbins, B. D. (2012). The negative shadow cast by positive psychology: Contrasting views and implications of humanistic and positive psychology on resiliency. The Humanistic Psychologist, 40(1), 87-102. doi:10.1080/08873267.2012.643720 Resiliency is the ability to survive, or even thrive, during adversity. It is a key construct within both humanistic and positive psychology, but each sees it from a contrasting vantage. Positive psychology decontextualizes resilience by judging it as a virtue regardless of circumstance, while humanistic psychology tends to view it in a more holistic way in relationship to other virtues and environmental affordances, clarifying how resiliency can actually be either a virtue or a vice depending upon circumstances. Adolf Hitler is presented as an example of a resilient person who would not be seen as virtuous, and the US Army Comprehensive Soldier Fitness study training warfighters in resiliency illustrates possible ethical problems with a decontextualized view of resiliency

Froh, J. J. (2004). Truth be told. NYS Psychologist, (May/June), 18–20. Martin E. P. Seligman, in his 1998 APA Presidential Address, is said to have introduced positive psychology to the American Psychological Association. However, overwhelming evidence suggests that the principal components of positive psychology date back at least to William James. More recently, Abraham Maslow spoke of a psychology in which attention should be given not only to what is, but also to what could be. Maslow even used the words "positive psychology" for a chapter title in the 1950s. Contemporary positive psychologists seem to have distanced themselves from Maslow's humanistic approach largely because they believe that its experiential methodology lacks scientific rigor. It is argued here that positive psychology will only self–actualize when it embraces its history.

Froh, J. J. (2011). Thriving in youth: Age–old wisdom, new to science. The Journal of Positive Psychology, 6(1), 1–3. doi:10.1080/17439760.2011.536654.

Froman, L. (2010). Positive psychology in the workplace [Special issue]. Journal of Adult Development, 17(2), 59–69. doi:10.1007/s10804–009–9080–0. An economy in a downward spiral, rising unemployment, anxieties about future job loss, lack of access to affordable health care, a crisis in the financial industry, and declining consumer confidence are among some of the challenges creating significant stress in the lives of workers and their families. What impact are these stressors having on the day–to–day lives of people in the workplace? What role do concepts of positive psychology have in helping people to not only cope more effectively, but open their hearts and minds to move forward with newfound confidence, resilience, determination, hope, and vision for a better future? How can workers and their organizations create a more positive and proactive workplace that bridges economic and human goals? The purpose of this article is to examine these questions through an integrative analysis of conceptual and empirical approaches to positive organizational behavior and outcomes. Theory and research covering such areas as self–determining behavior patterns, emotional intelligence, psychologic capital, innovation, and workplace change are described, analyzed, and applied to individuals, groups, and the overall organizational system. These themes come together through the concept of a virtuous organization. These organizations have cultures infused with a strong ethical–moral foundation and leaders who bring out the best of their employees. Organizations of virtue strive to do well by doing good and strive to do good by doing well. These organizations succeed by having multiple bottom lines, not just economic ones. As such, they bridge the goals of economic development with human development.

Frydenberg, E., Lewis, R., Kennedy, G., Ardila, R., Frindte, W., & Hannoun, R. (2003). Coping With Concerns: An Exploratory Comparison of Australian , Colombian , German , and Palestinian Adolescents. Journal of Youth and Adolescence, 32(1), 59–66. Springer. Retrieved July 17, 2011, from http://www.springerlink.com/index/P0KN234M37681662.pdf. Consistent with an emphasis on positive psychology, and on ability rather than deficit, this study of adolescents in 4 communities sought to examine how young people cope with their concerns. Samples of Australian, Colombian, German, and Palestinian students completed the general form of the Adolescent Coping Scale, an 80–item instrument used to measure coping. A comparison of young people's usage of 3 coping styles and 18 coping strategies within these communities indicated that Palestinian youth report greater usage of all but three strategies (namely, physical recreation, relaxation, and tension reduction), and German youth report the least usage of 2/3 of the strategies assessed. Both Palestinian and Colombian youth were noted to utilize more seek to belong, focus on the positive, social action, solving the problem, seeking spiritual support, and worry than were German or Australian adolescents. When the relative usage of coping strategies within national settings was considered, some noticeable differences were apparent. For example it was found that regardless of the national setting young people reported most frequent use of working hard and use of problem solving strategies. When it comes to more culturally determined activities such as physical recreation, the Australian and German students ranked this strategy more highly in their coping repertoires than do the Colombians, and more noticeably, the Palestinian students. For example, although physical recreation is ranked as the second most commonly used strategy for the German sample, it is ranked 16th by the Palestinians. The study demonstrates the importance of identifying coping strategies that are reflective of each community under investigation. Similarity in coping cannot be assumed across different student populations. Consequently caution needs to be exercised when importing coping programs from one community to another.

Gable, S. L., & Haidt, J. (2005). What (and why) is positive psychology [Special issue]? Review of General Psychology, 9(2), 103–110. doi:10.1037/1089–2680.9.2.103. Positive psychology is the study of the conditions and processes that contribute to the flourishing or optimal functioning of people, groups, and institutions. In this brief introduction, the authors give examples of current work in positive psychology and try to explain why the positive psychology movement has grown so quickly in just 5 years. They suggest that it filled a need: It guided researchers to understudied phenomena. The authors close by addressing some criticisms and shortcomings of positive psychology, such as the relative lack of progress in studying positive institutions.

Gallagher, M. W., Lopez, S. J., & Preacher, K. J. (2009). The hierarchical structure of well–being. Journal of personality, 77(4), 1025–50. doi:10.1111/j.1467–6494.2009.00573.x Theories of hedonic, eudaimonic, and social well–being provide 3 extensively studied models for explaining flourishing mental health. Few studies have examined whether these models can be integrated into a comprehensive structure of well–being. The present study builds upon previous theoretical and empirical work to determine the complex relationships among these 3 models of well–being. Confirmatory factor analysis techniques were used to test a series of models in order to (a) confirm the proposed latent structures of hedonic, eudaimonic, and social well–being and (b) examine whether these models could be successfully integrated into a hierarchical structure of well–being. In 2 large samples, results supported the proposed latent structures of hedonic, eudaimonic, and social well–being and indicated that the various components of well–being could be represented most parsimoniously with 3 oblique second–order constructs of hedonic, eudaimonic, and social well–being.

Garbarino, J. (2011). The positive psychology of personal transformation: Leveraging resilience for life change. New York, NY: Springer.

Gardner, H., Csikszentmihalyi, M., & Damon, W. (2001). Good work: When excellence and ethics meets. New York, NY: Basic.

Garnett, R. F., Jr. (2008). Positive psychology and philanthropy: Reclaiming the virtues of classical liberalism [Special issue]. Conversations on Philanthropy, V, 1–16. Retrieved from http://www.conversationsonphilanthropy.org /index.php?option=com_flexicontent&view=items&cid=74&id=49&Itemid=56

Gavin, W. J., & Pawelski, J. O. (2004, Summer). James's "pure experience" and Csikszentmihalyi's "flow": Existential event or methodological postulate? Streams of William James, 6(2), 11-16. Retrieved from http:// williamjamesstudies.org/streams.html

Gentry, W. D. (2008). Happiness for dummies.Hoboken, NJ: Wiley.

Giannopoulos, V. L., & Vella–Brodrick, D. a. (2011). Effects of positive interventions and orientations to happiness on subjective well–being. The Journal of Positive Psychology, 6(2), 95–105. doi:10.1080/17439760.2010.545428. This study examined the effects of positive interventions and orientations to happiness on well–being. Participants were 218 self–selected adults randomly assigned to one of four positive interventions (pleasure, engagement, meaning or a combination), or daily events or no intervention control groups. Participants completed the Mental Health Continuum–Short Form and Orientations to Happiness Questionnaire. Analysis of variance results supported the hypothesis that well–being would significantly increase for participants in all intervention groups with those in the meaning, engagement, pleasure and combination groups showing larger increases than those in the control groups. Contrary to expectations, the control group also showed an increase in well–being. The prediction that participants' dominant orientation to happiness would influence the success of the positive interventions in increasing well–being was supported at post–intervention but not at follow–up. Findings support the effectiveness of positive interventions in increasing well–being and underscore the importance of including individual difference factors such as Orientations to Happiness.

Giardini, A., & Frese, M. (2008). Linking service employeesʼ emotional competence to customer satisfaction: A multilevel approach [Special issue]. Journal of Organizational Behavior, 29(2), 155–170. doi:10.1002/job.509. This study investigates the role of the positive organizational behavior (POB) concept of emotional competence for the effective management of participants' affect in service encounters and customers' assessments about the encounter. We developed and tested a two–level model in which service employees' emotional competence is related to both service employees' and customers' state positive affect. Customers' positive affect, in turn, is related to customers' specific and general evaluations of the service rendered. A total of 394 service encounters involving 53 financial consultants of a bank were assessed. Data were analyzed by a combination of path analysis and hierarchical linear modeling (HLM), and the results support large parts of the model. More specifically, employees' emotional competence was related to customer evaluations through their own positive affective state during the encounter as well as through a direct link to the customer evaluations of the encounter.

Gilbert, D. (2006). Stumbling on Happiness. Toronto, Canada: Vintage.

Gilbreath, B., & Benson, P. G. (2004). The contribution of supervisor behaviour to employee psychological well–being. Work & Stress, 18(3), 255–266. doi:10.1080/02678370412331317499. Many employees affirm that supervisors affect employee well–being, and research has demonstrated associations between supervisor behaviour and employee psychological well–being. However, what hasn't been clear is the extent to which the association with supervisor behaviour compares with that of other variables known to affect well–being. This exploratory study addresses that issue. Our hypothesis was that supervisor behaviour can contribute to the prediction of psychiatric disturbance beyond the contribution of other influential variables. We created a new, questionnaire–based instrument to measure supervisor behaviour. We tested our hypothesis using stepwise regression with a convenience sample of 167 men and women working in a variety of organizations, occupations, and industries in the USA. Results supported our hypothesis: supervisor behaviour made a statistically significant contribution to the prediction of psychiatric disturbance beyond a step–one variate comprised of age, health practices, support from other people at work, support from home, stressful life events, and stressful work events. This provides additional evidence that supervisor behaviour can affect employee well–being and suggests that those seeking to create healthier workplaces should not neglect supervision. We believe that there is now ample justification for those concerned with psychosocial working conditions to consider supervisor behaviour as a potentially influential variable.

Gillham, J. E., Adams–Deutsch, Z., Werner, J., Reivich, K., Coulter–Heindl, V., Linkins, M., et al. (2011). Character strengths predict subjective well–being during adolescence. The Journal of Positive Psychology, 6(1), 31–44. doi:10.1080/17439760.2010.536773. Previous research indicates that several character strengths (e.g., gratitude, optimism, persistence, and self regulation) correlate positively with measures of subjective well–being in adolescents. We examined whether character strengths predict future well–being. Adolescent high school students (N=149) completed the Values in Action Inventory of Strengths for Youth and measures of subjective well–being (depression, happiness, life satisfaction) at several assessments from the fall of 9th grade through the spring of their 10th grade year. In analyses controlling for the effects of other strengths, other–directed strengths (e.g., kindness, teamwork) predicted fewer symptoms of depression. Transcendence strengths (e.g., meaning, love) predicted greater life satisfaction. Social support partially mediated the relationship between strengths and depression, but did not mediate the relationship between strengths and life satisfaction. These findings indicate that strengths that build connections to people and purposes larger than the self predict future well–being.

Gillham, J., & Reivich, K. (2004). Cultivating optimism in childhood and adolescence [Special issue]. The Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science, 591(1), 146–163. doi:10.1177/0002716203260095. How do optimism and hope develop in young people? How can they be promoted? This article reviews research on the development of optimism and hope and interventions designed to build these qualities in youth. The Penn Resiliency Program is discussed as an example of a school–based intervention that may promote hope and prevent symptoms of depression and anxiety. Limits of existing studies and directions for future research are also discussed.

Gillham, J. E., & Seligman, M. E. (1999). Footsteps on the road to a positive psychology. Behaviour research and therapy, 37 Suppl 1, S163–73. Retrieved from http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/10402701. We have argued that psychology as a field has been preoccupied with the negative side of life and has left us with a view of human qualities that is warped and one–sided. Psychology is literally 'half–baked'. We need to bake the other half now. It is time for us to become equally concerned with the qualities and experiences that make life most worthwhile. A balance is needed between work that strives to relieve damage and work that endeavors to build strength. This balance is beautifully exemplified by Jack Rachman's work over the past 40 years. As an astute and compassionate clinician and researcher, Jack developed and evaluated effective treatments for some of the most debilitating anxiety disorders. At the same time, he was impressed by the resiliency of his clients and the courage they exhibited daily. His observations and studies of courage have helped to launch a systematic science of human strengths. They are giant footsteps on the road to a positive psychology.

Gillham, J. E., Shatte, A. J., Reivich, K. J., & Seligman, M. E. P. (2001). Optimism, pessimism, and explanatory style. In E. C. Chang, (Ed). Optimism & pessimism: Implications for theory, research, and practice (pp. 53–75). Washington, DC: American Psychological Association. doi:10.1037/10385–003. Describes the explanatory style construct of optimism, presents some of the major research findings from this literature, and discusses the theoretical relationship of explanatory style to dispositional optimism. Research exploring the association of these constructs, and the relationship of explanatory style to a variety of psychological and physical health indices, is reviewed. Finally, the authors discuss questions for future research and ways in which the investigators from one research tradition can learn from the other.

Gilman, R., Huebner, E. S., & Furlong, M. J. (2009). Handbook of positive psychology in the schools. New York, NY: Routledge.

Gilman, R., & Huebner, S. (2003). A review of life satisfaction research with children and adolescents. School Psychology Quarterly, 18(2), 192–205. doi:10.1521/scpq. An important construct in positive psychology is life satisfaction (LS). Although its importance has been recognized by some school psychologists, research findings have remained unsynthesized. In this article, theory, measurement, and correlates of LS among children and youth are reviewed. Following this review, interrelationships among LS research, positive psychology, and school psychology are discussed.

Gorin, S. S. (2010). Theory, measurement, and controversy in positive psychology, health psychology, and cancer: basics and next steps. Annals of behavioral medicine, 39(1), 43–7. doi:10.1007/s12160–010–9171–y. The aims of this commentary are two–fold: First, to amplify some of the points that Aspinwall, Tedeschi, Coyne, Tennen, and Ranchor have raised, noting the importance of a return to basics. Second, to posit next steps in theory development and methods at the intersection of health psychology, positive psychology, and cancer. Additional theory development, more applications of large prospective studies, and instrument refinements are warranted to understand the effects of positive constructs on health outcomes and adaptation to cancer. This area of research would be strengthened by studies that incorporate survival, health–related quality of life, and well–being outcome measures, using cancer registries and/or multiple raters. More observational studies are necessary. Attention to social justice questions is suggested in future studies at the intersection of these fields.

Gottman, J. M., Gottman, J. S., & Atkins, C. L. (2011). The Comprehensive Soldier Fitness program: Family skills component. The American Psychologist, 66(1), 52–7. doi:10.1037/a0021706 Field combat stress clinics and research have identified the signature event that precedes thoughts of suicide and homicide in combat soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan: a distressing personal relationship event with a stateside partner. In response to this alarming information, we have identified critical factors and precipitating incidents as well as critical social skills that form the basis for changing communication between soldiers and their stateside partners. A pilot program is described that proved effective with small groups of soldiers who were led by a male–female professional team and given structured reading and social skills training exercises based on Gottman and Silver's (1999) book The seven principles for making marriage work. Recommendations for future training are made based upon our assessment of the family issues facing the combat soldier in Iraq and Afghanistan. In conclusion, we describe the family fitness interventions and program elements of the skill building trainings within the family component of the Comprehensive Soldier Fitness program, which can be delivered via online interactive technology as well as face to face with families.

Graham, C. (2008). The economics of happiness. In S. N. Durlauf & L. E. Blume (Eds.). The New Palgrave Dictionary of Economics. Second Edition. Palgrave Macmillan. http://time.dufe.edu.cn/wencong/graham/paper1.pdf The economics of happiness assesses welfare by combining economists' and psychologists' techniques, and relies on more expansive notions of utility than does conventional economics. The research highlights factors other than income that affect well–being. It is well suited to informing questions in areas where revealed preferences provide limited information – for example, the welfare effects of inequality and of inflation and unemployment. Despite the potential contributions for policy, a note of caution is necessary because of the potential biases in survey data and the difficulties in controlling for unobservable personality traits.

Graham, C. (2011). The pursuit of happiness: An economy of well-being. Washington, DC: Brookings Institution Press.

Graham, J., Haidt, J., & Nosek, B. (2009). Liberals and conservatives rely on different sets of moral foundations. Journal of personality and social psychology, 96(5), 1029–46. doi:10.1037/a0015141. How and why do moral judgments vary across the political spectrum? To test moral foundations theory (J. Haidt & J. Graham, 2007; J. Haidt & C. Joseph, 2004), the authors developed several ways to measure people's use of 5 sets of moral intuitions: Harm/care, Fairness/reciprocity, Ingroup/loyalty, Authority/respect, and Purity/sanctity. Across 4 studies using multiple methods, liberals consistently showed greater endorsement and use of the Harm/care and Fairness/reciprocity foundations compared to the other 3 foundations, whereas conservatives endorsed and used the 5 foundations more equally. This difference was observed in abstract assessments of the moral relevance of foundation–related concerns such as violence or loyalty (Study 1), moral judgments of statements and scenarios (Study 2), "sacredness" reactions to taboo trade–offs (Study 3), and use of foundation–related words in the moral texts of religious sermons (Study 4). These findings help to illuminate the nature and intractability of moral disagreements in the American "culture war."

Graham, J., Nosek, B., Haidt, J., Iyer, R., Koleva, S., & Ditto, P. H. (2011). Mapping the moral domain. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 101(2), 366-385. doi:10.1037/a0021847 The moral domain is broader than the empathy and justice concerns assessed by existing measures of moral competence, and it is not just a subset of the values assessed by value inventories. To fill the need for reliable and theoretically grounded measurement of the full range of moral concerns, we developed the Moral Foundations Questionnaire on the basis of a theoretical model of 5 universally available (but variably developed) sets of moral intuitions: Harm/Care, Fairness/Reciprocity, Ingroup/Loyalty, Authority/Respect, and Purity/Sanctity. We present evidence for the internal and external validity of the scale and the model, and in doing so we present new findings about morality: (a) Comparative model fitting of confirmatory factor analyses provides empirical justification for a 5-factor structure of moral concerns; (b) convergent/discriminant validity evidence suggests that moral concerns predict personality features and social group attitudes not previously considered morally relevant; and (c) we establish pragmatic validity of the measure in providing new knowledge and research opportunities concerning demographic and cultural differences in moral intuitions. These analyses provide evidence for the usefulness of Moral Foundations Theory in simultaneously increasing the scope and sharpening the resolution of psychological views of morality.

Grant, A. M., & Cavanagh, M. (2007). Evidence–based coaching: Flourishing or languishing? Australian Psychologist, 42(4), 239–254. doi:10.1080/00050060701648175. Coaching and coaching psychology offer a potential platform for an applied positive psychology and for facilitating individual, organisational and social change. Experts from around the world were invited to comment on the emerging discipline of coaching psychology and the commercial coaching industry. Several key themes emerged including the potential of coaching to contribute to health promotion, social change and organisational development. There was unequivocal consensus for the need for an evidence–based approach to coaching. A review of the psychological coaching outcome literature found there have been a total of 69 outcome studies between 1980 and July 2007: 23 case studies, 34 within–subject studies and 12 between–subject studies. Only eight randomised controlled studies have been conducted. This indicates that coaching psychology is still in the early stages of development, and can be understood as an emerging or protoscientific psychological discipline. A languishing – flourishing model of coaching is described. to flourish, coaching psychology needs to remain clearly differentiated from the frequently sensationalistic and pseudoscientific facets of the personal development industry while at the same time engaging in the development of the wider coaching industry.

Green, L. S., Oades, L. G., & Grant, A. M. (2006). Cognitive–behavioral, solution–focused life coaching: Enhancing goal striving, well–being, and hope. The Journal of Positive Psychology, 1(3), 142–149. doi:10.1080/17439760600619849. Research is in its infancy in the newly emerging field of coaching psychology. This study examined the effects of a 10–week cognitive–behavioral, solution–focused life coaching group programme. Participants were randomly allocated to a life coaching group programme (n=28) or a waitlist control group (n=28). Participation in the life coaching group programme was associated with significant increases in goal striving, well–being and hope, with gains maintained up to 30 weeks later on some variables. Hope theory may explain such positive outcomes. Life coaching programmes that utilize evidence–based techniques may provide a framework for further research on psychological processes that occur in non–clinical populations who wish to make purposeful change and enhance their positive psychological functioning.

Greening, T. (2001). Commentary [Special issue]. Journal of Humanistic Psychology, 41(1), 4–7. doi:10.1177/0022167801411001.

Grinde, B. (2002). Happiness in the perspective of evolutionary psychology. Journal of Happiness Studies, 3(4), 331–354. doi:10.1023/A:1021894227295. The human capacity for positive and negative feelings is shaped by the forces of evolution, thus the evolutionary perspective should be relevant to the study of happiness. This paper attempts to identify the more pertinent innate qualities of the human brain, and discusses how the evolutionary perspective can be used to relate these qualities to the study of happiness. Two aspects of our evolutionary legacy appear to be particularly relevant: One, the consequences of discords between the present way of living and the environment of evolutionary adaptation; and two, the presence of feelings designed to influence behaviour. The purpose of the present paper is to both expand on these two aspects and thereby arrive at an evolutionary based description of happiness; and to discuss the relationship between this biological account and some current approached to the study of happiness.

Grinde, B. (2012). The Biology of Happiness, Springer Briefs in Well-Being and Quality

of Life Research Series. Dordrecht, The Netherlands: Springer. doi: 10.1007/978-94-007-4393-9_1

Gruber, J., Mauss, I. B., & Tamir, M. (2011). A dark side of happiness? How, when, and why happiness is not always good. Perspectives on Psychological Science, 6(3), 222-233. doi:10.1177/1745691611406927 Happiness is generally considered a source of good outcomes. Research has highlighted the ways in which happiness facilitates the pursuit of important goals, contributes to vital social bonds, broadens people's scope of attention, and increases well-being and psychological health. However, is happiness always a good thing? This review suggests that the pursuit and experience of happiness might sometimes lead to negative outcomes. We focus on four questions regarding this purported ''dark side'' of happiness. First, is there a wrong degree of happiness? Second, is there a wrong time for happiness? Third, are there wrong ways to pursue happiness? Fourth, are there wrong types of happiness? Cumulatively, these lines of research suggest that although happiness is often highly beneficial, it may not be beneficial at every level, in every context, for every reason, and in every variety.

Gullone, E. (2000). The biophilia hypothesis and life in the 21st century: Increasing mental health or increasing pathology? Journal of Happiness Studies, 1(3), 293–322. Springer. doi:10.1023/A:1010043827986. Wilson's biophilia hypothesis includes the claim that, as a consequence of evolution, humans have an innate tendency to focus on life and lifelike processes. A review of various literatures converges to support this central claim. One area of support for our innate affiliation with nature comes from research demonstrating increased psychological well–being upon exposure to natural features and environments. Support also comes from the strength and prevalence of phobic responses to stimuli of evolutionary significance and near absence of such responses to potentially dangerous human–made stimuli. That survival emotions of equivalent intensity and prevalence have failed to develop in response to modern life–threatening stimuli can be explained by the extremely rapid process of change and progress that has occurred post World War II and continues at an ever increasingly rapid pace. Given that our modern ways of living, as prescribed by Western industrialised culture, stand in stark contrast to our evolutionary history, it is proposed that we may currently be witnessing the beginnings of significant adverse outcomes for the human psyche.

Gunderman, Richard. 2008. Authentic flourishing [Special issue]. Conversations on Philanthropy, V, 49–56. Retrieved from http://www.conversationsonphilanthropy.org/index.php?option=com_flexicontent&view=items&cid=74&id=49&Itemid=56

Hackman, J. R. (2009). The perils of positivity. Journal of Organizational Behavior, 30(2), 309–319. doi:10.1002/job.587. The passion and productivity that characterizes research on positive organizational behavior (POB) is impressive. Yet POB research is accumulating so rapidly that it may exceed what the field's conceptual, methodological, and ideological foundation can bear. I discuss here six concerns prompted by the articles in this special issue. These concerns are (1) the emphasis of positive organizational scholarship on individual–level phenomena, (2) the ahistorical character of POB research and writing, (3) the construct validity of key concepts, (4) over–reliance on a particular research strategy, (5) implicit acceptance of fundamental flaws in how work and organizations are designed, and (6) the seductiveness of new research paradigms.

Hackman, J. R. (2009). The point of POB: Rejoinder. Journal of Organizational Behavior, 30(2), 321–322. doi:10.1002/job.588.

Haidt, J. See his website at: http://people.virginia.edu/~jdh6n/publications.html

Haidt, J. (2000). The Positive emotion of elevation. Prevention & Treatment, 3(3). The previously unstudied emotion of elevation is described. Elevation appears to be the opposite of social disgust. It is triggered by witnessing acts of human moral beauty or virtue. Elevation involves a warm or glowing feeling in the chest, and it makes people want to become morally better themselves. Because elevation increases one's desire to affiliate with and help others, it provides a clear illustration of Fredrickson's (2000) broaden–and–build model of the positive emotions.

Haidt, J. (2001). The emotional dog and its rational tail: A social intuitionist approach to moral judgment. Psychological Review, 108(4), 814–834. doi:10.1037/0033–295X.108.4.814. Research on moral judgment has been dominated by rationalist models, in which moral judgment is thought to be caused by moral reasoning. The author gives 4 reasons for considering the hypothesis that moral reasoning does not cause moral judgment; rather, moral reasoning is usually a post hoc construction, generated after a judgment has been reached. The social intuitionist model is presented as an alternative to rationalist models. The model is a social model in that it deemphasizes the private reasoning done by individuals and emphasizes instead the importance of social and cultural influences. The model is an intuitionist model in that it states that moral judgment is generally the result of quick, automatic evaluations (intuitions). The model is more consistent than rationalist models with recent findings in social, cultural, evolutionary, and biological psychology, as well as in anthropology and primatology.

Haidt, J. (2003). Elevation and the positive psychology of morality. In C. L. M. Keyes, & J. Haidt, (Eds.), Flourishing: Positive psychology and the life well lived (pp. 275–289). Washington DC: American Psychological Association.

Haidt, J. (2005, Spring/Summer). Wired to be inspired. Greater good. Retrieved from http://greatergood.berkeley.edu/greatergood/archive/2005springsummer/SpringSummer05_Haidt.pdf

Haidt, J. (2006). The happiness hypothesis: Finding modern truth in ancient wisdom. New York, NY: Basic.

Haidt, J., & Graham, J. (2007). When morality opposes justice: Conservatives have moral intuitions that liberals may not recognize. Social Justice Research, 20(1), 98–116. doi:10.1007/s11211–007–0034–z. Researchers in moral psychology and social justice have agreed that morality is about matters of harm, rights, and justice. On this definition of morality, conservative opposition to social justice programs appears to be immoral, and has been explained as a product of various non–moral processes such as system justification or social dominance orientation. In this article we argue that, from an anthropological perspective, the moral domain is usually much broader, encompassing many more aspects of social life and valuing institutions as much or more than individuals. We present theoretical and empirical reasons for believing that there are five psychological systems that provide the foundations for the worlds many moralities. The five foundations are psychological preparations for detecting and reacting emotionally to issues related to harm/care, fairness/reciprocity, ingroup/loyalty, authority/respect, and purity/sanctity. Political liberals have moral intuitions primarily based upon the first two foundations, and therefore misunderstand the moral motivations of political conservatives, who generally rely upon all five foundations.

Haidt, J., & Kesebir, S. (2010). Morality. In S. Fiske, D. Gilbert, & G. Lindzey (Eds.), Handbook of Social Psychology, 5th Edition (pp. 797–832). Hobeken, NJ: Wiley.

Haidt, J., & Morris, J. P. (2009). Finding the self in self–transcendent emotions. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 106(19), 7687–8. doi:10.1073/pnas.0903076106.

Haidt, J., Patrick Seder, J., & Kesebir, S. (2008). Hive psychology, happiness, and public policy [Special issue]. The Journal of Legal Studies, 37(S2), S133–S156. doi:10.1086/529447. We consider three hypotheses about relatedness and well‐being including the hive hypothesis, which says people need to lose themselves occasionally by becoming part of an emergent social organism in order to reach the highest levels of human flourishing. We discuss recent evolutionary thinking about multilevel selection, which offers a distal reason why the hive hypothesis might be true. We next consider psychological phenomena such as the joy of synchronized movement and the ecstatic joy of self‐loss, which might be proximal mechanisms underlying the extraordinary pleasures people get from hive‐type activities. We suggest that if the hive hypothesis turns out to be true, it has implications for public policy. We suggest that the hive hypothesis points to new ways to increase social capital and encourages a new focus on happy groups as being more than collections of happy individuals.

Hammer, J. H., & Good, G. E. (2010). Positive psychology: An empirical examination of beneficial aspects of endorsement of masculine norms. Psychology of Men & Masculinity, 11(4), 303–318. doi:10.1037/a0019056. This study explored the relations among North American masculine norms, positive psychology strengths, and psychological well–being in a sample of 250 men ranging in age from 18 to 79. Results indicate that men's greater endorsement of traditional Western masculine norms such as risk–taking, dominance, primacy of work, and pursuit of status, was associated with higher levels of personal courage, autonomy, endurance, and resilience. However, conformity to the norms of winning, emotional control, self–reliance, and pursuit of status was associated with lower levels of personal courage, grit, personal control, autonomy, and resilience. Directions for future research and implications for practice are provided.

Hannah, S. T., Woolfolk, R. L., & Lord, R. G. (2009). Leader self–structure: A framework for positive leadership. Journal of Organizational Behavior, 30(2), 269–290. doi:10.1002/job.586. We expand the conceptualization of positive leadership and hypothesize that leaders' ability to influence followers across varied complex situations will be enhanced through the development of a rich and multifaceted self–construct. Utilizing self–complexity theory and other aspects of research on self–representation, we show how the structure and structural dynamics of leaders' self–constructs are linked to their varied role demands by calling forth cognitions, affects, goals and values, expectancies, and self–regulatory plans that enhance performance. Through this process, a leader is able to bring the "right stuff" (the appropriate ensemble of attributes) to bear on and succeed in the multiple challenges of leadership. We suggest future research to develop dimensional typologies related to leadership–relevant aspects of the self and also to link individual positive self–complexity to more aggregate positive organizational processes.

Hart, K. E., & Sasso, T. (2011). Mapping the contours of contemporary positive psychology. Canadian Psychology/Psychologie canadienne, 52(2), 82–92. doi:10.1037/a0023118. This paper seeks to quantify scholarly interest in the rapidly emerging field of Positive Psychology (PP) and to empirically map the contours of the discipline using six different methodologies. Results document extraordinary growth in the last decade and confirm that scholars in this area have devoted the lion's share of their attention to two of the three 'Pillars' of PP as proposed by Seligman and Csikszentmihalyi (2000): (1) the study of positive subjective experience and (2) positive personal traits. While interest in positive institutions has been somewhat sparse, there has been increased concern with the topics of 'resilience' and eudaimonia (broadly defined). The latter developments help to dispel the myth that PP is an elite endeavour solely concerned with Pollyanna–style 'happiology' in people who find themselves in idyllic circumstances. Hopefully the results of our content analysis of the field will encourage instructors who teach PP to provide their students with a well–balanced curriculum, one that accurately reflects the heterogeneity of the field, and one that mirrors recent scholarly trends.

Harvey, J. H., & Pauwels, B. G. (2004). Modesty, humility, character strength, and positive psychology [Special issue]. Journal of social and clinical psychology, 23(5), 620–623. Guilford Publications. Retrieved July 18, 2011, from http://www.atypon–link.com/GPI/doi/abs/10.1521/jscp.23.5.620.50753.

Haybron, D. (2007). Well–being and virtue. The Journal of Ethics and Social Philosophy, 2(2), 1–27. Citeseer. Retrieved July 9, 2011, from http://citeseerx.ist.psu.edu/viewdoc/download?doi=;rep=rep1&amp;type=pdf. Conventional wisdom once held that well–being is an objective affair, something that the masses should not be expected to have a great deal of authority about. Among the more noteworthy ideas in those days was the perfectionist notion that well–being consists, at least partly, in excellence or virtue. The coming of modernity brought a more optimistic view of the individual's authority regarding matters of personal welfare, and the old objectivist orthodoxy yielded to the present age of subjectivism, where common opinion has it that what's good for people is, more or less, whatever they say it is. Crudely, nothing benefits a person, virtue included, unless it somehow answers to her wants or likes. Discontent with subjectivism has been brewing for some years now, driven by a more nuanced understanding of the considerable merits of some objectivist accounts, notably Aristotelian theories, as well as a barrage of criticism aimed at subjectivist views like the desire theory. (2) Indeed, Aristotelian views are now among the chief competitors in discussions of well–being––or, equivalently, welfare or flourishing. (3) This is a welcome development, for such work has greatly enriched contemporary reflection on well–being, helping to counter what some of us see as the trivialization of philosophical thought about the good life in the modern era. Whatever the merits of non–subjectivist accounts of well–being, however, it is less clear that the perfectionism espoused in much of this literature can be sustained. I will argue that it cannot, using the best–known example of a perfectionist theory, Aristotelianism, to show why. The discussion should concern even those with little interest in perfectionist theories, for a better understanding of the problems confronting Aristotelian perfectionism will illuminate some important points about the nature of well–being and related values.

Hayes, A. M., Beevers, C. G., Feldman, G. C., Laurenceau, J. P., & Perlman, C. (2005). Avoidance and processing as predictors of symptom change and positive growth in an integrative therapy for depression [Special issue]. International Journal of Behavioral Medicine, 12(2), 111–22. doi: 0.1207/s15327558ijbm1202_9. Depression is a leading cause of disability worldwide and can worsen the course of a variety of medical illnesses. There is a clear need to develop more potent treatments for this debilitating disorder and prevent its return. We are developing a promising psychotherapy that integrates components of current, empirically supported therapies for depression and also teaches healthy lifestyle and emotion regulation habits to promote psychological health. In the 1st open trial, growth curve analyses revealed a significant linear decrease in symptoms of depression in a sample of 29 clients who completed the therapy. Participants wrote essays about their depression each week, and the content was analyzed using a new coding system of change processes. Hierarchical linear modeling (HLM) revealed that peak levels of processing in the essays were associated with more improvement in depression and with the expression of more hope and of both negative and positive views of the self, presumably as clients explored their depressive views of self. Peak levels of avoidance were associated with less improvement in depression and with more hopelessness and negative views of the self. These preliminary results suggest possible targets of change that can facilitate symptom reduction and perhaps also promote psychological health.

Harvey, J. H. (2001). The psychology of loss as a lens to a positive psychology. American Behavioral Scientist, 44(5), 838–853. doi:10.1177/00027640121956520. This article argues for the development of a field concerned with the psychology of loss that is interdisciplinary in nature and focused on people's pervading sense of loss. The psychology of loss may be defined as broader than related fields such as traumatology, thanatology, and stress and coping. It focuses on the perception of major loss deriving from events such as death and divorce but also on this perception in connection with diverse phenomena. An important research topic for this field concerns people's imputed meanings to losses in their lives and their activities of developing stories of losses and confiding those stories to close others as they cope with the losses. This article describes basic principles of loss that may be observed across varied loss events. It is argued that this development of a psychology of loss will contribute invaluable perspective to developments in work on positive psychology.

Harvey, J. H., & Pauwels, B. G. (2003). The ironies of positive psychology [Special issue]. Psychological Inquiry, 14, 124–127. doi:10.1207/S15327965PLI1402_03

Heintzelman, S. J., & King, L. A. (2011). The local baby and the global bathwater: Circumscribed goals for the future of the multilevel personality in context model. Psychological Inquiry, 22(1), 23–25. doi:10.1080/1047840X.2011.544027.

Held, B. S., & Bohart, A. C. (2002). Introduction: The (overlooked) virtues of "unvirtuous" attitudes and 4. doi:10.1002/jclp.10092. The attitudes and behaviors examined in this special section–namely, negativity, complaining, pessimism, and "false" hope–have not typically been viewed as virtuous either in popular culture or in professional psychology. In reconsidering these attitudes and behaviors, each of the authors demonstrates how there may actually be virtue, or at least something positive, in what has typically been cast in a negative light.

Held, B. S. (2002). The tyranny of the positive attitude in America: Observation and speculation [Special issue]. Journal of Clinical Psychology, 58(9), 965–91. doi:10.1002/jclp.10093. According to both popular and professional indicators, the push for the positive attitude in America is on the rise. After considering the popular culture zeitgeist, I compare and contrast two recent professional psychology movements–those of positive psychology and postmodern therapy–both of which rest on a foundation of optimism and positive thinking despite their opposing views about a proper philosophy of science. I then present cross–cultural empirical research that calls into question the typical (North American) assumption that a positive attitude is necessary for (a sense of) well–being. I also consider findings in health psychology, clinical/counseling psychology, and organizational behavioral science, findings which call into question the assumption that accentuating the positive (and eliminating the negative) is necessarily beneficial in terms of physical and mental health. The clinical/therapeutic implications of this analysis are addressed, as I put forth my conjecture about the existence of what I call the "tyranny of the positive attitude" in the form of a question: If there indeed now exists unprecedented pressure to accentuate the positive, could it then be that the pressure itself to be happy and optimistic contributes to at least some forms of unhappiness?

Held, B. S. (2004). The negative side of positive psychology. Journal of Humanistic Psychology, 44(1), 9–46. doi:10.1177/0022167803259645. This article explores three ways in which the positive psychology movement's construction and presentation of itself are negative. First, the negative side is construed as the negative side effects of positive psychology's dominant, separatist message. Second, the negative side is construed as the negativity that can be found within the positive psychology movement. Here the author elaborates on the negative or dismissive reactions of some spokespersons for the movement to ideas or views that run counter to the movement's dominant message: (a) negativity about negativity itself, which is explored by way of research in health psychology and coping styles; and (b) negativity about the wrong kind of positivity, namely, allegedly unscientific positivity, especially that which Seligman purports to find within humanistic psychology. This constitutes an epistemological position that contributes to "reality problems" for positive psychologists. The author concludes with the implications of positive psychology's "Declaration of Independence" for psychology's much discussed fragmentation woes. She appeals to the wisdom of William James for guidance in finding a third, more positive meaning of positive psychology's negative side. This third meaning can be gleaned from a not–yet–dominant but more integrative message emerging within the movement, one compatible with the reactions of some humanistic psychologists to positive psychology.

Held, B. S. (2005). The "virtues" of positive psychology. Journal of Theoretical and Philosophical Psychology, 25(1), 1–34. doi:10.1037/h0091249. How have spokespersons for the positive psychology movement presented the movement to the public and to the profession of psychology? Moreover, what are the consequences for psychology of that presentation? These questions inform my assessment of the "virtues" of positive psychology, which I interpret in two ways. First, there are the ways in which the movement implicitly presents itself as virtuous, not least by constituting itself as a corrective to "negative psychology." Second, there are the ways in which Martin Seligman, in calling for a new and discrete scientific enterprise, promotes building "signature strengths" as routes to virtue and thus "authentic happiness." Alternative ways to conceptualize virtue and authenticity are considered, as are the epistemic problems that inhere in movements in general, and the positive psychology movement in particular.

Heller, A. S., Johnstone, T., Shackman, A. J., Light, S. N., Peterson, M. J., Kolden, G. G., Kalin, N. H., et al. (2009). Reduced capacity to sustain positive emotion in major depression reflects diminished maintenance of fronto–striatal brain activation. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 106(52), 22445–50. doi:10.1073/pnas.0910651106 Anhedonia, the loss of pleasure or interest in previously rewarding stimuli, is a core feature of major depression. While theorists have argued that anhedonia reflects a reduced capacity to experience pleasure, evidence is mixed as to whether anhedonia is caused by a reduction in hedonic capacity. An alternative explanation is that anhedonia is due to the inability to sustain positive affect across time. Using positive images, we used an emotion regulation task to test whether individuals with depression are unable to sustain activation in neural circuits underlying positive affect and reward. While up–regulating positive affect, depressed individuals failed to sustain nucleus accumbens activity over time compared with controls. This decreased capacity was related to individual differences in self–reported positive affect. Connectivity analyses further implicated the fronto–striatal network in anhedonia. These findings support the hypothesis that anhedonia in depressed patients reflects the inability to sustain engagement of structures involved in positive affect and reward.

Helson, R., & Roberts, B. W. (1994). Ego development and personality change in adulthood. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 66(5), 911–920. doi:10.1037/0022–3514.66.5.911At age 43, 90 women in a longitudinal study were classified on the basis of J. Loevinger's (Loevinger & Wessler, 1970) Sentence Completion Test into 3 levels of ego development: self–aware or below, conscientious, and individualistic or above. Retrospective multivariate analyses of variance showed that ego level was associated with differential personality change on scales of the California Psychological Inventory from ages 21–43. In a path analysis, verbal aptitude in high school, psychological mindedness in college, and stimulation of life path between ages 21 and 43 each independently predicted ego level at age 43. Accounts of difficult times that involved construction of new schemas (accommodation rather than assimilation) were associated with high ego level.

Helson, R., & Srivastava, S. (2001). Three paths of adult development: Conservers, seekers, and achievers. Journal of personality and social psychology, 80(6), 995-1010. doi:10.1037/0022-3514.80.6.995 This study examined the development of individuals whose motivations and skills led them to develop in different but equally positive ways. C. D. Ryff's (1989) scales for Environmental Mastery (EM) and Personal Growth (PG) were used to identify three configurations of positive mental health in 111 women of the Mills Longitudinal Study: Achievers, high on both scales; Conservers, high on EM, low on PG; and Seekers, high on PG, low on EM. Each pattern showed a distinctive profile of strengths on four criteria of maturity--competence, generativity, ego development, and wisdom--and each was predicted by distinctive features of positive and negative emotionality, identity processes, and change in self-control across 31 years of adulthood. Identity at age 43 mediated the influence of personality at age 21 in predicting positive mental health pattern at age 60.

Henry, J. (2004). Positive and creative organization. In P. A. Linley & S. Joseph (Eds.), Positive psychology in practice (pp. 269–286). New York, NY: Wiley.

Hershberger, P. J. (2005). Prescribing happiness: positive psychology and family medicine. Family Medicine, 37(9), 630–634. Retrieved from http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16193425. Although mental health promotion is consistent with the philosophy of family medicine, it is largely unclear what behaviors or interventions comprise mental health promotion in practice. A recent effort in psychology, known as "positive psychology," has endeavored to better understand happiness, meaning in life, character strengths, and how these all can be developed. Because happiness is associated with multiple benefits, including better health, it behooves family physicians to become familiar with and incorporate positive psychology into their practices. This article reviews examples of the work in positive psychology, including gratitude, capitalization, "satisficing," character strengths, and learned optimism. Potential applications of each area in medical education, physician well–being, and patient care are described.

Hicks, J. A., Cicero, D. C., Trent, J., Burton, C. M., & King, L. A. (2010). Positive affect, intuition, and feelings of meaning. Journal of personality and social psychology, 98(6), 967–79. doi:10.1037/a0019377. Subjective rationality, or the feeling of meaning, was identified by William James (1893) as a central aspect of the non–sensory fringe of consciousness. Three studies examined the interaction of positive affect (PA) and individual differences in intuitive information processing in predicting feelings of meaning for various stimuli and life events. In Study 1 (N = 352), PA and intuition interacted to predict understanding for ambiguous quotes and abstract artwork. In Study 2 (N = 211), similar interactions were found for feelings of meaning for fans after their football team lost a conference championship game and for individuals not directly affected by Hurricane Katrina in events surrounding the hurricane. In Study 3 (N = 41), induced PA interacted with individual differences in intuition in predicting accuracy for coherence judgments for loosely related linguistic triads. Intuitive individuals in the positive mood condition recognized coherent triads more accurately than did other participants. Results are discussed in terms of the role of individual differences in intuitive information processing in the relationship of PA to cognition.

Hicks, J. A., & King, L. A. (2007). Meaning in life and seeing the big picture: Positive affect and global focus. Cognition & Emotion, 21(7), 1577–1584. doi:10.1080/02699930701347304. Research has demonstrated that there is a strong relationship between positive affect (PA) and meaning in life. It has been suggested that this relationship may exist, in part, because PA facilitates a global cognitive focus, allowing a person to see "the big picture" of his or her life. Although it is possible global focus mediates the relationship between PA and meaning in life, it is also possible that global focus moderates this relationship by either enhancing or weakening the relationship. The present study tested these mediational and moderational hypotheses. In this study, participants completed measures of PA, meaning in life, and a global/local focus task. Results showed that global focus did not mediate the relationship between PA and meaning in life. Instead, global focus moderated the relationship, such that those who had higher global focus were actually less likely to base their meaning in life judgments on PA. Implications for understanding the relation of PA, global focus, and meaning in life are discussed.

Hicks, J. A., & King, L. A. (2009). Positive mood and social relatedness as information about meaning in life. The Journal of Positive Psychology, 4(6), 471–482. doi:10.1080/17439760903271108. As with other measures of subjective well–being, self–reports of meaning in life (MIL) can be influenced by transient, contextual factors. Further, the sources of information used in judging MIL can vary depending on their relevance and cognitive accessibility. This study examined the effects of differing instructions on the sources of information used to judge MIL. Participants (N = 103) completed measures of positive affect (PA), religious commitment, and the satisfaction of the needs for competency, autonomy, and relatedness and then were randomly assigned to complete a measure of MIL rapidly, thoughtfully, or using typical instructions. Results showed that condition moderated reliance on PA, autonomy and social relatedness need satisfaction: PA was a stronger predictor of MIL in the thoughtful condition while autonomy and relatedness were more strongly related to MIL in the rapid condition. Implications for our understanding of MIL and future directions are discussed.

Hicks, J. A., Schlegel, R. J., & King, L. A. (2010). Social threats, happiness, and the dynamics of meaning in life judgments. Personality & social psychology bulletin, 36(10), 1305–17. doi:10.1177/0146167210381650. Four studies examined social relatedness and positive affect (PA) as alternate sources of information for judgments of meaning in life (MIL). In Studies 1 through 3 (total N = 282), priming loneliness increased reliance on PA and decreased reliance on social functioning in MIL judgments. In Study 4 (N = 138), daily assessments of PA, relatedness needs satisfaction (RNS), and MIL were obtained every 5 days over 20 days. Multilevel modeling showed that on days when RNS was low, PA was strongly related to MIL. Results suggest the dynamic ways that social relationships and PA inform judgments of MIL. Informational and motivational accounts of these results are discussed.

Hicks, J. A., Trent, J., Davis, W. E., & King, L. A. (2011). Positive affect, meaning in life, and future time perspective: An application of socioemotional selectivity theory. Psychology and aging. doi:10.1037/a0023965. Four studies tested the prediction that positive affect (PA) would relate more strongly to meaning in life (MIL) as a function of perceived time limitations. In Study 1 (N = 360), adults completed measures of PA and MIL. As predicted, PA related more strongly to MIL for older, compared to younger, participants. In Studies 2 and 3, adults (N = 514) indicated their current position in their life span, and rated their MIL. PA, whether naturally occurring (Study 2) or induced (Study 3), was a stronger predictor of MIL for individuals who perceived themselves as having a limited amount of time left to live. Finally, in Study 4 (N = 98) students completed a measure of PA, MIL, and future time perspective (FTP). Results showed that PA was more strongly linked to MIL for those who believed they had fewer opportunities left to pursue their goals. Overall, these findings suggest that the experience of PA becomes increasingly associated with the experience of MIL as the perception of future time becomes limited. The contribution of age related processes to judgments of well–being are discussed. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2011 APA, all rights reserved).

Hodges, T. D., & Clifton, D. (2004). Strengths–based development in practice. In P. A. Linley & S. Joseph (Eds.), Positive psychology in practice (pp. 256–269). New York, NY: Wiley.

Hogan, R., & Kaiser, R. B. (2005). What we know about leadership [Special issue]. Review of General Psychology, 9(2), 169–180. doi:10.1037/1089–2680.9.2.169. This article reviews the empirical literature on personality, leadership, and organizational effectiveness to make 3 major points. First, leadership is a real and vastly consequential phenomenon, perhaps the single most important issue in the human sciences. Second, leadership is about the performance of teams, groups, and organizations. Good leadership promotes effective team and group performance, which in turn enhances the well–being of the incumbents; bad leadership degrades the quality of life for everyone associated with it. Third, personality predicts leadership–who we are is how we lead–and this information can be used to select future leaders or improve the performance of current incumbents.

Hoy, W. K., & Tarter, C. J. (2011). Positive Psychology and Educational Administration: An Optimistic Research Agenda. Educational Administration Quarterly, 47(3), 427–445. doi:10.1177/0013161X10396930. The purpose of this essay is to develop a research agenda based on the relatively new perspective of positive psychology. The authors first offer a brief history of positive psychology including a working definition. Next, they make the distinction between humanistic and positive psychology, with emphasis on the research methods of positive psychologists. Then the authors examine the emerging impact of positive psychology on organizational studies and education. Finally, they turn to a few current examples of the utility of positive psychology and research to inform administration and guide practice.

Huebner, E. S., & Gilman, R. (2003). Toward a focus on positive psychology in school psychology [Special issue]. School Psychology Quarterly, 18(2), 99–102. doi:10.1521/scpq. Introduces this special issue of School Psychology Quarterly and summarizes the articles contained in this issue. The major purposes of this special issue are twofold. One purpose is to illustrate that some of the various threads of positive psychology research related to children and youth, particularly focusing on the area of positive subjective experience (or subjective well–being: SWB). The second purpose is to underscore the importance of understanding the interrelationships of SWB of children and youth, and their various environmental contexts.

Huebner, E. S., & Hills, K. J. (2011). Does the positive psychology movement have legs for children in schools? The Journal of Positive Psychology, 6(1), 88–94. doi:10.1080/17439760.2010.536778. In a provocative article, Lazarus (2003) posed the question, 'Does the positive psychology movement have legs?' Based on a critique of psychology in general and positive psychology in particular, Lazarus exhibited considerable skepticism about the contribution of positive psychology at that time, given concerns related to: (1) an overemphasis on cross–sectional research designs, (2) lack of attention to context in determining the valence of emotions, (3) one–time assessments of participants' emotions, ignoring the flow of emotional experience, and (4) an overemphasis on cohort differences relative to individual differences in comparative studies. Lazarus concluded that 'as of now, the movement is, in my view, in danger of being just another one of the many fads that come and go in our field, and which usually disappear in time' (p. 93).

Hunter, J. P., & Csikszentmihalyi, M. (2003). The Positive Psychology of Interested Adolescents. Journal of Youth and Adolescence, 32(1), 27–35. Springer. Retrieved July 17, 2011, from http://www.springerlink.com/index/m27651287h67138j.pdf. Using the experience sampling method (ESM) and a diverse national sample of young people, this study identifies two groups of adolescents: those who experience chronic interest in everyday life experiences and another who experience widespread boredom. These groups are compared against several measures of psychological well–being: global self–esteem, locus of control, and emotions regarding one's future prospects. It is hypothesized that a generalized chronic experience of interest, an innate physiological function, can be used as a signal for a larger measure of psychological health, while chronic boredom is a sign of psychic dysfunction. A strong association between the experience of interest and well–being was found.

Ilies, R., Morgeson, F., & Nahrgang, J. (2005). Authentic leadership and eudaemonic well–being: Understanding leader–follower outcomes. The Leadership Quarterly, 16(3), 373–394. doi:10.1016/j.leaqua.2005.03.002. We sought to examine the concept of authentic leadership and discuss the influences of authenticity and authentic leadership on leader and follower eudaemonic well–being, as well as examine the processes through which these influences are realized. This was accomplished in four ways. First, we provide an ontological definition of authentic leadership, rooted in two distinct yet related philosophical approaches to human well–being: hedonism and eudaemonia. Second, we develop a multi–component model of authentic leadership based on recent theoretical developments in the area of authenticity. The resulting model consists of self–awareness, unbiased processing, authentic behavior/acting and authentic relational orientation. Third, we discuss the personal antecedents (leader characteristics) of authentic leadership as well as the outcomes of authentic leadership for both leaders and followers and examine the processes linking authentic leadership to its antecedents and outcomes. Fourth, we discuss the implications of this work for authentic leadership theory and then provide some practical implications for developing authentic leaders.

Ironson, G., Balbin, E., Stuetzle, R., Fletcher, M. A., OʼCleirigh, C., Laurenceau, J. P., et al. (2005). Dispositional optimism and the mechanisms by which it predicts slower disease progression in HIV: proactive behavior, avoidant coping, and depression. [Special issue]. International Journal of Behavioral Medicine, 12(2), 86–97. doi:10.1207/s15327558ijbm1202_6. The issue of whether optimism may prospectively protect against disease progression is one that has generated much interest, with mixed results in the literature. The purpose of this study was to determine whether dispositional optimism predicts slower disease progression in HIV. Two indicators of disease progression, CD4 counts and viral load, were assessed over 2 years in a diverse group (men, women, White, African American, Hispanic) of 177 people with HIV in the midrange of disease at entry to the study. Optimism predicted slower disease progression (less decrease in CD4 and less increase in viral load) controlling for baseline CD4 and viral load, antiretroviral treatment, gender, race, education, and drug use. Those low on optimism (25th percentile) lost CD4 cells at a rate 1.55 times faster than those high on optimism (75th percentile). Optimists had higher proactive behavior, less avoidant coping, and less depression: These variables mediated the linear optimism–disease progression relationship. Thus, optimists may reap health benefits partly through behavioral (proactive behavior), cognitive (avoidant coping), and affective (depression) pathways. Implications, limitations, and interpretations are discussed.

Ironson, G. H., & Powell, L. H. (2005). An exploration of the health benefits of factors that help us to thrive [Special issue]. International Journal of Behavioral Medicine, 12(2), 47–9. doi:10.1207/s15327558ijbm1202_1.

Jahoda, M. (1958). Current concepts of positive mental health. New York, NY: Basic.

Jayawickreme, E., & Forgeard, M. J. C. (2011). Insight or data: Using non-scientific sources to teach positive psychology. The Journal of Positive Psychology, 6(6), 499-505. doi:10.1080/17439760.2011.634819 Teaching positive psychology is a fascinating experience, in part because many of the issues it addresses are fundamental questions about living. One advantage of taking an interdisciplinary approach is that instructors can help students balance the valuable insights gained from the non-empirical literature on well-being with those gained from science. Positive psychology is distinctive, however, because its findings result from empirical investigation. Any inclusion of non-scientific sources should thus be accompanied with the caveat that claims about happiness need to be backed up with evidence. We discuss how positive psychology instructors can incorporate non-empirical material (from philosophy, the self-help literature, and religious) in their classes, while encouraging their students to think critically about them.

Jayawickreme, E., Pawelski, J., & Seligman, M. E. P. (2009). Happiness: Positive psychology and Nussbaum's capabilities approach. In R. Auxier (Ed.), Library of living philosophers: The philosophy of Martha Nussbaum (in press). Chicago: Open Court. Retrieved from www.dpo.uab.edu/~angner/SWB/Jayawickreme&al.pdf

Joseph, S., & Linley, P. A. (2006). Comment: positive psychology versus the medical model? American Psychologist, 61(4), 332–3. doi:10.1037/0003–066X.60.4.332. Comments on "Positive psychology progress: Empirical validation of interventions" by Seligman, Steen, Park, and Peterson (see record 2005–08033–003). Seligman and colleagues provided a progress report on positive psychology, reviewing the impressive developments over the past five years. We wholeheartedly support the positive psychology movement and believe its success is a testimony to Seligman's vision and leadership. However, in looking back over the past five years, we are mindful of what the next five years may hold and are concerned over the future direction and development of the positive psychology movement. Positive psychology as a movement largely continues to operate within the medical model and thus to implicitly condone the "medicalization" of human experience. If positive psychology is seen only as a supplement, then a limited view is offered in which positive psychology may only be relevant as an "extra" for those who are already capable and well–functioning rather than as a useful guide for people wherever they are on the continuum of functioning. Our vision is that positive psychology should stand in contrast to the medical model and its impetus toward the medicalization of human experience.

Joseph, S., & Linley, P. A. (Eds.). (2008). Trauma, recovery and growth: Positive psychological perspectives on posttraumatic stress. Hoboken, NJ: Wiley.

Joseph, S., Linley, P. A., & Maltby, J. (2006). Positive psychology, religion, and spirituality [Special issue]. Mental Health, Religion & Culture, 9(3), 209–212. doi:10.1080/13694670600615227. In this special issue, we have brought together a collection of six papers that we think are representative of the breadth of research in the positive psychology of religion and spirituality. In the first two papers, Lewis and Cruise (2006), and van Dierendonck and Mohan (2006), respectively, discuss the empirical literature on religion and well–being, and spirituality and well–being. The third paper, by Fiori, Brown, Cortina, and Antonucci (2006), is an example of the use of structural equation modelling to test the mediating effects of locus of control. In the fourth paper, Bretherton (2006) discusses the rapprochement between psychotherapy and religion from a Christian perspective and as a practising clinical psychologist. In the fifth paper, Watts, Dutton, and Gulliford (2006) outline their ongoing programme of research at the University of Cambridge into the topics of forgiveness, hope, and gratitude. In the sixth paper, Collicutt McGrath (2006) presents a social psychological account of the early development of Christianity. We hope that these papers will provide further impetus for research into the positive psychology of religion and spirituality.

Joseph, S., & Wood, A. (2010). Assessment of positive functioning in clinical psychology: Theoretical and practical issues. Clinical Psychology Review, 30(7), 830–838. doi:10.1016/j.cpr.2010.01.002. Positive psychology has led to an increasing emphasis on the promotion of positive functioning in clinical psychology research and practice, raising issues of how to assess the positive in clinical setting. Three key considerations are presented. First, existing clinical measures may already be assessing positive functioning, if positive and negative functioning exist on a single continuum (such as on bipolar dimensions from happiness to depression, and from anxiety to relaxation). Second, specific measures of positive functioning (e.g., eudemonic well–being) could be used in conjunction with existing clinical scales. Third, completely different measures would be needed depending on whether well–being is defined as emotional or medical functioning, or as humanistically orientated growth (e.g., authenticity). It is important that clinical psychologists introduce positive functioning into their research and practice in order to widen their armory of therapeutic interventions, but in doing so researchers and practitioners need also to be aware that they are shifting the agenda of clinical psychology. As such, progress in clinical psychology moving toward the adoption of positive functioning requires reflection on epistemological foundations.

Judge, T. A., Heller, D., & Mount, M. K. (2002). Five–factor model of personality and job satisfaction: A meta–analysis. Journal of Applied Psychology, 87(3), 530–541. doi:10.1037/0021–9010.87.3.530. This study reports results of a meta–analysis linking traits from the 5–factor model of personality to overall job satisfaction. Using the model as an organizing framework, 334 correlations from 163 independent samples were classified according to the model. The estimated true score correlations with job satisfaction were –.29 for Neuroticism, .25 for Extraversion, .02 for Openness to Experience, .17 for Agreeableness, and .26 for Conscientiousness. Results further indicated that only the relations of Neuroticism and Extraversion with job satisfaction generalized across studies. As a set, the Big Five traits had a multiple correlation of .41 with job satisfaction, indicating support for the validity of the dispositional source of job satisfaction when traits are organized according to the 5–factor model.

Kahneman, D., & Krueger, A. B. (2006). Developments in the measurement of subjective well-being. Journal of Economic Perspectives, 20(1), 3-24. doi:10.1257/089533006776526030 This article discusses developments in theory and research on happiness two decades after publication of Psychological Well-Being in Later Life (Butterworths, 1991) by Albert Kozma, Michael Stones, and Kevin McNeil. Major empirical advances include new knowledge about contributions to happiness resulting from genetically related effects and personality. Personality traits have stronger relationships with happiness than was apparent 20 years ago and contribute to covariance between happiness and some of its predictors. Evolving emphases in research include the ways in which genetically related effects influence how people shape, and react to, their environment.

Kaiser, R. B., & Overfield, D. V. (2011). Strengths, strengths overused, and lopsided leadership. Consulting Psychology Journal: Practice and Research, 63(2), 89–109. doi:10.1037/a0024470. Riding the growth of positive psychology, strengths–based development has become a popular approach to helping managers become better leaders. This school of thought advises managers to maximize their natural talents rather than try to correct weaknesses. This article takes issue with this advice and considers how it can, ironically, lead managers to turn their strengths into weaknesses through overuse as well as cause them to neglect shortcomings that can degrade the performance of employees, teams, and organizations. Hypotheses are developed about the relationship between specific personal strengths and leadership behaviors as well as the joint tendencies to overdo behaviors related to one's strengths while underdoing opposing but complementary behaviors. Strong support was found for the tendency of managers to do too much of the behaviors related to their strengths and more modest support was found for the tendency of managers to do too little of opposing but complementary behaviors. The implications of these findings are discussed in terms of future research needs and how to apply the strengths approach in a way that minimizes downside risk in developmental applications.

Kappes, H. B., & Oettingen, G. (2011). Positive fantasies about idealized futures sap energy. Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, 47(4), 719-729. doi:10.1016/j.jesp.2011.02.003 Positive fantasies allow people to mentally indulge in a desired future. Whereas previous research found that spontaneously generated positive fantasies about the future predict poor achievement, we examined the effect of experimentally induced positive fantasies about the future. The present four experiments identify low energy, measured by physiological and behavioral indicators, as a mechanism by which positive fantasies translate into poor achievement. Induced positive fantasies resulted in less energy than fantasies that questioned the desired future (Study 1), negative fantasies (Study 2), or neutral fantasies (Study 3). Additionally, positive fantasies yielded a larger decrease in energy when they pertained to a more rather than a less pressing need (Study 4). Results indicate that one reason positive fantasies predict poor achievement is because they do not generate energy to pursue the desired future.

Kashdan, T. (2004). The assessment of subjective well–being (issues raised by the Oxford Happiness Questionnaire). Personality and Individual Differences, 36(5), 1225–1232. doi:10.1016/S0191–8869(03)00213–7. This commentary raises conceptual issues related to recent efforts to develop measures of subjective wellbeing (SWB). Specifically, Hills' and Argyle's (2002) article on the development of the 29–item Oxford Happiness Questionnaire (OHQ), and its predecessor, the 20–item Oxford Happiness Inventory (Argyle, Martin & Crossland, 1989). Instead of assessing the structure of subjective well–being (SWB), items of the OHQ tap into self–esteem, sense of purpose, social interest and kindness, sense of humor, and aesthetic appreciation. The item content of the OHQ fails to differentiate the assessment of SWB from the predictors, correlates, and consequences of SWB. In contrast to published SWB findings with other measures, data are presented suggesting that the OHQ has artificially inflated correlations with those constructs tapped by the OHQ: self–esteem, sense of purpose, and social interest/extraversion. The operationalization of SWB by the OHQ is not based on relevant definition and theory and appears to invite nonrandom error into the study of SWB. The article concludes with an appeal for the use of more stringent conceptual and analytic approaches.

Kashdan, T., Biswas–Diener, R., & King, L. (2008). Reconsidering happiness: The costs of distinguishing between hedonics and eudaimonia. The Journal of Positive Psychology, 3(4), 219–233. doi:10.1080/17439760802303044. In recent years, well–being researchers have distinguished between eudaimonic happiness (e.g., meaning and purpose; taking part in activities that allow for the actualization of one's skills, talents, and potential) and hedonic happiness (e.g., high frequencies of positive affect, low frequencies of negative affect, and evaluating life as satisfying). Unfortunately, this distinction (rooted in philosophy) does not necessarily translate well to science. Among the problems of drawing too sharp a line between 'types of happiness' is the fact that eudaimonia is not well–defined and lacks consistent measurement. Moreover, empirical evidence currently suggests that hedonic and eudaimonic well–being overlap conceptually, and may represent psychological mechanisms that operate together. In this article, we outline the problems and costs of distinguishing between two types of happiness, and provide detailed recommendations for a research program on well–being with greater scientific precision.

Kashdan, T. B., & Steger, M. F. (2011). Challenges, pitfalls, and aspirations for positive psychology. In K. M. Sheldon, T. B. Kashdan, & M. F. Steger, (Eds.), Designing positive psychology: Taking stock and moving forward (pp. 9-21). doi:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195373585.003.0002

Kassinove, J. I. (2002). As defined, unification is inevitable. American Psychologist, 57(12), 1127-1127. doi:10.1037//0003-066X.57.12.1127a

Kauffman, C. (2006). Positive psychology: The science at the heart of coaching. In D. R. Stober & A. M. Grant (Eds.), Evidence based coaching handbook: Putting best practices to work for your clients (pp. 219–253). Hoboken, NJ: Wiley.

Keith, H, E., & Keith, K. D. (2004, Summer). Habits of happiness: Positive psychology and the philosophy of William James. Streams of William James, 6(2), 5-10. Retrieved fromhttp:// williamjamesstudies.org/streams.html

Kelley, T. M. (2001). The need for a principle–based positive psychology. American Psychologist, 56(1), 88–89. doi:10.1037//0003–066X.56.1.88. Comments on M. E. P. Seligman and M. Csikszentmihalyi's (see record 2000–13324–001) introduction to the special issue on positive psychology (American Psychologist, 2000[Jan], Vol 55[1]). T. M. Kelley is concerned by the apparent absence of causal psychological principles to guide the emerging field of positive psychology in its study of optimal human functioning. Kelley illustrates how the principles of psychology of mind or health realization lead to a fundamentally different view of one of the most prominent theoretical concepts of positive psychology: Csikszentmihalyi's (1999) flow.

Kendler, H. H. (1999). The role of value in the world of psychology. American Psychologist, 54(10), 828-835. doi:10.1037/0003-066X.54.10.828 The mechanistic view of Newtonian science was interpreted by German holism to consist of barren facts and purposeless theories. The assumption that the whole determines the operation of its parts enables holism to provide moral value and existential meaning to human existence. Whereas a positivist view of science assumes that facts cannot logically yield moral values that are right for humankind, holism contends that human values can be revealed in a scientific manner. The same epistemological process that allows holism and humanistic psychology to generate a psychologically demanded morality has also justified Nazi and Communist ideology. The logic of the fact/value dichotomy and the inevitable ascendancy of moral pluralism prevent scientific psychology from serving a democratic society as a pipeline to moral truth or to a positive conception of mental health. Psychological research can estimate the consequences of competing social policies and thus assist a democracy in making informed choices. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2010 APA, all rights reserved)

Kendler, H. H. (2002). Romantic versus realistic views of psychology. American Psychologist, 57(12), 1125-1126. doi:10.1037//0003-066X.57.12.1125

Keough, K., & Markus, H. R. (1998). The role of the self in building the bridge from philosophy to biology. Psychological Inquiry, 9(1), 49–53. doi:10.1207/s15327965pli0901_7.

Kets de Vries, M. F. R. (2009). Sex, money, happiness, and death: The quest for authenticity. Basingstoke, England: Palgrave Macmillan.

Keyes, C. L. M. (1998). Social Well–Being. Social Psychology Quarterly, 61(2), 121. doi:10.2307/2787065 The proposal of five dimensions of social well–being, social integration, social contribution, social coherence, social actualization, and social acceptance, is theoretically substantiated. The theoretical structure, construct validity, and the social structural sources of the dimensions of social well–being are investigated in two studies. Item and confirmatory factor analyses in both studies corroborate the theoretical model of social well–being. The new scales correlate convergently with measures of anomie, generativity, perceived social constraints, community involvement and neighborhood quality. The new scales correlate discriminantly with measures of dysphoria, global well–being, physical health and optimism. Multivariate analyses in both studies substantiate the claim that social well–being is an achievement, facilitated by educational attainment and age. The state and direction of the study of adult functioning are discussed.

Keyes, C. L. M., (2003). Complete mental health: An agenda for the 21st century. Flourishing: Positive psychology and the life well–lived. In C. L. M. Keyes, & J. Haidt, (Eds.), Flourishing: Positive psychology and the life well lived (pp. 293–312). Washington DC: American Psychological Association.

Keyes, C. L. M., & Haidt, J. (Eds.). (2003a). Flourishing: Positive psychology and the life well lived. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.

Keyes, C. L. M., & Haidt, J. (2003b). Introduction: Human flourishing–The study of 'that which makes life worthwhile.' In C. L. M. Keyes, & J. Haidt, (Eds.), Flourishing: Positive psychology and the life well lived (pp. 3–12). Washington DC: American Psychological Association.

Keyes, C. L. M., Shmotkin, D., & Ryff, C. D. (2002). Optimizing well–being: The empirical encounter of two traditions. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 82(6), 1007–1022. doi:10.1037/0022–3514.82.6.1007. Subjective well–being (SWB) is evaluation of life in terms of satisfaction and balance between positive and negative affect; psychological well–being (PWB) entails perception of engagement with existential challenges of life. The authors hypothesized that these research streams are conceptually related but empirically distinct and that combinations of them relate differentially to sociodemographics and personality. Data are from a national sample of 3,032 Americans aged 25–74. Factor analyses confirmed the related–but–distinct status of SWB and PWB. The probability of optimal well–being (high SWB and PWB) increased as age, education, extraversion, and conscientiousness increased and as neuroticism decreased. Compared with adults with higher SWB than PWB, adults with higher PWB than SWB were younger, had more education, and showed more openness to experience.

King, L. A. (2000). Why happiness is good for you: A commentary on Fredrickson. Prevention & Treatment, 3, 1–4. American Psychological Association. Retrieved July 26, 2011, from http://psycnet.apa.org/journals/pre/3/1/4c/. Fredrickson's (2000) account of the role of positive emotions in human functioning is certainly an exciting and promising one. One shortfall of the approach is that it neglects the central importance of social relationships in human life and the important, and perhaps unique, relation between positive emotion and close interpersonal bonds. A few areas in which such a focus might benefit the broaden–and–build model are reviewed and some other ambiguities in this promising new approach are suggested.

King, L. A. (2001). The hard road to the good life: The happy, mature person [Special issue]. Journal of Humanistic Psychology, 41(1), 51–72. doi:10.1177/0022167801411005. The purpose of this article is to examine how two aspects of the good life, happiness and maturity, are reflected in the stories that people tell about their lives. This article highlights the ways that ego development may change the meaning and experience of happiness. When happy people tell stories of life transition, they are more likely to use foreshadowing and happy endings. When mature people tell such stories, they tend to include mention of their active struggle with their life changes. The stories of happy, mature individuals are examined to illustrate how negative life experiences and difficult times may be accommodated into the good life.

King, L. A. (2003). Some truths behind the trombones [Special issue] ? Psychological Inquiry 14, 128–131. doi:10.1207/S15327965PLI1402_03

King, L. A. (2011). Are we there yet? In K. M. Sheldon, T. B. Kashdan, & M. F. Steger, (Eds.), Designing positive psychology: Taking stock and moving forward (pp. 439-446). doi:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195373585.003.0030

King, L. A., & Hicks, J. A. (2006). Narrating the Self in the Past and the Future: Implications for Maturity. Research in Human Development, 3(2–3), 121–138. Retrieved July 26, 2011, from http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/15427609.2006.9683365. In this article, we review research on narrative possible selves as correlates and predictors of well–being and ego development in individuals who have experienced important life transitions. This research has shown that positive well–being is best predicted by investment in current life goals and a divestment of interest in "lost goals." In contrast, ego development is correlated with the capacity to elaborate on one's lost possible selves. In addition, this capacity to elaborate on lost goals predicts enhanced development over time. Based on our findings, we propose a general model of goal processes in personality development, suggesting that the outcome of maturity is best captured by a convergence of happiness and ego development.

King, L. A., & Hicks, J. A. (2007). Whatever happened to "What might have been"? Regrets, happiness, and maturity. The American psychologist, 62(7), 625–36. doi:10.1037/0003–066X.62.7.625. Although lost opportunities and mistaken expectations are unpleasant to think and talk about, these experiences may have a role to play in personality development. Drawing on research using narratives of lost possible selves, the authors review the relations of regrettable experiences to 2 important and independent aspects of maturity, happiness and complexity. Thinking about a lost possible self is related to concurrent regrets, distress, and lowered well–being; however, elaborating on a lost possible self is related, concurrently, to complexity and predicts complexity, prospectively, over time. In this article, the authors describe the role that regrettable experiences have in promoting both happiness and complexity. Finally, expanding on previous work, the authors examine potential affordances of happy maturity and suggest psychological capacities that may promote happy maturity.

King, L. A., & Hicks, J. (2009). Detecting and constructing meaning in life events. The Journal of Positive Psychology, 4(5), 317–330. doi:10.1080/17439760902992316. Three studies examined the meaning ascribed to events varying in intensity and valence and how meaning detection and construction relate to the experience of meaning in life events. In Study 1, participants were more likely to expect meaning to emerge from major life events particularly if they are negative, while trivial events were expected to be meaningful if they were positive. Study 2 showed that constructed meaning was more likely to occur in response to negative events while detected meaning was more likely to be associated with positive events. Study 3 showed that this 'match' between valence and meaning strategy predicted enhanced experience of meaning in those events. These studies suggest that the more subtle experience of meaning detection may provide a way to understand the meaning that emerges from positive events and experiences.

King, L. A., & Miner, K. N. (2000). Writing about the perceived benefits of traumatic events: Implications for physical health. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 26(2), 220–230. doi:10.1177/0146167200264008. Research by Pennebaker and his colleagues supports the healing power of writing about traumatic events. This study explored the importance of writing about the perceived benefits of traumatic events as a factor in this process. The study included 118 participants who were randomly assigned to write about one of four topics in a 2 (writing about perceived benefits vs. not writing about perceived benefits)×2 (writing about trauma vs. not writing about trauma) factorial design. Participants also completed questionnaire measures of subjective well–being and released health center information for the year. Participants who wrote only about trauma or perceived benefits showed significantly fewer health center visits for illness 3 months after writing. In addition, 5 months after writing, the trauma–only and perceived–benefits–only groups maintained a difference from the control group. These results suggest that writing about perceived benefits from traumatic events may provide a less upsetting but effective way to benefit from writing.

King, L. A., & Napa, C. K. (1998). What makes a life good? Journal of personality and social psychology, 75(1), 156–65. Retrieved from http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/9686456. Two studies examined folk concepts of the good life. Samples of college students (N = 104) and community adults (N = 264) were shown a career survey ostensibly completed by a person rating his or her occupation. After reading the survey, participants judged the desirability and moral goodness of the respondent's life, as a function of the amount of happiness, meaning in life, and wealth experienced. Results revealed significant effects of happiness and meaning on ratings of desirability and moral goodness. In the college sample, individuals high on all 3 independent variables were judged as likely to go to heaven. In the adult sample, wealth was also related to higher desirability. Results suggest a general perception that meaning in life and happiness are essential to the folk concept of the good life, whereas money is relatively unimportant.

King, L. A., & Pennebaker, J. (1998). Whatʼs so great about feeling good? Psychological Inquiry, 9(1), 53–56. Taylor & Francis. doi:10.1207/s15327965pli0901_8.

Kitayama, S., & Na, J. (2011). Need, level, and culture: Comments on Sheldon, Cheng, and Hilpert. Psychological Inquiry, 22(1), 26-31. doi:10.1080/1047840X.2011.547984

Kluemper, D. H., Little, L. M., & DeGroot, T. (2009). State or trait: Effects of state optimism on job–related outcomes. Journal of Organizational Behavior, 30(2), 209–231. doi:10.1002/job.591. State optimism was hypothesized to be significantly related to six organizationally relevant outcomes above and beyond the effect of trait optimism. Moreover, state optimism was hypothesized to have effects on these six outcomes beyond the effects of positive and negative affect. Conversely, trait optimism was expected to be unrelated to the six outcome variables when controlling for state optimism as well as when controlling for affect. These hypotheses were tested with two samples. First, 772 undergraduate students were assessed to determine the impact of state versus trait optimism on task performance in the form of course grade. From this sample, the 261 students working at least 20 hours per week were similarly assessed with regard to work related distress, burnout, affective commitment, and job satisfaction. Then, a field sample of 106 employees assessed distress, burnout, affective commitment, job satisfaction, and supervisor rated task and contextual job performance. Results indicate state optimism (but not trait optimism) is a potentially powerful indicator of important organizational outcomes, even after controlling for the effects of positive and negative affect. Implications of these findings and directions for future research are discussed.

Kobau, R., Seligman, M. E. P., Peterson, C., Diener, E., Zack, M. M., Chapman, D., & Thompson, W. (2011). Mental health promotion in public health: Perspectives and strategies from positive psychology. American journal of public health, 101, 1-10. doi:10.2105/AJPH.2010.300083

Kristjánsson, K. (2010). Positive psychology, happiness, and virtue: The troublesome conceptual issues. Review of General Psychology, 14(4), 296–310. doi:10.1037/a0020781. This article subjects the recently prominent theory of positive psychology to critical conceptual scrutiny, with emphasis on its general take on happiness, virtue, and positive emotion. It is argued that positive psychology suffers from internal divisions (such as divergent views of its proponents on what happiness is), ambiguities (e.g., regarding the possibility of nonvirtuous happiness), ambivalence (concerning self–realism vs. anti–self–realism), and at least one serious misconception (the assumption that any view that makes overall evaluative judgments thereby prescribes). Nevertheless, many of the charges commonly urged against positive psychology, in particular by Aristotelian theorists, do not stick, and we may be well advised to give it the benefit of our doubt.

Krueger, J. I. (2011). Shock without awe. The American psychologist, 66(7), 642-3. doi:10.1037/a0025080

Lambert, C. A. (2007). The science of happiness: Psychology explores humans at their best. Harvard Magazine, 1(January–February), 5–10.

Lambert, M. J., & Erekson, D. M. (2008). Positive psychology and the humanistic tradition. [Special issue]. Journal of Psychotherapy Integration, 18(2), 222–232. doi: 10.1037/1053–0479.18.2.222. Positive emotions are discussed within the context of experiential, client–centered, and related psychotherapies. An attempt is made to discuss the idea that the effects of such psychotherapies could be enhanced if positive emotions were viewed as a cause of positive psychotherapy outcomes rather than a consequence of focusing on painful and disturbing emotions. It is concluded that therapists within the humanistic tradition have highly positive views of persons and their tendency to be forward moving. Prizing patients while they express "negative" emotions seems much more likely to lead to positive emotions than the reverse. Thus, the positive psychology movement with its emphasis on giving preference to positive emotions seems misguided in a clinical context. Despite these reservations about the value of focusing on positive emotions in psychotherapy, the authors call for research to test the consequences of such a focus in experiential psychotherapy.

Lampropoulos, G. K. (2001). Integrating psychopathology, positive psychology, and psychotherapy. American Psychologist, 56(1), 87–88. doi:10.1037//0003–066X.56.1.87. Comments on M. E. P. Seligman and M. Csikszentmihalyi's (see record 2000–13324–001) introduction to the special issue on positive psychology (American Psychologist, 2000[Jan], Vol 55[1]). The commenting author suggests that to achieve a major scientific shift to positive psychology (which could complement the dominant disease–oriented focus in mental health), psychologists should reconcile and merge the two foci; this could be best done by gradually infusing positive psychology into current models of psychopathology and treatment. To ease the integration and transition from a psychopathology–focused to a strength–focused approach in therapeutic psychology, programmatic research might be necessary; three possible areas of attention are discussed.

Larsen R. J. & Eid M. (2008). Ed Diener and the science of subjective well–being. In M. Eid and R. J. Larsen (Eds.). The science of subjective well–being(pp. 1–13). New York, NY: Guilford.

Larson, R. W. (2000). Toward a psychology of positive youth development [Special issue]. American Psychologist, 55(1), 170. doi:10.1037//0003–066X. This article analyzes the development of initiative as an exemplar of one of many learning experiences that should be studied as part of positive youth development. The capacity for initiative is essential for adults in our society and will become more important in the 21st century, yet adolescents have few opportunities to learn it. Their typical experiences during schoolwork and unstructured leisure do not reflect conditions for learning initiative. The context best suited to the development of initiative appears to be that of structured voluntary activities, such as sports, arts, and participation in organizations, in which youths experience the rare combination of intrinsic motivation in combination with deep attention. An incomplete body of outcome research suggests that such activities are associated with positive development, but the developmental processes involved are only beginning to be understood. One promising approach has recorded language use and has found that adolescents participating in effective organizations acquire a new operating language that appears to correspond to the development of initiative.

Lazarus, R. S. (2003a). Does the positive psychology movement have legs [Special issue]? Psychological Inquiry, 14, 93–109. doi:10.1207/S15327965PLI1402_02

Lazarus, R. S. (2003b). The Lazarus manifesto for positive psychology and psychology in general [Special issue]. Psychological Inquiry, 14, 173–189. doi:10.1207/S15327965PLI1402_04

Lau, M. Y. (2002). Postmodernism and the values of science. American Psychologist, 57(12), 1126-1127. doi:10.1037//0003-066X.57.12.1126

Layous, K., Chancellor, J., Lyubomirsky, S., Wang, L., & Doraiswamy, P. M. (2011). Delivering happiness: Translating positive psychology intervention research for treating major and minor depressive disorders. Journal of alternative and complementary medicine, 17(8), 675–83. doi:10.1089/acm.2011.0139 Despite the availability of many treatment options, depressive disorders remain a global public health problem. Even in affluent nations, 70% of reported cases either do not receive the recommended level of treatment or do not get treated at all, and this percentage does not reflect cases of depression that go unreported due to lack of access to health care, stigma, or other reasons. In developing countries, the World Health Organization estimates that <10% receive proper depression care due to poverty, stigma, and lack of governmental mental health resources and providers. Current treatments do not work for everyone, and even people who achieve remission face a high risk of recurrence and residual disability. The development of low–cost effective interventions that can serve either as initial therapy for mild symptoms or as adjunctive therapy for partial responders to medication is an immense unmet need. Positive activity interventions (PAIs) teach individuals ways to increase their positive thinking, positive affect, and positive behaviors. The majority of such interventions, which have obtained medium–size effect sizes, have been conducted with nondepressed individuals, but two randomized controlled studies in patients with mild clinical depression have reported promising initial findings. In this article, the authors review the relevant literature on the effectiveness of various types of PAIs, draw on social psychology, affective neuroscience and psychopharmacology research to propose neural models for how PAIs might relieve depression, and discuss the steps needed to translate the potential promise of PAIs as clinical treatments for individuals with major and minor depressive disorders.

Le, T. N. (2010). Life satisfaction, openness value, self–transcendence, and wisdom. Journal of Happiness Studies, 12(2), 171–182. doi:10.1007/s10902–010–9182–1. Prior studies suggest a positive association between life satisfaction and wisdom. In a sample with 123 European American community–dwelling adults, the results suggest that wisdom and life satisfaction are positively intertwined, and that openness value is an important factor for life satisfaction, a self–transcendence orientation, and wisdom.

Leontiev, D. (2006). Positive personality development: Approaching personal autonomy. In M. Csikszentmihalyi, & I. S. Csikszentmihalyi (Eds.), A life worth living: Contributions to positive psychology (p. 49–61). New York, NY: Oxford. The concept of positive personality development refers to both the direction of developmental processes and to their qualitative contents. An objective criterion of development is the degree to which one approaches and uses specifically human capacities and potentialities rather than subhuman ones. One may speak of progressive emancipation as the general direction of this process and personal autonomy as its goal. The two theoretical models described in this chapter explain why human development so often deviates from a positive direction. The multiregulation personality model accounts for the variety of behavior regulation mechanisms in humans, and the developmental autodetermination model, explains both successes and failures in becoming the master of one's own life. Positive personality development leads to personal autonomy, meaning, and happiness; however, it also presupposes effort, responsibility, and risk taking––both on the part of the psychologists and on the part of their clients and research participants.

Lester, P. B., McBride, S., Bliese, P. D., & Adler, A. B. (2011). Bringing science to bear: An empirical assessment of the Comprehensive Soldier Fitness program. The American psychologist, 66(1), 77–81. doi:10.1037/a0022083This article outlines the U.S. Army's effort to empirically validate and assess the Comprehensive Soldier Fitness (CSF) program. The empirical assessment includes four major components. First, the CSF scientific staff is currently conducting a longitudinal study to determine if the Master Resilience Training program and the Comprehensive Resilience Modules lead to lasting resilience development in soldiers. Second, the CSF program has partnered with other researchers to conduct a series of longitudinal studies examining the link between physiological, neurobiological, and psychological resilience factors. Third, the CSF program is also incorporating institutional–level data to determine if its material influences health, behavioral, and career outcomes. Fourth, group randomized trials are being conducted to ensure that resilience training incorporated under the CSF program is effective with soldiers. A specific rationale and methodologies are discussed.

Leu, J., Wang, J., & Koo, K. (2011). Are positive emotions just as "positive" across cultures? Emotion (Washington, D.C.). doi:10.1037/a0021332. Whereas positive emotions and feeling unequivocally good may be at the heart of well–being among Westerners, positive emotions often carry negative associations within many Asian cultures. Based on a review of East–West cultural differences in dialectical emotions, or co–occurring positive and negative feelings, we predicted culture to influence the association between positive emotions and depression, but not the association between negative emotions and depression. As predicted, in a survey of over 600 European–, immigrant Asian–, and Asian American college students, positive emotions were associated with depression symptoms among European Americans and Asian Americans, but not immigrant Asians. Negative emotions were associated with depression symptoms among all three groups. We also found initial evidence that acculturation (i.e., nativity) may influence the role of positive emotions in depression: Asian Americans fell "in between" the two other groups. These findings suggest the importance of studying the role of culture in positive emotions and in positive psychology. The use of interventions based on promoting positive emotions in clinical psychology among Asian clients is briefly discussed. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2011 APA, all rights reserved).

Levine, M. (2000). The positive psychology of Buddhism and Yoga: Paths to a mature happiness. Mahwah, NJ: Erlbaum. Buddhism and Yoga are the quintessential positive psychologies. Indeed, they provide the intellectual framework for such a psychology.

Lewis, C. A., & Cruise, S. M. (2006). Religion and happiness: Consensus, contradictions, comments and concerns [Special issue]. Mental Health, Religion & Culture, 9(3), 213–225. doi:10.1080/13694670600615276. The relationship between religion and happiness has been the focus of much research. The present review provides a critical examination of this research and, in particular, focuses on conceptual and methodological concerns. The majority of studies report a positive association between measures of religion and happiness; however, contradictory findings are common. This is exemplified in the literature that has systematically employed the Francis Scale of Attitude toward Christianity alongside two different measures of happiness among a variety of samples. Two opposing conclusions have found consistent support. Research with the Oxford Happiness Inventory has consistently found religiosity to be associated with happiness, while research employing the Depression–Happiness Scale has consistently found no association. It is argued that such contradictions may reflect both conceptual and methodological weaknesses in this literature.

Lewis, S. (2011). Positive psychology at work: How positive leadership and appreciative inquiry create inspiring organizations. Malden, MA: Wiley-Blackwell

Lilienfeld, S. O., & Arkowitz, H. (2011). Can positive thinking be negative? Scientific American Mind, 22(2), 64–65. discuss academic and applied perspectives on strengths psychology. . . . we define a strength as a natural capacity for behaving, thinking or feeling in a way that allows optimal functioning and performance in the pursuit of valued outcomes. . . . Strengths psychology offers much to the understanding of constructive human nature, and provides psychologists with a rare opportunity of working with people in a way that enhances their identity and selfworth and respects their individual talents and potentialities.

Lilius, J. M., Worline, M. C., Maitlis, S., Kanov, J., Dutton, J. E., & Frost, P. (2008). The contours and consequences of compassion at work. Journal of Organizational Behavior, 29(2), 193–218. doi:10.1002/job.508. This paper describes two studies that explore core questions about compassion at work. Findings from a pilot survey indicate that compassion occurs with relative frequency among a wide variety of individuals, suggesting a relationship between experienced compassion, positive emotion, and affective commitment. A complementary narrative study reveals a wide range of compassion triggers and illuminates ways that work colleagues respond to suffering. The narrative analysis demonstrates that experienced compassion provides important sensemaking occasions where employees who receive, witness, or participate in the delivery of compassion reshape understandings of their co–workers, themselves, and their organizations. Together these studies map the contours of compassion at work, provide evidence of its powerful consequences, and open a horizon of new research questions.

Lindfors, P., Lundberg, O., & Lundberg, U. (2005). Sense of coherence and biomarkers of health in 43–year–old women. [Special issue]. International Journal of Behavioral Medicine, 12(2), 98–102. doi:10.1207/s15327558ijbm1202_7. The aim of this cross–sectional study was to investigate how sense of coherence (SOC) relates to biomarkers of health in 43–year–old nonsmoking premenopausal women. Before taking part in a standardized medical health examination including assessment of blood pressure, blood lipids, and physical symptoms, participants completed a three–item measure of SOC. On the basis of their SOC scores, the 244 women with complete datasets were categorized into 1 of 3 groups with a weak, intermediate, or strong SOC. Results showed that women with a strong SOC had significantly lower levels of systolic blood pressure (p < .05) and total cholesterol (p < .05) than did women with a weak SOC. It is suggested that the lower levels of systolic blood pressure and total cholesterol found in women with a strong SOC may constitute a biological buffer against ill health and disease.

Linley, P. A., & Harrington, S. (2006). Playing to your strengths. The Psychologist, 19, 86–89.

Linley, P. A., & Joseph, S. (Eds.). (2004) Positive psychology in practice. Hoboken, NJ: Wiley.

Linley, P. A., Joseph, S., Harrington, S., & Wood, A. M. (2006). Positive psychology: Past, present, and (possible) future. The Journal of Positive Psychology, 1(1), 3–16. doi:10.1080/17439760500372796. What is positive psychology? Where has it come from? Where is it going? These are the questions we address in this article. In defining positive psychology, we distinguish between the meta–psychological level, where the aim of positive psychology is to redress the imbalance in psychology research and practice, and the pragmatic level, which is concerned with what positive psychologists do, in terms of their research, practice, and areas of interest. These distinctions in how we understand positive psychology are then used to shape conceptions of possible futures for positive psychology. In conclusion, we identify several pertinent issues for the consideration of positive psychology as it moves forward. These include the need to synthesize the positive and negative, build on its historical antecedents, integrate across levels of analysis, build constituency with powerful stakeholders, and be aware of the implications of description versus prescription.

Linley, P. A., & Leontiev, D. (2009). Multiple dimensions of the good life: Introducing international and interdisciplinary perspectives. The Journal of Positive Psychology, 4(4), 257–259. doi:10.1080/17439760902933641. The article discusses various reports published within the issue, including one by Nansook Park and colleagues on the concept of happiness across 27 different nations, one by Anna Wierzbicka on the linguistics of the term good life, and one by Antonella Delle Fave and Marta Bassi on optimal experience in the lives of cultural immigrants in Italy.

Linley, P. A., Maltby, J., Wood, A. M., Osborne, G., & Hurling, R. (2009). Measuring happiness: The higher order factor structure of subjective and psychological well–being measures. Personality and Individual Differences, 47(8), 878–884. doi:10.1016/j.paid.2009.07.010. with a cognitive component of judgments about one's life satisfaction. Psychological well–being is conceptualised as having six components, including positive relations with others, autonomy, environmental mastery, self–acceptance, purpose in life and personal growth. In the current study, we used exploratory factor analysis and confirmatory factor analysis to examine the higher order factor structure of subjective and psychological well–being in a series of large UK samples. Analyses showed that subjective well–being and psychological well–being loaded separately onto two independent but related factors, consistent with previous research. Further, we demonstrated that these loadings did not vary according to gender, age or ethnicity, providing further support for the robustness of this higher order factor structure. The discussion locates these findings in context and explores future research directions on the associations between subjective and psychological well–being over time.

Loevinger, J. (1976). Ego development: Conceptions and theories. San Francisco, CA: Jossey–Bass.

Lomas, T., & Ivtzan, I. (2015). Second wave positive psychology: Exploring the positive-negative dialectics of wellbeing. Journal of Happiness Studies. doi:10.1007/s10902-015-9668-y This paper has provided a summary of SWPP-which, following Wong (2011), could equally be referred to as PP 2.0-which is above all characterised by appreciation of the dialectical nature of wellbeing (in conjunction with other subsidiary elements, such as a deep understanding of context). It was suggested that this dialectical appreciation centres on three key components: the principle of appraisal (the difficulty of categorising phenomena as either positive or negative), the principle of co-valence (the notion that many experiences involve a blend of positive and negative elements), and the principle of complementarity (the idea that wellbeing and flourishing depend upon a complex balance and harmonization of light and dark aspects of life). The principle of appraisal was demonstrated through five case studies of conceptual dichotomies, which revealed that an appraisal of the respective value of each of the polarities was dependent upon context. The principle of co-valence was shown through two case studies of complex processes, posttraumatic growth and love, which, while both being indicative of flourishing, involve a balance of positive and negative experiences. Together, both issues (of appraisal and covalence) substantiate the broader issue of complementarity, which holds that flourishing depends on the delicate dialectic interaction of light and dark aspects of life. These considerations show the way in which PP is evolving and maturing as a discipline, and point the way ahead to future scholarship on the nature of wellbeing.

Long, R. F., Huebner, E. S., Wedell, D. H., & Hills, K. J. (2012). Measuring school-related subjective well-being in adolescents. The American Journal of Orthopsychiatry, 82, 50-60. doi:10.1111/j.1939-0025.2011.01130.x The tripartite model of subjective well-being (SWB) incorporates 3 components: frequent positive emotions, infrequent negative emotions, and an overall positive evaluation of life circumstances (Diener, Suh, Lucas, & Smith, 1999). In light of the large amount of time that youth spend in school, this study investigated a tripartite model of school-related SWB among adolescents, based on 3 measures of SWB appropriate for adolescents. The measures included a measure of school satisfaction (SS) and measures of positive and negative emotions experienced specifically during school hours. Confirmatory factor analysis was conducted to analyze the factorial validity of 3- and 4-factor models of school-related SWB in a sample of 921 adolescents. Results indicated that a 4-factor model comprised of positive emotions, negative emotions, fear-related negative emotions, and SS best described the structure of school-related SWB in the current sample. Results also revealed a comparable factor structure for male and female students. The study points to the possible benefits of a contextualized approach to SWB that takes into account the specific environments in which adolescents live.

Lopez, S. J. (Ed.). (2008). Positive psychology: Exploring the best in people. (Vols. 1–4). Westport, CT: Praeger. [Volume 1: Discovering human strengths; Volume 2: Capitalizing on emotional experience; Volume 3: Growing in the face of adversity: Volume 4: Pursuing human flourishing.]

Lopez, S. J. (Ed.). (2009). The encyclopedia of positive psychology. Malden, MA: Blackwell.

Lopez, S. J., & Magyar–Moe, J. L. (2006). A positive psychology that matters. The Counseling Psychologist, 34(2), 323–330. doi:10.1177/0011000005284392. The Major Contribution intended to situate positive psychology in counseling psychology's past and future and in the complex world we live and work in today. The four reactions (Frazier, Lee,& Steger; Gerstein; Linley; Mollen, Ethington,& Ridley) provide new insights into how counseling psychology has and will contribute to the study of human strengths and positive outcomes. In this rejoinder, the authors attempt to build on their colleagues' ideas and call for socially significant strength–based research and practice. A "positive psychology that matters" will address societal problems and will potentially help people capitalize on their strengths and lead more satisfying and meaningful lives.

Lopez, S. J., & Snyder, C. R. (2004). Positive psychological assessment: A handbook of models and measures. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.

Losada, M., & Heaphy, E. (2004). The role of positivity and connectivity in the performance of business teams: A nonlinear dynamics model. American Behavioral Scientist, 47(6), 740–765. doi:10.1177/0002764203260208 Connectivity, the control parameter in a nonlinear dynamics model of team performance is mathematically linked to the ratio of positivity to negativity (P/N) in team interaction. By knowing the P/N ratio it is possible to run the nonlinear dynamics model that will portray what types of dynamics are possible for a team. These dynamics are of three types: point attractor, limit cycle, and complexor (complex order, or "chaotic" in the mathematical sense). Low performance teams end up in point attractor dynamics, medium performance teams in limit cycle dynamics, and high performance teams in complexor dynamics.

Lubinski, D., & Benbow, C. P. (2000). States of excellence [Special issue]. American Psychologist, 55(1), 137–50. Retrieved from http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11392857. Research from the individual–differences tradition pertinent to the optimal development of exceptional talent is reviewed, using the theory of work adjustment (TWA) to organize findings. The authors show how TWA concepts and psychometric methods, when used together, can facilitate positive development among talented youth by aligning learning opportunities with salient aspects of each student's individuality. Longitudinal research and more general theoretical models of (adult) academic and intellectual development support this approach. This analysis also uncovers common threads running through several positive psychological concepts (e.g., effectance motivation, flow, and peak experiences). The authors conclude by underscoring some important ideals from counseling psychology for fostering intellectual development and psychological well–being. These include conducting a multifaceted assessment, focusing on strength, helping people make choices, and providing a developmental context for bridging educational and industrial psychology to facilitate positive psychological growth throughout the life span.

Luthans, F., & Avolio, B. J. (2009). Inquiry unplugged: Building on Hackmanʼs potential perils of POB. Journal of Organizational Behavior, 30(2), 323–328. doi:10.1002/job.590. In this rejoinder to Hackman's counterpoint piece on positive organizational behavior (POB), we again take a positive, inquiry approach. We address and build out each of his identified potential perils with the aim of accelerating the journey of POB understanding, research, and application.

Luthans, F., & Avolio, B. J. (2009). The "point" of positive organizational behavior. Journal of Organizational Behavior, 30(2), 291–307. doi:10.1002/job.589.Perhaps the most important "Point" we would like to make in this "Point–Counterpoint" on positive organizational behavior is the role that research must play in this evolving area of study. We follow this point on the importance of research by drawing from recent findings that indicate in discussions such as this point and counterpoint, that taking a positive approach leads to more in–depth inquiry, whereas a negative perspective leads to advocacy and in our view less learning potential. Thus, the positive perspective we take in this "Point" piece is to identify and make a deep inquiry into the major issues and questions surrounding positive organizational behavior (POB). We consciously try to avoid taking an advocacy position. Specifically, after first setting the stage with the background and status of POB, we draw from the lessons that can be learned from positive psychology and then make an inquiry into "Why POB?" and exactly "What is POB?" The article concludes with further inquiry into the role the negative does and can play, and finally how POB relates to our recent work in authentic leadership development.

Luthans, F., Norman, S. M., Avolio, B. J., & Avey, J. B. (2008). The mediating role of psychological capital in the supportive organizational climate—employee performance relationship. Journal of Organizational Behavior, 29(2), 219–238. doi:10.1002/job.507. Although the value of a supportive organizational climate has been recognized over the years, there is a need for better understanding of its relationship with employee outcomes. This study investigates whether the recently emerging core construct of positive psychological capital (consisting of hope, resilience, optimism, and efficacy) plays a role in mediating the effects of a supportive organizational climate with employee outcomes. Utilizing three diverse samples, results show that employees' psychological capital is positively related to their performance, satisfaction, and commitment and a supportive climate is related to employees' satisfaction and commitment. The study's major hypothesis that employees' psychological capital mediates the relationship between supportive climate and their performance was also supported. The implications of these findings conclude the article.

Luvmour, J. (2010). Nurturing children's well-being: A developmental response to trends of overdiagnosis and overmedication. Journal of Humanistic Psychology, 51(3), 350-368. doi:10.1177/0022167810386958 Too many children today are being diagnosed with affective mood disorders and then medicated. Yet because the child's experience of self and world takes place in the medium of the family system, parents can learn how to mitigate childhood mood disorders by creating an environment based on child development principles that nurtures the child's well-being. As discussed by Erik Erikson and Francis Wicks, adults tend to project their own unresolved and unconscious emotions onto their children. This article posits a developmental response to the diagnosis–treatment medical-model perspective that pervades modern-day psychiatry. Well-being flourishes in both child and adult when the adult understands child development principles, communicates with the child in developmentally appropriate ways, and creates environments that nurture the child's developmental imperatives. When those developmental imperatives are met, emotional problems can be prevented before they arise. When an adult who is motivated by care in relationship with a child can learn how to nurture the child's developmental needs, then it is likely that subsequent intersubjective experiences may be affected positively.

Lyubomirsky, S. (2001). Why are some people happier than others? The role of cognitive and motivational processes in well–being [Special issue]. American Psychologist, 56(3), 239–249. doi:10.1037//0003–066X.56.3.239. Addressing the question of why some people are happier than others is important for both theoretical and practical reasons and should be a central goal of a comprehensive positive psychology. Following a construal theory of happiness, the author proposes that multiple cognitive and motivational processes moderate the impact of the objective environment on well–being. Thus, to understand why some people are happier than others, one must understand the cognitive and motivational processes that serve to maintain, and even enhance, enduring happiness and transient mood. The author's approach has been to explore hedonically relevant psychological processes, such as social comparison, dissonance reduction, self–reflection, self–evaluation, and person perception, in chronically happy and unhappy individuals. In support of a construal framework, self–rated happy and unhappy people have been shown to differ systematically in the particular cognitive and motivational strategies they use. Promising research directions for positive psychology in pursuit of the sources of happiness, as well as the implications of the construal approach for prescriptions for enhancing well–being, are discussed.

Lyubomirsky, S. (2008). The how of happiness: A scientific approach to getting the life you want. New York, NY: Penguin.

Lyubomirsky, S., & Abbe, A. (2003). Positive psychology's legs [Special issue]. Psychological Inquiry, 14, 132–136. doi:10.1207/S15327965PLI1402_03

Lyubomirsky, S., King, L., & Diener, E. (2005). The benefits of frequent positive affect: does happiness lead to success? Psychological bulletin, 131(6), 803–55. doi:10.1037/0033–2909.131.6.803. Numerous studies show that happy individuals are successful across multiple life domains, including marriage, friendship, income, work performance, and health. The authors suggest a conceptual model to account for these findings, arguing that the happiness–success link exists not only because success makes people happy, but also because positive affect engenders success. Three classes of evidence––cross–sectional, longitudinal, and experimental––are documented to test their model. Relevant studies are described and their effect sizes combined meta–analytically. The results reveal that happiness is associated with and precedes numerous successful outcomes, as well as behaviors paralleling success. Furthermore, the evidence suggests that positive affect––the hallmark of well–being––may be the cause of many of the desirable characteristics, resources, and successes correlated with happiness. Limitations, empirical issues, and important future research questions are discussed.

Lyubomirsky, S., & Lepper, H. S. (1999). A measure of subjective happiness: Preliminary reliability and construct validation. Social indicators research, 46(2), 137–155. Retrieved from http://www.springerlink.com/index/U07421G90J170805.pdf Using a ''subjectivist'' approach to the assessment of happiness, a new 4–item measure of global subjective happiness was developed and validated in 14 studies with a total of 2 732 participants. Data was collected in the United States from students on two college campuses and one high school campus, from community adults in two California cities, and from older adults. Students and community adults in Moscow, Russia also participated in this research. Results indicated that the Subjective Happiness Scale has high internal consistency, which was found to be stable across samples. Test–retest and self–peer correlations suggested good to excellent reliability, and construct validation studies of convergent and discriminant validity confirmed the use of this scale to measure the construct of subjective happiness. The rationale for developing a new measure of happiness, as well as advantages of this scale, are discussed.

Macleod, A. K. (2012). Well-being, positivity and mental health: An introduction to the special issue. Clinical psychology & psychotherapy, 19, 279-82. doi:10.1002/cpp.1794 Enhancing well-being, as opposed to reducing distress, has traditionally not been a focus for clinical practice. There are differences in views about the nature of well-being, but enhancing well-being in clinical settings is a straightforward goal whatever concept of well-being is adopted. Reasons for adopting a well-being enhancing, as well as a distress-reducing, focus include the fact that many psychological problems do not fit the simple acute treatment model of disorder, that positive experience inhibits negative experience, and that people can benefit from therapists seeing them as more than the sum of their problems. In recent years, well-being has been of increasing interest to researchers and clinicians, and enhancing well-being is emerging as a potentially valuable element of effective clinical practice. KEY PRACTITIONER MESSAGE: Enhancing well-being has been relatively neglected as a therapeutic goal. There are good reasons for seeing well-being enhancement as a valuable goal for clinical practice, alongside the more traditional goal of distress-reduction. Useful work is emerging in this area from clinicians and clinical researchers.

Maddi, S. R. (2006). Building an integrated positive psychology. The Journal of Positive Psychology, 1(4), 226–229. doi:10.1080/17439760600885721. The recent emphasis on positive psychology is welcome, and has spurred much relevant research. But, there are still many unresolved conceptual and research issues, which seem to be increasing rather than decreasing. This highlights the importance of conceptually more detailed and comprehensive approaches, so that development of the field can be hastened by addressing emerging issues definitively. The present paper outlines a potentially useful conceptual approach. The paper concludes with a call for issue–resolving research through which orientations and actions proposed as part of positive psychology can be compared in their contributions to performance and health.

Maddi, S. R. (2006). Hardiness: The courage to grow from stresses. The Journal of Positive Psychology, 1(3), 160–168. doi:10.1080/17439760600619609 The recent emphasis on positive psychology is welcome, and has spurred much relevant research. But, there are still many unresolved conceptual and research issues, as more variables are being proposed as relevant. As part of this process, the present paper proposes hardiness as an addition to positive psychology. Hardiness is a combination of attitudes that provides the courage and motivation to do the hard, strategic work of turning stressful circumstances from potential disasters into growth opportunities. In this regard, the inherently stressful nature of living is discussed. Also clarified are the particular aspects of excellence in performance and health to which hardiness is relevant. The paper concludes with a call for issue–resolving research through which orientations and actions proposed as part of positive psychology can be compared in their contributions to performance and health. Two studies along these lines have found hardiness more powerful than optimism and religiousness in coping with stresses.

Maddi, S. R., Khoshaba, D. M., Harvey, R. H., Fazel, M., & Resurreccion, N. (2010). The personality construct of hardiness, V: Relationships with the construction of existential meaning in life. Journal of Humanistic Psychology. doi:10.1177/0022167810388941. In the past 25 years, personality hardiness has been emphasized as a composite of the interrelated attitudes of commitment, control, and challenge that together provide the existential courage and motivation to turn stressful circumstances from potential disasters into growth opportunities. As such, hardiness has become considered the pathway to resilience and is increasingly used in consulting work. This study continues the construct validation of hardiness, using its latest measure, the Personal Views Survey III–R. In a large sample of undergraduates, this test showed adequate internal consistency reliability and absence of relationship to socially desirable responding. Furthermore, as expected, hardiness was positively related to measures of the ongoing, existential process of finding meaning through experiencing rather than imposing preexisting notions of what life is all about.

Magyar–Moe, J. (2009). Therapist's guide to positive psychological interventions. New York, NY: Elsevier

Mancini, A. D., Bonanno, G., & Clark, A. E. (2011). Stepping off the hedonic treadmill. Journal of Individual Differences, 32(3), 144–152. doi:10.1027/1614–0001/a000047. Theorists have long maintained that people react to major life events but then eventually return to a setpoint of subjective well–being. Yet prior research is inconclusive regarding the extent of interindividual variability. Recent theoretical models suggest that there should be heterogeneity in long–term stress responding (Bonanno, 2004; Muthén & Muthén, 2000). To test this idea, we used latent growth mixture modeling to identify specific patterns of individual variation in response to three major life events (bereavement, divorce, and marriage). A four–class trajectory solution provided the best fit for bereavement and marriage, while a three–class solution provided the best fit for divorce. Relevant covariates predicted trajectory class membership. The modal response across events was a relatively flat trajectory (i.e., no change). Nevertheless, some trajectories diverged sharply from the modal response. Despite the tendency to maintain preevent levels of SWB, there are multiple and often divergent trajectories in response to bereavement, divorce, and marriage, underscoring the essential role of individual differences.

Manderscheid, R. W., Ryff, C. D., Freeman, E. J., McKnight–Eily, L. R., Dhingra, S., & Strine, T. W. (2009). Evolving definitions of mental illness and wellness. Preventing Chronic Disease, 7(1), A19. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Retrieved from http://www.pubmedcentral.nih.gov/articlerender.fcgi?artid=2811514&tool=pmcentrez&rendertype=abstract. Understanding of the definitions of wellness and illness has changed from the mid–20th century to modern times, moving from a diagnosis–focused to a person–focused definition of mental illnesses, and from an "absence of disease" model to one that stresses positive psychological function for mental health. Currently, wellness refers to the degree to which one feels positive and enthusiastic about oneself and life, whereas illness refers to the presence of disease. These definitions apply to physical as well as mental illness and wellness. In this article, we build on the essential concepts of wellness and illness, discuss how these definitions have changed over time, and discuss their importance in the context of health reform and health care reform. Health reform refers to efforts focused on health, such as health promotion and the development of positive well–being. Health care reform refers to efforts focused on illness, such as treatment of disease and related rehabilitation efforts.

Marar, Z. (2003). The happiness paradox. London, England: Reaktion.

Martin, L. L. (2003). Editors' note: Some thoughts about Prof. Richard S. Lazarus [Special issue]. Psychological Inquiry, 14(2), 91–92. doi:10.1207/S15327965PLI1402_01

Martin, L. L., Sanders, M., Shirk, S. D., & Burgin, C. (2011). When too much is not enough: What constitutes an optimal explanation in psychology? Psychological Inquiry, 22(1), 32-35. doi:10.1080/1047840X.2011.545980

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Maslow, A. H. (with D. C. Stephens & G. Heil) (1998). Maslow on management. New York, NY: Wiley.

Maslow, A. H., & Stephens, D. C. (2000). The Maslow business reader. New York, NY: Wiley.

Massimini, F., & Delle Fave, A. (2000). Individual development in a bio–cultural perspective [Special issue]. American Psychologist, 55(1), 24–33. doi:10.1037//0003–066X.55.l.24. Biological and cultural inheritance deeply influence daily human behavior. However, individuals actively interact with bio–cultural information. Throughout their lives, they preferentially cultivate a limited subset of activities, values, and personal interests. This process, defined as psychological selection, is strictly related to the quality of subjective experience. Specifically, cross–cultural studies have highlighted the central role played by optimal experience or flow, the most positive and complex daily experience reported by the participants. It is characterized by high involvement, deep concentration, intrinsic motivation, and the perception of high challenges matched by adequate personal skills. The associated activities represent the basic units of psychological selection. Flow can therefore influence the selective transmission of bio–cultural information and the process of bio–cultural evolution.

Matthews, G., & Zeidner, M. (2003). Negative appraisals of positive psychology: A mixed–valence endorsement of Lazarus [Special issue]. Psychological Inquiry, 14(2), 137–143. doi:10.1207/S15327965PLI1402_03

Mauss, I. B., Tamir, M., Anderson, C. L., & Savino, N. S. (2011). Can seeking happiness make people happy? Paradoxical effects of valuing happiness. Emotion. doi:10.1037/a0022010. Happiness is a key ingredient of well–being. It is thus reasonable to expect that valuing happiness will have beneficial outcomes. We argue that this may not always be the case. Instead, valuing happiness could be self–defeating, because the more people value happiness, the more likely they will feel disappointed. This should apply particularly in positive situations, in which people have every reason to be happy. Two studies support this hypothesis. In Study 1, female participants who valued happiness more (vs. less) reported lower happiness when under conditions of low, but not high, life stress. In Study 2, compared to a control group, female participants who were experimentally induced to value happiness reacted less positively to a happy, but not a sad, emotion induction. This effect was mediated by participants' disappointment at their own feelings. Paradoxically, therefore, valuing happiness may lead people to be less happy just when happiness is within reach.

Mayer, J. D., & Lang, J. L. (2011). A three-dimensional view of personality. Psychological Inquiry, 22(1), 36-39. doi:10.1080/1047840X.2011.544635

McAdams, D., & Manczak, E. (2011). What is a "level" of personality? Psychological Inquiry, 22(1), 40-44. doi:10.1080/1047840X.2011.544026

McDonald, M., & OʼCallaghan, J. (2008). Positive psychology: A Foucauldian critique [Special issue]. The Humanistic Psychologist, 36(2), 127–142. doi:10.1080/08873260802111119. This article analyzes and critiques some of the "truth claims" of positive psychology by applying Foucault's concepts of power/knowledge, discipline, and governmentality. It illustrates how positive psychology deploys mechanisms to devalue, subjugate, and discredit humanistic psychology. It also illustrates how positive psychology privileges particular modes of functioning by classifying and categorizing character strengths and virtues, supporting a neo–liberal economic and political discourse. Last, it offers an alternative position to the prescriptive and constraining ideology of positive psychology. Such a position enables a meta–perspective and reflexivity that could sustain a flexible approach to understanding key issues like human happiness and well–being, as well as open the way for a more productive, rather than adversarial, dialogue, with humanistic psychology.

McGregor, I., & Little, B. R. (1998). Personal projects, happiness, and meaning: On doing well and being yourself. Journal of personality and social psychology, 74, 494-512. Retrieved from http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/9491589 Personal Projects Analysis (B. R. Little, 1983) was adapted to examine relations between participants' appraisals of their goal characteristics and orthogonal happiness and meaning factors that emerged from factor analyses of diverse well-being measures. In two studies with 146 and 179 university students, goal efficacy was associated with happiness and goal integrity was associated with meaning. A new technique for classifying participants according to emergent identity themes is introduced. In both studies, identity-compensatory predictors of happiness were apparent. Agentic participants were happiest if their goals were supported by others, communal participants were happiest if their goals were fun, and hedonistic participants were happiest if their goals were being accomplished. The distinction between happiness and meaning is emphasized, and the tension between efficacy and integrity is discussed. Developmental implications are discussed with reference to results from archival data from a sample of senior managers.

McKnight, P. E., & Kashdan, T. B. (2009). Purpose in life as a system that creates and sustains health and well–being: An integrative, testable theory. Review of General Psychology, 13(3), 242–251. doi:10.1037/a0017152 Purpose—a cognitive process that defines life goals and provides personal meaning—may help explain disparate empirical social science findings. Devoting effort and making progress toward life goals provides a significant, renewable source of engagement and meaning. Purpose offers a testable, causal system that synthesizes outcomes including life expectancy, satisfaction, and mental and physical health. These outcomes may be explained best by considering the motivation of the individual—a motivation that comes from having a purpose. We provide a detailed definition with specific hypotheses derived from a synthesis of relevant findings from social, behavioral, biological, and cognitive literatures. To illustrate the uniqueness of the purpose model, we compared purpose with competing contemporary models that offer similar predictions. Addressing the structural features unique to purpose opens opportunities to build upon existing causal models of "how and why" health and well–being develop and change over time.

McLaffery, C. L., & Kirylo, J. D. (2001). Prior positive psychologists proposed personality and spiritual growth. American Psychologist, 56(1), 84–85. doi:10.1037/0003–066X.56.1.84b Applauds M. E. P. Seligman and M. Csikszentmihalyi (see record 2000–13324–001) and the other authors of the special issue on positive psychology (American Psychologist, 2000[Jan], Vol 55[1]). In this commentary, C. L. McLafferty and J. D. Kirylo outline an overarching theoretical framework for a positive psychology, supported by psychoanalytic, existential, humanistic, and transpersonal theories. Jung, V. R. Frankl, Maslow, and R. Assagioli emphasized wholeness and wellness without encouraging narcissism, though admittedly with little empirical support. Each of these theorists implicitly or explicitly acknowledged two overlapping processes of growth: the emergence of personality and the alignment of that personality with a transcendent (spiritual) center.

McLean, K. C., Pasupathi, M., & Pals, J. L. (2007). Selves creating stories creating selves: A process model of self–development. Personality and Social Psychology Review, 11(3), 262–78. doi:10.1177/1088868307301034. This article is focused on the growing empirical emphasis on connections between narrative and self–development. The authors propose a process model of self–development in which storytelling is at the heart of both stability and change in the self. Specifically, we focus on how situated stories help develop and maintain the self with reciprocal impacts on enduring aspects of self, specifically self–concept and the life story. This article emphasizes the research that has shown how autobiographical stories affect the self and provides a direction for future work to maximize the potential of narrative approaches to studying processes of self–development.

McLellan, J. A., & Youniss, J. (2003). Two systems of youth service: Determinants of voluntary and required youth community service. Journal of Youth and Adolescence, 32(1), 47–58. Springer. Retrieved July 17, 2011, from http://www.springerlink.com/index/T325388130028772.pdf. Although an increasing number of schools mandate service, this requirement is seen by some as self–contradictory, especially in contrast to voluntary service. Looking closely at the service process, we argue that the categories of required and voluntary, do not in themselves convey the nature of service students might do with implications for the benefits they may derive from service. We report data from students in 2 high schools to support our case. Both schools required service, but one integrated it into the curriculum whereas the other left choice of service to individual students. Students in the former school were more apt to do the kinds of service that engage students cognitively and emotionally and involve them in reflection on politics and morals. Apart from fulfilling their requirement, many of the students also did volunteer service of the kinds that were potentially beneficial. These students were likely to have parents and best friends who also did service and to belong to churches and civic organizations that sponsored or encouraged service as part of an ideological commitment. The data support the idea that required and volunteer service can be usefully viewed as operating according to separate regimens. Nevertheless, both have the potential for yielding benefits when service is viewed as providing youth with opportunities to learn about systems of meaning through participatory action. From the viewpoint of educational policy, schools can help students most when they organize service strategically and integrate service into the academic curriculum.

McMahan, E., & Renken, M. D. (2011). Eudaimonic conceptions of well–being, meaning in life, and self–reported well–being: Initial test of a mediational model. Personality and Individual Differences, 51(5), 589–594. doi:10.1016/j.paid.2011.05.020 The current study examined relationships between eudaimonic dimensions of individual conceptions of well–being (e.g., self–development, contribution), meaning in life, and self–reported well–being, and whether meaning in life mediates associations between eudaimonic conception dimensions and well–being. A sample of 275 adult volunteers completed several instruments assessing the above constructs. Results from structural equation modeling (SEM) indicated that eudaimonic conception dimensions were positively associated with both meaning in life and well–being. Further, the relationship between eudaimonic conception dimensions and self–reported well–being was found to be partially mediated by meaning in life. The findings of the current study thus suggest that the experience of meaning in life is one route through which eudaimonic conception of well–being dimensions are associated with self–reported well–being.

McMahon, D. M. (2004). From the happiness of virtue to the virtue of happiness: 400 B.C. – A.D. 1780. Daedalus, 133(2), 5-17. doi:10.1162/001152604323049343

McMahon, D. W. (2005). Happiness: A history. New York, NY: Atlantic Monthly.

McNulty, J. K., & Fincham, F. D. (2011). Beyond positive psychology?: Toward a contextual view of psychological processes and well–being. The American psychologist. doi:10.1037/a0024572 The field of positive psychology rests on the assumption that certain psychological traits and processes are inherently beneficial for well–being. We review evidence that challenges this assumption. First, we review data from 4 independent longitudinal studies of marriage revealing that 4 ostensibly positive processes–forgiveness, optimistic expectations, positive thoughts, and kindness–can either benefit or harm well–being depending on the context in which they operate. Although all 4 processes predicted better relationship well–being among spouses in healthy marriages, they predicted worse relationship well–being in more troubled marriages. Then, we review evidence from other research that reveals that whether ostensibly positive psychological traits and processes benefit or harm well–being depends on the context of various noninterpersonal domains as well. Finally, we conclude by arguing that any movement to promote well–being may be most successful to the extent that it (a) examines the conditions under which the same traits and processes may promote versus threaten well–being, (b) examines both healthy and unhealthy people, (c) examines well–being over substantial periods of time, and (d) avoids labeling psychological traits and processes as positive or negative.

Medlock, G. (2012). The evolving ethic of authenticity: From humanistic to positive psychology. The Humanistic Psychologist, 40(1), 38-57. doi:10.1080/08873267.2012.643687 This article attempts to resolve the apparent tensions between humanistic and positive psychology regarding their respective notions of what constitutes a good life. It argues that an ethic of authenticity provides a unifying normative framework for both traditions, including interpretations of the various dimensions of authenticity and of the moral virtues and principles associated with this ethical ideal. The article provides a working definition of authentic selfhood that draws on both the existential-phenomenological tradition and the communitarian ethical framework associated with positive psychology. It demonstrates how these two very different philosophical traditions contribute to a shared, integrative theory of authentic self-development which, in turn, provides needed clarity to the normative framework of positive psychology.

Meeus, W., Van de Schoot, R., Klimstra, T., & Branje, S. (2011). Personality types in adolescence: Change and stability and links with adjustment and relationships: A five–wave longitudinal study. Developmental psychology, 47(4), 1181–95. doi:10.1037/a0023816We examined change and stability of the 3 personality types identified by Block and Block (1980) and studied their links with adjustment and relationships. We used data from a 5–wave study of 923 early–to–middle and 390 middle–to–late adolescents, thereby covering the ages of 12–20 years. In Study 1, systematic evidence for personality change was found, in that the number of overcontrollers and undercontrollers decreased, whereas the number of resilients increased. Undercontrol, in particular, was found to peak in early–to–middle adolescence. We also found substantial stability of personality types, because 73.5% of the adolescents had the same personality type across the 5 waves. Personality change was mainly characterized by 2 transitions: overcontrol → resiliency and undercontrol → resiliency. The transitional analyses implied that the resilient type serves more often as the end point of personality development in adolescence than do overcontrol and undercontrol. Analyses of the personality type trajectories also revealed that the majority of adolescents who change personality type across 5 years made only 1 transition. Study 2 revealed systematic differences between resilients and overcontrollers in anxiety. Stable resilients were less anxious over time than were stable overcontrollers. Further, change from overcontrol to the resilient type was accompanied by decreases in anxiety, whereas change from the resilient type to overcontrol was accompanied by an increase in anxiety. Similarly, systematic differences between personality types were found in the formation of intimate relationships. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2011 APA, all rights reserved).

Meyers, J., & Meyers, B. (2003). Bi–directional influences between positive psychology and primary prevention [Special issue]. School Psychology Quarterly, 18(2), 222–229. doi:10.1521/scpq. The constructs associated with primary prevention are used to consider the tenets of positive psychology. At the same time, issues from the literature on positive psychology can help to expand and strengthen research on primary prevention. Conclusions are reached – about the potential bi–directional influences that these fields can have on each other that may serve to augment theory, research, and practice.

Miller, A. (2008). A critique of positive psychology – or "the new science of happiness [Special issue]." Journal of Philosophy of Education, 42(3–4), 591–608. doi:10.1111/j.1467–9752.2008.00646.x. This paper argues that the new science of positive psychology is founded on a whole series of fallacious arguments; these involve circular reasoning, tautology, failure to clearly define or properly apply terms, the identification of causal relations where none exist, and unjustified generalisation. Instead of demonstrating that positive attitudes explain achievement, success, well–being and happiness, positive psychology merely, associates mental health with a particular personality type: a cheerful, outgoing, goal–driven, status–seeking extravert.

Miller, J. G. (1978). Living systems. New York, NY: McGraw-Hill.

Miller, S. M., Sherman, A. C., & Christensen, A. J. (2010). Introduction to special series: The great debate––evaluating the health implications of positive psychology [Special issue]. Annals of behavioral medicine, 39(1), 1–3. doi:10.1007/s12160–010–9173–9. In recent years, investigators have focused increased attention on positive psychology constructs and their associations with health outcomes, such as morbidity, mortality, and adaptation to illness. The database regarding some of these concepts and models has grown appreciably, but work in this area has been subject to controversy.

Mollen, D. (2006). Positive psychology: Considerations and implications for counseling psychology [Special issue]. The Counseling Psychologist, 34(2), 304–312. doi:10.1177/0011000005283522. Why has the specialty of counseling psychology been overlooked in the larger conversation about positive psychology? Is it reasonable that counseling psychology claims positive psychology as its own? What are some of the problems in defining positive psychology, and how does the lack of consensus around operationalization thwart discourse on this construct? In this reaction, the authors address these questions and pose implications for positive psychology beyond the typical applications to clients.

Mongrain, M., & Anselmo-Matthews, T. (2012). Do Positive Psychology Exercises Work? A Replication of Seligman et al.. Journal of Clinical Psychology, 68(4), 382-389. doi:10.1002/jclp.21839 Objectives: The current work replicated a landmark study conducted by Seligman and colleagues (2005) that demonstrated the long-term benefits of positive psychology exercises (PPEs). In the original study, two exercises administered over 1 week ("Three Good Things" and "Using your Signature Strengths in a New Way") were found to have long-lasting effects on depression and happiness (Seligman, Steen, Park, & Peterson, 2005). Design: These exercises were tested here using the same methodology except for improvements to the control condition, and the addition of a second "positive placebo" to isolate the common factor of accessing positive, self-relevant constructs. This component control design was meant to assess the effect of expectancies for success (expectancy control), as well the cognitive access of positive information about the self (positive placebo). Results: Repeated measures analyses showed that the PPEs led to lasting increases in happiness, as did the positive placebo. The PPEs did not exceed the control condition in producing changes in depression over time. Conclusions: Brief, positive psychology interventions may boost happiness through a common factor involving the activation of positive, self-relevant information rather than through other specific mechanisms. Finally, the effects of PPEs on depression may be more modest than previously assumed.

Moore, K., Lippman, L., & Brown, B. (2004). Indicators of child well–being: The promise for positive youth development [Special issue]. The Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science, 591(1), 125–145. doi:10.1177/0002716203260103. In the current U.S. indicators system, measures of child well–being focus primarily on negative outcomes and problems. We measure and track those behaviors that adults wish to prevent. For the most part, the indicators system does not monitor positive development and outcomes. Such a system of child well–being indicators lacks the breadth and balance required in a science–based measurement system. Moreover, it lacks measures of the kinds of constructs that resonate among adolescents themselves and adults. Measures are needed for multiple domains of development, including educational achievement and cognitive attainment, health and safety, social and emotional development, and self–sufficiency. Positive outcomes are often critiqued as soft, highlighting the importance of rigorous conceptualization and measurement, including conceptual clarity and face validity, age appropriate measures, and psychometric rigor. In addition, constructs and measures need to be presented in ways that are understandable to policy makers and the public and that work across varied subgroups and levels of governance. Ideally, comparable measures will be used for indicators, for program evaluation, and in basic research studies of child and adolescent development.

Mruk, C. (2008). The psychology of self–esteem: A potential common ground for humanistic positive psychology and positivistic positive psychology[Special issue]. The Humanistic Psychologist, 36(2), 143–158. doi:10.1080/08873260802111176. Today there are 2 positive psychologies: 1 that is humanistic and 1 that is not. Both focus on researching, understanding, and fostering well–being, optimal functioning, and healthy social institutions. However, in addition to emerging at different times, the 2 psychologies are characterized by major philosophical and methodological differences that help determine what is seen and not seen from each point of view. One area where these distinctions show up most strikingly is in the psychology of self–esteem. Although humanistic positive psychology understands self–esteem as playing a key role in human behavior, the more positivistic positive psychology seems to have largely missed such an important factor. This article examines how the psychology of self–esteem could be a meeting ground between these 2 approaches.

Myers, D. G. (2000). The funds, friends, and faith of happy people [Special issue]. American Psychologist, 55(1), 56. doi:10.1037//0003–066X.55. New studies are revealing predictors of subjective well–being, often assessed as self–reported happiness and life satisfaction. Worldwide, most people report being at least moderately happy, regardless of age and gender. As part of their scientific pursuit of happiness, researchers have examined possible associations between happiness and (a) economic growth and personal income, (b) close relationships, and (c) religious faith.

Muse, L., Harris, S. G., Giles, W. F., & Feild, H. S. (2008). Work–life benefits and positive organizational 192. doi:10.1002/job.506. Focusing on the employee well–being component of positive organizational behavior (POB), this study explores the relationship between organization provided benefit programs and POB. Specifically, we ask the question: are employees' use and perceived value of a work–life benefit package associated with their positive attitudes and behaviors in the workplace? Grounded in social exchange theory and the norm of reciprocity, we develop and estimate a model identifying differential relationships of benefit use and perceived benefit value with employee attitudinal and performance outcomes. Employing the multigroup method, the hypothesized model was fit to the data of two dissimilar organizations. Results support our hypothesis that providing work–life benefits employees use and/or value is part of a positive exchange between the employee and employer. This exchange is positively related to employees' feelings of perceived organizational support and affective commitment to the organization and reciprocation in the form of higher levels of task and contextual performance behaviors. Results also revealed that employees' perceptions of benefit program value play a critical role regardless of actual program use in influencing attitudes and behavior. Our findings emphasize the importance of valuing employees and investing in their well–being inside as well as outside the workplace.

Napper, R. (2009). Positive psychology and transactional analysis. Transactional Analysis Journal, 39(1), 61–74. Retrieved June 11, 2011, from http://www.taworks.co.uk/level_7/positive psychology 1–09 napper final formatted OK.pdf. This articles describes the author's encounter with two "positive" psychologies—transactional analysis and positive psychology— and some of the similarities and differences in their founding, evolution, and branding. Because transactional analysis has remarkable properties as a metalanguage, many positive psychology ideas can be considered from a TA perspective and translated into TA concepts. On the other hand, positive psychology may be able to provide research evidence for concepts from transactional analysis. This comparison highlights the contradictions deeply embedded within transactional analysis theory between a philosophical framework based on the empirical scientific paradigm of the 1950s, which focuses on "objectivity," and a more contemporary constructivist philosophy, which focuses on "subjectivity."

Nes, R. B., Czajkowski, N., Roysamb, E., Reichborn–Kjennerud, T., & Tambs, K. (2008). Well–being and ill–being: shared environments, shared genes? The Journal of Positive Psychology, 3(4), 253–265. doi:10.1080/17439760802399323. The nature of the associations between life satisfaction, anxiety, and depression remains elusive. Using questionnaire data from a large population–based sample (N=6326) of young adult Norwegian twins (aged 18–31 years) we explored the extent to which latent genetic and environmental factors are (1) common or distinct, and (2) sex–specific. Phenotypic correlations ranged between 0.44 and 0.70 in females, and between 0.41 and 0.69 in males. Environmental influences accounted for 75% of these correlations in females, and less than 50% in males. Genetic and environmental sources of life satisfaction, symptoms of anxiety, and symptoms of depression were shared mostly, but the magnitude of the effects was different in males and females. In both sexes, however, aetiological factors enhancing life satisfaction were simultaneously protecting against feelings of sadness and displeasure, but contributed less to countervailing anxiety and tension.

Nettle, D. (2005). Happiness: The science behind your smile. New York, NY: Oxford.

Nicholson, H. J., Collins, C., & Holmer, H. (2004). Youth as people: The protective aspects of youth development in after–school settings [Special issue]. The Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science, 591(1), 55–71. doi:10.1177/0002716203260081. Youth development organizations have a common commitment to young people's physical, emotional, and educational growth and development. A youth–centered atmosphere where young people feel supported and empowered by the community distinguishes successful programs from others that approach programming without considering young people the most important stake–holders. Programs serve youth best when the environments in which they function are intentionally inclusive, multicultural, and systematically nondiscriminatory. A safe and supportive place in which to develop an identity and confront the tough issues and extraordinary pressures of growing up is at the core of youth development environments that make a real difference. Some of the best youth development programs also make the successful link between volunteerism and positive mental health and support the concept that community service is an important component of subsequent civic engagement.

Nicholson, I. (2007). Maslow: Toward a psychology of being. The General Psychologist, 42, 26-27. Retrieved from http://people.stu.ca/~nicholson/Ian_Nicholson /Research_files /Maslow%20-%20Toward%20a%20Psychology%20of%20Being %20(rev%202)%20copy.pdf

Nickerson, C. (2006). Theory/analysis mismatch: Comment on Fredrickson and Joiner's (2002) test of the broaden-and-build theory of positive emotions. Journal of Happiness Studies, 8(4), 537-561. doi:10.1007/s10902-006-9030-5 Fredrickson's (1998, 'What good are positive emotions?', Review of General Psychology 2, pp. 300–319; 2001, 'The role of positive emotions in positive psychology: The broaden-and-build theory of positive emotions', American Psychologist 56, pp. 218–226) broaden-and-build theory of positive emotions posits that positive emotions improve coping skills and that improved coping skills increase positive emotions, resulting in an upward spiral toward emotional well-being. Fredrickson and Joiner (2002, 'Positive emotions trigger upward spirals toward emotional well-being', Psychological Science 13, pp. 172–175) claimed that the results of their analyses supported the broaden-and-build theory but in fact their analyses did not test this theory. The broaden-and-build theory clearly describes a within-occasion across-persons psychological process; the analyses, however, tested a within-occasion across persons theory.

Niemiec, C. P., Ryan, R. M., & Deci, E. L. (2009). The path taken: Consequences of Attaining Intrinsic and Extrinsic Aspirations in Post–College Life. Journal of research in personality, 73(3), 291–306. doi:10.1016/j.jrp.2008.09.001. Life goals, or aspirations, organize and direct behavior over extended periods of time. The present study, guided by self–determination theory, examined the consequences of pursuing and attaining aspirations over a one–year period in a post–college sample. Results indicated that placing importance on either intrinsic or extrinsic aspirations related positively to attainment of those goals. Yet, whereas attainment of intrinsic aspirations related positively to psychological health, attainment of extrinsic aspirations did not; indeed, attainment of extrinsic aspirations related positively to indicators of ill–being. Also as predicted, the association between change in attainment of intrinsic aspirations and change in psychological health was mediated by change in the satisfaction of the basic psychological needs for autonomy, competence, and relatedness. Discussion focuses on the idea that not all goal attainment is beneficial; rather, attainment of aspirations with different contents relates differentially to psychological health.

Norem, J. K., & Chang, E. C. (2002). The positive psychology of negative thinking [Special issue]. Journal of Clinical Psychology, 58(9), 993–1001. doi:10.1002/jclp.10094. As the positive psychology movement gains momentum, both within psychology and in the broader culture, it becomes increasingly important to ensure that the complexity of individual personality and psychological processes do not get lost in a "one–size–fits–all" approach to improving human functioning. In this article, we consider some of the ways that the costs and benefits of different kinds of optimism and pessimism may vary across different individuals, situations, and cultural contexts. We use defensive pessimism research to illustrate that there are times when pessimism and negative thinking are indeed positive psychology, as they lead to better performance and personal growth. We also consider the ways in which dominant American culture––and research in psychology––may underestimate some of the costs of optimism.

Norrish, J. M., & Vella-Brodrick, D. (2007). Is the study of happiness a worthy scientific pursuit? Social Indicators Research, 87(3), 393-407. doi:10.1007/s11205-007-9147-x This paper critiques the view that the study of happiness is not a worthy scientific pursuit. The happiness set point and hedonic treadmill theories denote the complexity of increasing happiness levels due to genetic limitations and adaptation, however, there is mounting evidence to suggest that with the use of appropriate measures and specific interventions aimed at fostering strengths and virtues, happiness can be increased. Furthermore, the benefits of investigating methods for increasing happiness include improvements in physical, psychological and social health and well-being. It is concluded that approaching human needs from a top down or holistic standpoint where individuals can use their strengths to overcome life's challenges, is beneficial to health and well-being. Hence, the study of happiness is a worthy scientific pursuit.

Norrish, J., & Vella-Brodrick, D. (2009). Positive psychology and adolescents: Where are we now? Where to from here? Australian Psychologist, 44(4), 270-278. doi:10.1080/00050060902914103 The purpose of this paper was to integrate literature on positive psychology and adolescent well-being to provide a cohesive platform for future research and discussion. It is aimed at researchers, and mental health and educational professionals who are interested in the empirical evidence behind using positive psychology interventions with adolescents. The positive psychology concepts reviewed are: the authentic happiness theory, flow, hope, coaching, gratitude, kindness, and strengths-based interventions. Although positive psychology is only in its infancy, and more research in adolescent populations is needed, support for positive psychology interventions in fostering adolescent mental health is steadily accumulating.

Nota, L., Soresi, S., Ferrari, L., & Wehmeyer, M. L. (2010). A multivariate analysis of the self–determination of adolescents. Journal of Happiness Studies, 12(2), 245–266. doi: 10.1007/s10902–010–9191–0. Self–determination is a general psychological construct within the organizing structure of theories of human agentic behavior. People who are self–determined act volitionally to serve as the causal agent in their lives. To provide a fuller understanding of the self–determination of adolescents, this study collected data on self–determination, quality of life, self–efficacy, and assertiveness for more than 1,400 Italian adolescents. We conducted a series of Multivariate Analyses of Variance to examine the relationships among, differences between, and associations with self–determination, including any differences as a function of age and gender as well as differences in quality of life, self–efficacy, and assertiveness as a function of level of self–determination. We also examined which quality of life factors were associated with enhanced self–determination and self–efficacy. Findings support the importance of self–determination to quality of life and enhanced self–efficacy.

Ntoumanis, N., Edmunds, J., & Duda, J. L. (2009). Understanding the coping process from a self–determination theory perspective. British journal of health psychology, 14(Pt 2), 249–60. doi:10.1348/135910708X349352. PURPOSE: To explore conceptual links between the cognitive–motivational–relational theory (CMRT) of coping (Lazarus, 1991) and self–determination theory (SDT) of motivation (Deci & Ryan, 1985). METHOD: We present a very brief overview of the two theories. We also discuss how components from the two theories can be examined together to facilitate research in the health/exercise domain. To this effect, we offer a preliminary integrated model of stress, coping, and motivation, based on the two aforementioned theories, in an attempt to illustrate and instigate research on how motivational factors are implicated in the coping process. CONCLUSION: We believe that the proposed model can serve as a platform for generating new research ideas which, besides their theoretical relevance, may have important applied implications.

Nussbaum, M. C. (2004). Mill between Aristotle & Bentham. Daedalus, 133(2), 60-68. doi:10.1162/001152604323049406

Nussbaum, M. C. (2008). Who is the happy warrior? Philosophy poses questions to psychology [Special issue]. The Journal of Legal Studies, 37(S2), S81–S113. doi:10.1086/587438. Psychology has recently focused attention on subjective states of pleasure, satisfaction, and what is called "happiness." The suggestion has been made in some quarters that a study of these subjective states has important implications for public policy. Sometimes, as in the case of Martin Seligman's "positive psychology" movement, attempts are made to link the empirical findings and the related normative judgments directly to the descriptive and normative insights of ancient Greek ethics and modern virtue ethics. At other times, as with Daniel Kahneman's work, the connection to Aristotle and other ancient Greek thinkers is only indirect, and the connection to British Utilitarianism is paramount; nonetheless, judgments are made that could be illuminated by an examination of the rich philosophical tradition that runs from Aristotle through to John Stuart Mill's criticisms of Bentham.

O'Connor, M., Sanson, A., Hawkins, M. T., Letcher, P., Toumbourou, J. W., Smart, D., Vassallo, S., et al. (2011). Predictors of positive development in emerging adulthood. Journal of youth and adolescence, 40(7), 860–74. doi:10.1007/s10964–010–9593–7 This article responds to recent calls for a focus on successful development in young people and examination of its developmental precursors, in order to identify potentially modifiable targets for interventions. The current study examined child and adolescent precursors of positive functioning in emerging adulthood, including individual characteristics, relationship factors, and connections to the community, using a multidimensional positive development measure at 19–20 years. The sample consisted of 511 males and 647 females who were participants in the Australian Temperament Project, a population based longitudinal study that has followed young people's psychosocial adjustment from infancy to early adulthood. Higher levels of positive development in emerging adulthood were associated with stronger family and peer relationships, better adjustment to the school setting, higher family socioeconomic status, and better emotional control. Some significant gender differences were observed, with emotional control, family relationships, and community orientation all being stronger predictors of males' than of females' positive development. The findings provide possible targets for child and adolescent interventions to promote positive development in early adulthood.

Oishi, S., Diener, E., & Lucas, R. E. (2007). The optimum level of well–being: Can people be too happy? Perspectives on Psychological Science, 2(4), 346–360. doi:10.1111/j.1745–6916.2007.00048.x. Psychologists, self–help gurus, and parents all work to make their clients, friends, and children happier. Recent research indicates that happiness is functional and generally leads to success. However, most people are already above neutral in happiness, which raises the question of whether higher levels of happiness facilitate more effective functioning than do lower levels. Our analyses of large survey data and longitudinal data show that people who experience the highest levels of happiness are the most successful in terms of close relationships and volunteer work, but that those who experience slightly lower levels of happiness are the most successful in terms of income, education, and political participation. Once people are moderately happy, the most effective level of happiness appears to depend on the specific outcomes used to define success, as well as the resources that are available.

Ong, A. D., van Dulmen, M. H M. (2006). Oxford handbook of methods in positive psychology. Oxford, England: Oxford University.

Oswald, A. J., & Powdthavee, N. (2008). Death, happiness, and the calculation of compensatory damages [Special issue]. The Journal of Legal Studies, 37(S2), S217–S251. doi:10.1086/595674. This paper presents a study of the mental distress caused by bereavement. The greatest emotional losses are from the death of a spouse, the second greatest from the death of a child, and the third from the death of a parent. The paper explores how happiness regression equations might be used in tort cases to calculate compensatory damages for emotional harm and pain and suffering. We examine alternative well‐being variables, discuss adaptation, consider the possibility that bereavement affects someone's marginal utility of income, and suggest a procedure for correcting for the endogeneity of income. Although the paper's contribution is methodological and further research is needed, some illustrative compensation amounts are discussed.

Pachana, N. A., Ford, J. H., Andrew, B., & Dobson, A. J. (2005). Relations between companion animals and self–reported health in older women: Cause, effect or artifact [Special issue]? International Journal of Behavioral Medicine, 12(2), 103–110. doi:10.1207/s15327558ijbm1202_8 A large longitudinal dataset on women's health in Australia provided the basis of analysis of potential positive health effects of living with a companion animal. Age, living arrangements, and housing all strongly related to both living with companion animals and health. Methodological problems in using data from observational studies to disentangle a potential association in the presence of substantial effects of demographic characteristics are highlighted. Our findings may help to explain some inconsistencies and contradictions in the literature about the health benefits of companion animals, as well as offer suggestions for ways to move forward in future investigations of human–pet relationships.

Padesky, C. & Mooney, K. (2012). Strengths-based cognitive-behavioural therapy: A four-step model to build resilience. Clinical psychology & psychotherapy, 19, 283-90. doi:10.1002/cpp.1795 Padesky and Mooney's four-step Strengths-Based cognitive-behavioural therapy (CBT) model is designed to help clients build positive qualities. This article shows how it can be used to build and strengthen personal resilience. A structured search for client strengths is central to the approach, and methods designed to bring hidden strengths into client awareness are demonstrated through therapist-client dialogues. Development of positive qualities requires a shift in therapy perspective and different therapy methods from those employed when therapy is designed to ameliorate distress. Required adjustments to classic CBT are highlighted with specific recommendations for clinical modifications designed to support client development of resilience such as a focus on current strengths, the constructive use of imagery and client-generated metaphors. Although the focus of this article is on resilience, this Strengths-Based CBT model offers a template that also can be used to develop other positive human qualities. KEY PRACTITIONER MESSAGE: A four-step strengths-based cognitive-behavioral therapy approach is presented. Therapists help clients identify existing strengths that are used to construct a personal model of resilience. Client-generated imagery and metaphors are particularly potent to help the client remember and creatively employ new positive qualities. Behavioral experiments are designed in which the goal is to stay resilient rather than to achieve problem resolution. Therapists are encouraged to use constructive therapy methods and interview practices including increased use of smiling and silence.

Pargament, K. I., & Sweeney, P. J. (2011). Building spiritual fitness in the Army: An innovative approach to a vital aspect of human development. The American Psychologist, 66(1), 58–64. doi:10.1037/a0021657 This article describes the development of the spiritual fitness component of the Army's Comprehensive Soldier Fitness (CSF) program. Spirituality is defined in the human sense as the journey people take to discover and realize their essential selves and higher order aspirations. Several theoretically and empirically based reasons are articulated for why spirituality is a necessary component of the CSF program: Human spirituality is a significant motivating force, spirituality is a vital resource for human development, and spirituality is a source of struggle that can lead to growth or decline. A conceptual model developed by Sweeney, Hannah, and Snider (2007) is used to identify several psychological structures and processes that facilitate the development of the human spirit. From this model, an educational, computer–based program has been developed to promote spiritual resilience. This program consists of three tiers: (a) building awareness of the self and the human spirit, (b) building awareness of resources to cultivate the human spirit, and (c) building awareness of the human spirit of others. Further research will be needed to evaluate the effectiveness of this innovative and potentially important program.

Park, N. (2004). The role of subjective well–being in positive youth development [Special issue]. The Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science, 591(1), 25–39. doi:10.1177/0002716203260078. Comprehensive perspectives on well–being that include positive aspects of human life such as subjective wellbeing have recently been proposed. Life satisfaction is the cognitive component of subjective well–being and plays an important role in positive development as an indicator, a predictor, a mediator/moderator, and an out–come. Whereas low life satisfaction is associated with psychological, social, and behavior problems, high life satisfaction is related to good adaptation and optimal mental health among youth. Life satisfaction and positive affect mitigate the negative effects of stressful life events and work against the development of psychological and behavioral problems among youth. Supportive parenting, engagement in challenging activities, positive life events, and high–quality interactions with significant others contribute to the development of life satisfaction. Further longitudinal research into the mechanisms of how life satisfaction plays its role in positive youth development is needed to promote the psychological wellbeing of all youth.

Park, N. (2011). Military children and families: strengths and challenges during peace and war. The American psychologist, 66(1), 65–72. doi:10.1037/a0021249 Throughout history, military children and families have shown great capacity for adaptation and resilience. However, in recent years, unprecedented lengthy and multiple combat deployments of service members have posed multiple challenges for U.S. military children and families. Despite needs to better understand the impact of deployment on military children and families and to provide proper support for them, rigorous research is lacking. Programs exist that are intended to help, but their effectiveness is largely unknown. They need to be better coordinated and delivered at the level of individuals, families, and communities. Research and programs need to take a comprehensive approach that is strengths based and problem focused. Programs for military children and families often focus on the prevention or reduction of problems. It is just as important to recognize their assets and to promote them. This article reviews existing research on military children and families, with attention to their strengths as well as their challenges. Issues in need of further research are identified, especially research into programs that assist military children and families. Military children and families deserve greater attention from psychology.

Park, N., & Peterson, C. (2009). The cultivation of character strengths. In M. Ferrari & G. Potworowski (Eds.), Teaching for Wisdom (pp. 59–77). New York, NY: Springer Science+Business Media B.V. Retrieved from

Park, N., Peterson, C., & Seligman, M. E. P. (2004). Strengths of character and well–being [Special issue]. Journal of Social and Clinical Psychology, 23(5), 603–619. doi:10.1521/jscp.23.5.603.50748. We investigated the relationship between various character strengths and life satisfaction among 5,299 adults from three Internet samples using the Values in Action Inventory of Strengths. Consistently and robustly associated with life satisfaction were hope, zest, gratitude, love, and curiosity. Only weakly associated with life satisfaction, in contrast, were modesty and the intellectual strengths of appreciation of beauty, creativity, judgment, and love of learning. In general, the relationship between character strengths and life satisfaction was monotonic, indicating that excess on any one character strength does not diminish life satisfaction.

Park, N., Peterson, C., & Seligman, M. E. P. (2004). Strengths of character and well–being: A closer look at hope and modesty [Special issue]. Journal of Social and Clinical Psychology, 23(5), 628–634. doi:10.1521/jscp.23.5.628.50749. We took a closer look at the link between character strengths and well–being by following up on suggestions by Snyder (this issue) and Harvey and Pauwels (this issue). We explored the simultaneous association between 24 strengths of character and life satisfaction and found that a number of different strengths independently predicted life satisfaction. Hope was among the important predictors, as Snyder proposed, but it was no more robust a predictor than the character strengths of gratitude, love, and zest. We also found that trauma moderated the association between modesty and well–being, as Harvey and Pauwels hypothesized. With increasing trauma, the correlation between modesty and enthusiasm about life increased in magnitude. These new analyses further our comparative investigation of character strengths and imply that there are different routes to a satisfied life.

Parks, A. C. (2011). The state of positive psychology in higher education: Introduction to the special issue. The Journal of Positive Psychology, 6, 429-431. doi:10.1080/17439760.2011.637729

Patterson, T. G., & Joseph, S. (2007). Person-centered personality theory: Support from self-determination theory and positive psychology. Journal of Humanistic Psychology, 47(1), 117-139. doi:10.1177/0022167806293008 The present article examines the person-centered personality theory of Carl Rogers in light of recent developments in theory and research within the emergent discipline of positive psychology. In particular, the theoretical observations and research findings from self-determination theory are reviewed. It is argued that at the metatheoretical level, person-centered theory and self-determination theory provide similar perspectives, and thus the empirical evidence testing aspects of self-determination theory is equally supportive of the account of personality development, psychological functioning, and the process of therapeutic growth, as hypothesized within person-centered theory. This is an observation that will be of theoretical interest and practical relevance to those who specialize in person-centered therapies. These observations on person-centered metatheoretical assumptions also promise to be of interest to positive psychologists.

Pawelski, J. O. (2003). The promise of positive psychology for the assessment of character. Journal of College and Character, 4(6), 3. Retrieved June 22, 2011, from http://journals.naspa.org/jcc/vol4/iss6/3/. doi:10.2202/1940–1639.1361 Positive psychology is a new and rapidly expanding field focused on the empirical study of human flourishing. One of its central missions is the development of an operationalized classification of the strengths and virtues that constitute character. The aim is to foster the identification, measurement, and cultivation of these strengths and virtues. Also supportive of this aim is the recently published Positive Psychological Assessment: A Handbook of Models and Measures. This presentation gives a brief overview of the positive psychology movement, examines its operationalized definition of character, and considers some of the advantages and disadvantages of the empirical study of character. Appended is a brief annotated bibliography of some important sources in positive psychology.

Pawelski, J. O. (2003). William James, positive psychology, and healthy-mindedness. The Journal of Speculative Philosophy, 17(1), 53-67. doi:10.1353/jsp.2003.0025

Pawelski, J. O. (2004a, Summer). Introduction to William James and positive psychology. Streams of William James, 6(2), 3-4. Retrieved from http:// williamjamesstudies.org/streams.html

Pawelski, J. O. (Ed.). (2004b, Summer). William James and positive psychology. Streams of William James, 6(2). Retrieved from http:// williamjamesstudies.org/streams.html

Paz Galupo, M., Cartwright, K. B., & Savage, L. S. (2009). Cross–category friendships and postformal thought among college students. [Special issue]. Journal of Adult Development, 17(4), 208–214. doi:10.1007/s10804–009–9089–4. Theories of postformal thought (PFT) suggest that cognitive development is enhanced by social interactions where differences must be negotiated. Friendships provide the potential for complex social interactions and are an ideal context in which to explore the relation between cognitive development and the negotiation of social differences. The present research is the first to directly explore the relation between close cross–category friendships and level of postformal cognitive reasoning among college students. Participants from two universities completed questionnaires assessing PFT and friendship characteristics. Results indicate that individuals reported more same–category versus cross–category friendships. This was true for sex, ethnicity, social class, sexual orientation, and age. In addition, individuals high in PFT had more social category differences in their existing close friendships than individuals low in PFT.

Peterson, C. (2000). The future of optimism [Special issue]. American Psychologist, 55(1), 44–55. doi:10.1037//0003–066X.55.1.44. Recent theoretical discussions of optimism as an inherent aspect of human nature converge with empirical investigations of optimism as an individual difference to show that optimism can be a highly beneficial psychological characteristic linked to good mood, perseverance, achievement, and physical health. Questions remain about optimism as a research topic and more generally as a societal value. Is the meaning of optimism richer than its current conceptualization in cognitive terms? Are optimism and pessimism mutually exclusive? What is the relationship between optimism and reality, and what are the costs of optimistic beliefs that prove to be wrong? How can optimism be cultivated? How does optimism play itself out across different cultures? Optimism promises to be one of the important topics of interest to positive social science, as long as it is approached in an even–handed way.

Peterson, C. (2004a). Positive social science. The Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science, 591(1), 186–201. doi:10.1177/0002716203260100.

Peterson, C. (2004b). Preface. The Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science, 591(1), 6–12. doi:10.1177/0002716203260077.

Peterson, C. (2006). Primer in positive psychology. New York, NY: Oxford University.

Peterson, C. (2009). Positive psychology. Reclaiming Children and Youth, 18, 5. Retrieved June 11, 2011, from http://psycnet.apa.org/journals/amp/55/1/5/.

Peterson, C., & Park, N. (2003). Positive psychology as the evenhanded positive psychologist views it [Special issue]. Psychological Inquiry 14, 142–147. doi:10.1207/S15327965PLI1402_03

Peterson, C., & Park, N. (2006). A positive psychology perspective on post–9/11 security. Basic and Applied Social Psychology, 28(4), 357–361. doi:10.1207/s15324834basp2804_9. Positive psychology is a newly–christened field concerned with what makes life most worth living. At first glance, it would seem to have little to say about the post–9/11 world, but its central concerns—positive emotions, good character, and enabling institutions—are all pertinent to how people rise to the occasion of challenge and threat. What is good in life is not the mere absence of what is bad, and any attempts to create security must go beyond the minimization of danger to address how people can flourish in any and all circumstances. The present article discusses some of the implications of positive psychology for understanding and achieving post–9/11 security and flourishing.

Peterson, C., Park, N., & Castro, C. (2011). Assessment for the U.S. Army Comprehensive Soldier Fitness program: The Global Assessment Tool. The American Psychologist, 66(1), 10–8. doi:10.1037/a0021658 Psychology and the U.S. military have a long history of collaboration. The U.S. Army Comprehensive Soldier Fitness (CSF) program aims to measure the psychosocial strengths and assets of soldiers as well as their problems, to identify those in need of basic training in a given domain as well as those who would benefit from advanced training, and then to provide that training. The goals of the CSF program include the promotion of well–being as well as the prevention of problems. Assessment is the linchpin of the CSF program, and the Global Assessment Tool (GAT) is a self–report survey that measures psychosocial fitness in emotional, social, family, and spiritual domains. We review the history of psychological assessment in the military and the lessons taught by this history. Then we describe the process by which the GAT was developed and evaluated. We conclude with a discussion of pending next steps in the development and use of the GAT.

Peterson, C., Park, N., Hall, N., & Seligman, M. E. P. (2009). Zest and work. Journal of Organizational Behavior, 30(2), 161–172. doi:10.1002/job.584. Zest is a positive trait reflecting a person's approach to life with anticipation, energy, and excitement. In the present study, 9803 currently employed adult respondents to an Internet site completed measures of dispositional zest, orientation to work as a calling, and satisfaction with work and life in general. Across all occupations, zest predicted the stance that work was a calling (r = .39), as well as work satisfaction (r = .46) and general life satisfaction (r = .53). Zest deserves further attention from organizational scholars, especially how it can be encouraged in the workplace.

Peterson, C., Ruch, W., Beermann, U., Park, N., & Seligman, M. E. P. (2007). Strengths of character, orientations to happiness, and life satisfaction. The Journal of Positive Psychology, 2(3), 149–156. doi:10.1080/17439760701228938. Why are certain character strengths more associated with life satisfaction than others? A sample of US adults (N = 12,439) completed online surveys in English measuring character strengths, orientations to happiness (engagement, pleasure, and meaning), and life satisfaction, and a sample of Swiss adults (N = 445) completed paper–and–pencil versions of the same surveys in German. In both samples, the character strengths most highly linked to life satisfaction included love, hope, curiosity, and zest. Gratitude was among the most robust predictors of life satisfaction in the US sample, whereas perseverance was among the most robust predictors in the Swiss sample. In both samples, the strengths of character most associated with life satisfaction were associated with orientations to pleasure, to engagement, and to meaning, implying that the most fulfilling character strengths are those that make possible a full life.

Peterson, C., & Seligman, M. E. P. (2004). Character strengths and virtues: A handbook and classification. Oxford, England: Oxford University

Phipps, S. (2011). Positive psychology and war: An oxymoron. The American psychologist, 66(7), 641-2. doi:10.1037/a0024933

Pickren, W. E., & Rutherford, A. (2010). A history of modern psychology in context. Hoboken, NJ: Wiley.

Piliavin, J. A., (2003). Doing well by doing good: Benefits for the benefactor. Flourishing: Positive psychology and the life well–lived. In C. L. M. Keyes, & J. Haidt, (Eds.), Flourishing: Positive psychology and the life well lived (pp. 227–247). Washington DC: American Psychological Association.

Pfaffenberger, A. (2007). Different conceptualizations of optimum development. Journal of Humanistic Psychology, 47(4), 474–496. doi:10.1177/0022167806296858. This article discusses different conceptualizations of optimum development in adulthood. The existential perspective of Rollo May is compared to the self–actualization theory of Abraham Maslow and to transpersonal psychology. The paradigms and value assumptions underlying the different theories of personality are explicated, and social constructionism is used as an organizing frame of reference. The principal argument is that in addition to repeating viewpoints in a philosophical debate about values, we need to substantiate our claims with evidence from the existing research and explore how well–designed empirical studies can help us answer lingering questions of what is desirable and possible in regard to optimal development. The author examines the existing research literature in regard to how the disagreements of the above–named schools of thought could be clarified. Suggestions for future directions in humanistic research are presented.

Pohlmann, K., Gruss, B., & Joraschky, P. (2006). Structural properties of personal meaning systems: A new approach to measuring meaning of life. The Journal of Positive Psychology, 1(3), 109–117. doi:10.1080/17439760600566008. This article introduces a new qualitative–quantitative approach to assess meaning of life. The participants described their sources of meaning and how they were interconnected. Four quantitative measures for (1) the accessibility of meaning–related knowledge, the degree of (2) differentiation and (3) elaboration of personal meaning systems, and (4) their coherence were calculated. The sample consisted of 59 theology and science students. The study tested (a) whether the structural properties of personal meaning systems predicted health and well–being, and (b) reflected different degrees of expertise in constructing meaning. Differentiation, elaboration, and coherence measures correlated with health and well–being and predicted life satisfaction. Theology students presented more differentiated, elaborated, and coherent personal meaning systems than science students. Both results indicate that assessing structural properties of personal meaning systems can be a promising new approach to measure meaning of life.

Positive Psychology: Where The Big Bucks Are. . . (2010). Retrieved June 17, 2011, from http://controversiesinpsychology.wordpress.com/2010/04/29/positive–psychology–where–the–big–bucks–are/

Posner, E. A., & Sunstein, C. R. (2008). Introduction to the conference on law and happiness [Special issue]. The Journal of Legal Studies, 37(S2), S1–S4. doi:10.1086/597059.

Post, S. G. (2005). Altruism, happiness, and health: Itʼs good to be good [Special issue]. International Journal of Behavioral Medicine, 12(2), 66–77. doi:10.1207/s15327558ijbm1202_4. Altruistic (other–regarding) emotions and behaviors are associated with greater well–being, health, and longevity. This article presents a summary and assessment of existing research data on altruism and its relation to mental and physical health. It suggests several complimentary interpretive frameworks, including evolutionary biology, physiological models, and positive psychology. Potential public health implications of this research are discussed, as well as directions for future studies. The article concludes, with some caveats, that a strong correlation exists between the well–being, happiness, health, and longevity of people who are emotionally and behaviorally compassionate, so long as they are not overwhelmed by helping tasks.

Quick, J. C. (2011). Missing: Critical and skeptical perspectives on comprehensive soldier fitness. The American psychologist, 66(7), 645. doi:10.1037/a0024841

Quilliam, S. (2003). Positive thinking. London, England: Dorling Kindersley.

Quoidbach, J., Dunn, E. W., Petrides, K. V., & Mikolajczak, M. (2010). Money giveth, money taketh away: The dual effect of wealth on happiness. Psychological science, 21(6), 759–63. doi:10.1177/0956797610371963. This study provides the first evidence that money impairs people's ability to savor everyday positive emotions and experiences. In a sample of working adults, wealthier individuals reported lower savoring ability (the ability to enhance and prolong positive emotional experience). Moreover, the negative impact of wealth on individuals' ability to savor undermined the positive effects of money on their happiness. We experimentally exposed participants to a reminder of wealth and produced the same deleterious effect on their ability to savor as that produced by actual individual differences in wealth, a result supporting the theory that money has a causal effect on savoring. Moving beyond self–reports, we found that participants exposed to a reminder of wealth spent less time savoring a piece of chocolate and exhibited reduced enjoyment of it compared with participants not exposed to wealth. This article presents evidence supporting the widely held but previously untested belief that having access to the best things in life may actually undercut people's ability to reap enjoyment from life's small pleasures.

Rand, K. L., & Snyder, C. R. (2003). A reply to Dr. Lazarus, the evocator emeritus [Special issue]. Psychological Inquiry, 14, 148–153. doi:10.1207/S15327965PLI1402_03

Rathunde, K. (2001). Toward a psychology of optimal human functioning: What positive psychology can learn from the "experiential turns" of James, Dewey, and Maslow [Special issue]. Journal of Humanistic Psychology, 41(1), 135–153. doi:10.1177/0022167801411008. Past perspectives on optimal functioning and experience are discussed to inform current epistemological debates in humanistic and positive psychology. It is suggested that William James, John Dewey, and Abraham Maslow initiated "experiential turns" in American psychology, or turns toward immediate subjective experience, to explore questions about what makes life fulfilling and meaningful. Furthermore, these turns toward subjectivity were grounded in philosophical initiatives that challenged traditional, positivistic methods in science. The argument presented here is that a deeper appreciation of the benefits and inherent challenges of adopting an experiential perspective may help build a more unified psychology of optimal human functioning and avoid misunderstandings concerning the role of scientific research in humanistic and positive psychology.

Rathunde, K. (2010). Experiential wisdom and optimal experience: Interviews with three distinguished lifelong learners [Special issue]. Journal of Adult Development, 17(2), 81–93. doi:10.1007/s10804–009–9083–x. The present article suggests that lifelong learning is enhanced by the capacity to make experiential course corrections that lead back to states of interest and flow experience. The notion of experiential wisdom is introduced to describe such a capacity for navigation. A person with experiential wisdom recognizes that optimal experiences are more likely to occur when an affectively charged intuitive mode works in synchrony with a deliberative rational mode and is better able to cultivate situations where the interrelation of these two modes is optimized. The first part of the article provides a framework for understanding experiential wisdom and the regulation of optimal experience. The second part illustrates the practice of experiential wisdom by drawing on interviews with three distinguished lifelong learners—poet Mark Strand, social scientist Donald Campbell, and medical researcher Jonas Salk.

Reginster, B. (2004). Happiness as a Faustian bargain. Daedalus, 133(2), 52-59. doi:10.1162/001152604323049398

Reivich, K. J., Seligman, M. E. P., & McBride, S. (2011). Master resilience training in the U.S. Army. The American psychologist, 66(1), 25–34. doi:10.1037/a0021897. The U.S. Army Master Resilience Trainer (MRT) course, which provides face–to–face resilience training, is one of the foundational pillars of the Comprehensive Soldier Fitness program. The 10–day MRT course is the foundation for training resilience skills to sergeants and for teaching sergeants how to teach these skills to their soldiers. The curriculum is based on materials developed by the University of Pennsylvania, the Penn Resilience Program (PRP), and other empirically validated work in the field of positive psychology. This "train the trainer model" is the main vehicle for the dissemination of MRT concepts to the entire force.

Resnick, D. (2001). A meaningful but modest positive psychology. American Psychologist, 56(1), 78–78. doi:10.1037/0003–066X.56.1.78a. Comments on B. Schwartz's (see record 2000–13324–008) discussion of excessive personal freedom, autonomy, self–determination, and life satisfaction and meaning. Schwartz argued that positive psychology must be informed by a normative vision of the components of a good human life, with psychologists taking on the role of society's tutors in achieving that vision. D. Resnick states that Schwartz has overstepped his bounds, appropriating determination of the good life from the fields of philosophy and religion, thereby falling prey to the naturalistic fallacy

Resnick, S., Warmoth, A., & Serlin, I. (2001). The humanistic psychology and positive psychology connection: Implications for psychotherapy [Special issue]. Journal of Humanistic Psychology, 41(1), 73–101. doi:10.1177/0022167801411006. This article explores the common ground between positive and humanistic psychology and responds to positive psychology's challenges to humanistic psychology about research and a concern for social values. It begins with a brief review of the humanistic psychology movement and shows how its many developments in fact constitute a "positive psychology." Next, the article moves into an exploration of the unique research approaches and areas of study dictated by the primacy in humanistic psychology of human experience. The article shows how positive psychology can gain from recognizing the merit of experiential, process–oriented research methodologies. The article concludes by highlighting the ways that the new emphasis on happiness and optimal experience promoted by research psychologists not only affirms humanistic psychology's principles but also serves to reinforce some of the positive directions long practiced by experiential, existential, somatic, and spiritually oriented psychotherapies.

Rich, G. J. (2001). Positive psychology: An introduction [Special issue]. Journal of Humanistic Psychology, 41(1), 8–12. doi:10.1177/0022167801411002.

Rich, G. J. (2003). The positive psychology of youth and adolescence. Journal of Youth and Adolescence, 32(1), 1–3. Springer. Retrieved July 17, 2011, from http://www.springerlink.com/index/g420475342831172.pdf.

Rich, G. J. (2004, Summer). William James and the varieties of optimal states of consciousness. Streams of William James, 6(2), 22-27. Retrieved fromhttp:// williamjamesstudies.org/streams.html

Rich, G. J. (2011). Teaching tools for positive psychology: A comparison of available textbooks. The Journal of Positive Psychology, 6, 492-498. doi:10.1080/17439760.2011.634824

Richards, M., & Huppert, F. (2011). Do positive children become positive adults? Evidence from a longitudinal birth cohort study. The Journal of Positive Psychology, 6(1), 75–87. doi:10.1080/17439760.2011.536655. Little is known about the long–term consequences of positive well–being in childhood in the general population. We analysed data from the British 1946 birth cohort study to test associations between adolescent positive wellbeing and well–being in midlife. Positive and negative behaviours at ages 13 and 15 were rated by school teachers, and personality was assessed when the children were 16 years. Positive childhood behaviour was associated with midlife well–being; specifically a low probability of lifetime emotional problems, satisfaction with work, a high frequency of contact with friends or family and engagement in social activities. Happy children in this cohort were no more likely to marry, but significantly more likely to divorce. These associations were independent of childhood social class, childhood cognition, educational attainment, midlife occupational social class and extraversion. From this longitudinal study, we conclude that childhood well–being predicts positive adult wellbeing, and not merely the absence of mental ill–health.

Richardson, F. C., & Guignon, C. B. (2008). Positive psychology and philosophy of social science [Special issue]. Theory & Psychology, 18(5), 605–627. doi:10.1177/0959354308093398. Many of the shortcomings of 'positive psychology' seem to stem from its unreflectively perpetuating key assumptions of the very mainstream social science it censures for being too 'negative.' Philosophical hermeneutics and related social theory perspectives allow us to identify and critically examine such assumptions, including a one–sided individualism and narrow instrumentalism. Hermeneutics allows us to make sense of the 'disguised ideology' that imbues positive psychology and much modern social science, suggests that social inquiry is best seen as a kind of dialogic understanding, and may allow us to take the measure of deep human limitations without falling into cynicism or despair.

Robbins, B. D. (2008). What is the good life? Positive psychology and the renaissance of humanistic psychology [Special issue]. The Humanistic Psychologist, 36(2), 96–112. doi:10.1080/08873260802110988. Positive and humanistic psychology overlap in thematic content and theoretical presuppositions, yet positive psychology explicitly distances itself as a new movement, despite the fact that its literature implicitly references its extensive historical grounding within humanistic psychology. Consequently, humanistic psychologists both celebrate diffusion of humanistic ideas furthered by positive psychology, and resent its disavowal of the humanistic tradition. The undeniably close alignment of these two schools of thought is demonstrated in the embracing of eudaimonic, in contrast to hedonic, conceptions of happiness by positive psychology. Eudaimonic happiness cannot be purely value–free, nor can it be completely studied without using both nomothetic and idiographic (i.e., quantitative and qualitative) methods in addressing problems of value, which identifies positive psychology clearly as a humanistic approach, despite its protestations.

Robbins, B. D., & Friedman, H. (2008). Introduction to our special issue on positive psychology. [Special issue]. The Humanistic Psychologist, 36(2), 93–95. doi:10.1080/08873260802110947.

Robbins, B. D., & Friedman, H. (2011). Resiliency as a virtue: Contributions from humanistic and positive psychology. In M. J. Celinski, & K. M. Gow (Eds.). Continuity versus creative response to challenge: The primacy of resilience and resourcefulness in life and therapy. Psychology of Emotions, Motivations and Actions. Hauppauge NY: Nova

Robbins, B. D., & Friedman, H. (in press).The negative shadow cast by positive psychology: Contrasting views and implications of humanistic and positive psychology on resiliency. The Humanistic Psychologist. Resiliency is the ability to survive, or even thrive, during adversity. It is a key construct within both humanistic and positive psychology, but each sees it from a contrasting vantage. Positive psychology decontextualizes resilience by judging it as a virtue regardless of circumstance, while humanistic psychology tends to view it in a more holistic way in relationship to other virtues and environmental affordances, clarifying how resiliency can actually be either a virtue or a vice depending upon circumstances. Adolf Hitler is presented as an example of a resilient person who would not be seen as virtuous, while the U.S. Army Comprehensive Soldier Fitness study training warfighters in resiliency illustrates possible ethical problems with a decontextualized view of resiliency.

Roberts, B. W., Walton, K. E., & Bogg, T. (2005). Conscientiousness and health across the life course [Special issue]. Review of General Psychology, 9(2), 156–168. doi:10.1037/1089–2680.9.2.156. This article provides an overview of the role conscientiousness plays in the health process over the life course. The authors describe their research on the underlying structure of conscientiousness and how conscientiousness predicts social environmental factors and health behaviors that have a known relationship to health and longevity. The authors then show that conscientiousness continues to develop in young adulthood, midlife, and even potentially in old age. Finally, they show that the life paths and health behaviors that are associated with health are also associated with changes in conscientiousness across the life course.

Roberts, L. M. (2006). Shifting the lens on organizational life: The added value of positive scholarship. The Academy of Management Review, 31(2), 292–305. Retrieved from http://aomarticles.metapress.com/index/CUYCEM0K56DYAB7U.pdf Fineman raises concerns regarding the implications of positive scholarship for organizational theory and managerial practice. I suggest that illuminating positive states, dynamics, and outcomes enriches theoretical perspectives and invites new directions for empirical research. Gaining a deep understanding of generative mechanisms may ultimately enhance the quality of life for individuals who work within and are affected by work organizations.

Robertson, I. & Cooper, C. (Eds.). (2011). Well-being: Productivity and happiness at work. New York, NY: Palgrave Macmillan.

Rogers, C. R. (1963). The concept of the fully functioning person. Psychotherapy: Theory, Research & Practice, 1(1), 17–26. doi:10.1037/h0088567. Presents a "theoretical model of the person who emerges from therapy—a person functioning freely in all the fullness of his organismic potentialities; a person who is dependable in being realistic, self–enhancing, socialized and appropriate in his behavior; a creative person, whose specific formings of behavior are not easily predictable; a person who is ever–changing, ever developing, always discovering himself and the newness in himself in each succeeding moment of time. This is the person who in an imperfect way actually emerges from the experience of safety and freedom in a therapeutic experience."

Ruark, J. (1999). Redefining the good life: A new focus in the social sciences. Chronicle of Higher Education, 1-10. Retrieved from http://elibrary.ru/item.asp?id=3488467

Ruark, J. (2009). An intellectual movement for the masses. Chronicle of Higher Education, 3 August. Retrieved from http://chronicle.com.ezproxy.lib.ucalgary.ca/article/An–Intellectual–Movement–for/47500/

Rubin, G. (2009). The happiness project: Or, why I spent a year trying to sing in the morning, clean my closets, fight right, read Aristotle, and generally have more fun. New York, NY: HarperCollins.

Ruini, C., & Fava, G. (2012). Role of well-being therapy in achieving a balanced and individualized path to optimal functioning. Clinical psychology & psychotherapy, 19, 291-304. doi:10.1002/cpp.1796 A specific psychotherapeutic strategy for increasing psychological well-being and resilience, well-being therapy (WBT), based on Ryff's conceptual model, has been developed and tested in a number of randomized controlled trials. The findings indicate that flourishing and resilience can be promoted by specific interventions leading to a positive evaluation of one's self, a sense of continued growth and development, the belief that life is purposeful and meaningful, the possession of quality relations with others, the capacity to manage effectively one's life and a sense of self-determination. A decreased vulnerability to depression, mood swings and anxiety has been demonstrated after WBT in high-risk populations. School interventions based on the principles of WBT have been found to yield both promotion of well-being and decrease of distress compared with control groups. The differential technical characteristics and indications of WBT are described, with a special reference to the promotion of an individualized and balanced path to achieve optimal human functioning, avoiding the polarities in positive psychological dimensions. KEY PRACTITIONER MESSAGE: A specific psychotherapeutic strategy, well-being therapy, for modifying the levels of psychological well-being has been developed and tested. In controlled trials, it has yielded significant benefits in clinical populations, particularly as to vulnerability to affective alterations. Well-being therapy may help in achieving flexibility and balance in psychological dimensions that underlie optimal human functioning. Best results are achieved when it is applied to the sub-acute phase of mood and anxiety disorders, in a sequential model. Well-being therapy may have a preventive role in general populations and particularly in children.

Runyan, W. M. K. (1981). Why did Van Gogh cut off his ear? The problem of alternative explanations in psychobiography. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 40(6), 1070-1077. doi:10.1037/0022-3514.40.6.1070 One of the tasks of personality psychology is to explain the behavior of individual human beings. Vincent Van Gogh, for example, cut off the lower half of his left ear and gave it to a prostitute. More than a dozen different explanations of his actions have been proposed. Is one of these explanations true, are all of them true, or, perhaps, are none of them true? And how can we know? This incident is examined in order to explore some of the problems in applying personality theories to the life of a single individual. A sequential procedure for generating and critically evaluating alternative explanatory conjectures is presented a partial, although not a complete, solution to the problem of multiple interpretations.

Runyan, W. M. K. (1998). The changing meanings of holism: From humanist synthesis to Nazi ideology. Contemporary Psychology, 43(6), 389-392. Retrieved from

Russell, D. C. (2005). Plato on pleasure and the good life. New York, NY: Oxford.

Ryan, R. M. (1995). Psychological needs and the facilitation of integrative processes. Journal of Personality, 63(3), 397–427. doi:10.1111/j.1467–6494.1995.tb00501.x. The assumption that there are innate integrative or actualizing tendencies underlying personality and social development is reexamined. Rather than viewing such processes as either nonexistent or as automatic, I argue that they are dynamic and dependent upon social–contextual supports Pertaining to basic human psychological needs. To develop this viewpoint, I conceptually link the notion of integrative tendencies to specific developmental processes, namely intrinsic motivation; internalization; and emotional integration. These processes are then shown to be facilitated by conditions that fulfill psychological needs for autonomy, competence, and relatedness, and forestalled within contexts that frustrate these needs. Interactions between psychological needs and contextual supports account, in part, for the domain and situational specificity of motivation, experience, and relative integration. The meaning of psychological needs (vs. wants) is directly considered, as are the relations between concepts of integration and autonomy and those of independence, individualism, efficacy, and cognitive models of "multiple selves."

Ryan, R. M., & Deci, E. L. (2000). The darker and brighter sides of human existence: Basic psychological needs as a unifying concept. Psychological Inquiry, 11(4), 319–338. doi:10.1207/S15327965PLI1104_03.

Ryan, R. M., & Deci, E. L. (2000). Self–determination theory and the facilitation of intrinsic motivation, social development, and well–being [Special issue]. American psychologist, 55(1), 68–78. doi:10.1037/0003–066X.55.1.68. Human beings can be proactive and engaged or, alternatively, passive and alienated, largely as a function of the social conditions in which they develop and function. Accordingly, research guided by self–determination theory has focused on the social–contextual conditions that facilitate versus forestall the natural processes of self–motivation and healthy psychological development. Specifically, factors have been examined that enhance versus undermine intrinsic motivation, self–regulation, and well–being. The findings have led to the postulate of three innate psychological needs––competence, autonomy, and relatedness––which when satisfied yield enhanced self–motivation and mental health and when thwarted lead to diminished motivation and well–being. Also considered is the significance of these psychological needs and processes within domains such as health care, education, work, sport, religion, and psychotherapy.

Ryan, R. M., & Deci, E. L. (2001). On happiness and human potentials: A review of research on hedonic and eudaimonic well–being. Annual review of psychology, 52, 141–66. doi:10.1146/annurev.psych.52.1.141. Well–being is a complex construct that concerns optimal experience and functioning. Current research on well–being has been derived from two general perspectives: the hedonic approach, which focuses on happiness and defines well–being in terms of pleasure attainment and pain avoidance; and the eudaimonic approach, which focuses on meaning and self–realization and defines well–being in terms of the degree to which a person is fully functioning. These two views have given rise to different research foci and a body of knowledge that is in some areas divergent and in others complementary. New methodological developments concerning multilevel modeling and construct comparisons are also allowing researchers to formulate new questions for the field. This review considers research from both perspectives concerning the nature of well–being, its antecedents, and its stability across time and culture.

Ryan, R. M., & Deci, E. L. (2008). Self–determination theory and the role of basic psychological needs in personality and the organization of behavior. In O. P. John, R. W. Robbins, & L. A. Pervin (Eds.), Handbook of personality: Theory and research (pp. 654–678). New York, NY: The Guilford Press.

Ryback, D. (2011). Humanistic psychology's impact and accomplishments. Journal of Humanistic Psychology. doi:10.1177/0022167811409042. The aim of the article is explore the meaning of self–esteem for individuals with psychotic disorders. To understand how individuals with psychosis experience self–esteem, eight participants (four females and four males) were interviewed using a semistructured open–ended format with scripted questions. Individuals with psychotic disorders maintained a sense of self by pursuing social and interpersonal activities that sustained and enhanced their self–esteem. Neither the positive symptoms nor the negative symptoms commonly associated with psychotic disorders appeared to diminish self–esteem. Also, participants did not describe their sense of self–esteem as being contingent on, or as a direct function of, having a psychotic disorder. For the individuals in this pilot study, self–esteem did not appear to be affected by having a psychotic disorder or by the stigma associated with having been given such a diagnosis. Individuals were able to engage in and maintain social and interpersonal relationships that contributed to their having a positive sense of self–worth. Further study is required to confirm and elaborate on this surprising set of findings.

Ryff, C. D. (1989). Happiness is everything, or is it? Explorations on the meaning of psychological well–being. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 57(6), 1069–1081. doi:10.1037//0022–3514.57.6.1069. Reigning measures of psychological well–being have little theoretical grounding, despite an extensive literature on the contours of positive functioning. Aspects of well–being derived from this literature (i.e., self–acceptance, positive relations with others, autonomy, environmental mastery, purpose in life, and personal growth) were operationalized. Three hundred and twenty–one men and women, divided among young, middle–aged, and older adults, rated themselves on these measures along with six instruments prominent in earlier studies (i.e., affect balance, life satisfaction, self–esteem, morale, locus of control, depression). Results revealed that positive relations with others, autonomy, purpose in life, and personal growth were not strongly tied to prior assessment indexes, thereby supporting the claim that key aspects of positive functioning have not been represented in the empirical arena. Furthermore, age profiles revealed a more differentiated pattern of well–being than is evident in prior research.

Ryff, C. D. (2003). Corners of myopia in the positive psychology parade. Psychological Inquiry, 14(2), 153–159. doi:10.1207/S15327965PLI1402_03

Ryff, C. D., & Keyes, C. L. (1995). The structure of psychological well–being revisited. Journal of personality and social psychology, 69(4), 719–27. Retrieved from http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/7473027. A theoretical model of psychological well–being that encompasses 6 distinct dimensions of wellness (Autonomy, Environmental Mastery, Personal Growth, Positive Relations with Others, Purpose in Life, Self–Acceptance) was tested with data from a nationally representative sample of adults (N = 1,108), aged 25 and older, who participated in telephone interviews. Confirmatory factor analyses provided support for the proposed 6–factor model, with a single second–order super factor. The model was superior in fit over single–factor and other artifactual models. Age and sex differences on the various well–being dimensions replicated prior findings. Comparisons with other frequently used indicators (positive and negative affect, life satisfaction) demonstrated that the latter neglect key aspects of positive functioning emphasized in theories of health and well–being.

Ryff, C. D., & Singer, B. (1998). The contours of positive human health. Psychological Inquiry, 9(1), 1–28. doi:10.1207/s15327965pli0901_1 The primary objectives of this article are (a) to put forth an explicit operational formulation of positive human health that goes beyond prevailing "absence of illness" criteria; (b) to clarify that positive human health does not derive from extant medical considerations, which are not about wellness, but necessarily require a base in philosophical accounts of the "goods" in life; (c) to provoke a change of emphasis from strong tendencies to construe human health as exclusively about the mind or the body toward an integrated and positive spiral of mind–body influences; (d) to delineate possible physiological substrates of human flourishing and offer future directions for understanding the biology of positive health; and (e) to discuss implications of positive health for diverse scientific agendas (e.g., stress, class and health, work and family life) and for practice in health fields (e.g., training, health examinations, psychotherapy, and wellness intervention programs).

Ryff, C. D., & Singer, B. H. (2002). Ironies of the human condition: Well–being and health on the way to mortality (pp. 271–287). In L. G. Aspinwall & U. M. Staudinger (Eds.), A psychology of human strengths: Perspectives on an emerging field. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.

Ryff, C. D., & Singer, B. H. (2003). Flourishing under fire: Resilience as a prototype of challenged thriving. Flourishing: Positive psychology and the life well–lived. In C. L. M. Keyes, & J. Haidt, (Eds.), Flourishing: Positive psychology and the life well lived (pp. 15–36). Washington DC: American Psychological Association.

Salinas–Jiménez, M. D. M., Artés, J., & Salinas–Jiménez, J. (2010). Education as a positional good: A life satisfaction approach. Social Indicators Research, 103(3), 409–426. doi:10.1007/s11205–010–9709–1 In this paper we empirically investigate the direct effects of education on utility. Besides investment aspects of education, the focus is placed on its consumption component and on education positional concerns. We use data from the World Values Survey (WVS) and adopt a life satisfaction approach. First, we find that education shows a significant effect on life satisfaction independent of its effect on income, thus identifying a consumption component of education. Furthermore, given that the contribution of education to individual wellbeing might depend partly on relative position rather than absolute levels, we next study whether education can be considered as a positional good. To this end we analyse the relationship between education and life satisfaction for people in different income groups in which the reference levels of education may differ. Additionally, we control for occupational status since benefits from education could appear via occupational benefits. Our results indicate that the contribution of education to subjective wellbeing is stronger as less people attain a given level of education, thus suggesting that this contribution is partly due to positional concerns.

Salovey, P., Rothman, J., Detweiler, J. B., & Steward, W. T. (2000). Emotional states and physical health [Special issue]. American psychologist, 55(1), 110–21. doi:10.1037/0003–066X.55.1.110. Positive emotional states may promote healthy perceptions, beliefs, and physical well–being itself. To explore potential mechanisms linking pleasant feelings and good health, the authors consider several lines of research, including (a) direct effects of positive affect on physiology, especially the immune system, (b) the information value of emotional experiences, (c) the psychological resources engendered by positive feeling states, (d) the ways in which mood can motivate health–relevant behaviors, and (e) the elicitation of social support. As anticipated by the Greek physician Hippocrates, positive emotions and healthy outcomes may be linked through multiple pathways.

Sarracino, F. (2011). Money, sociability and happiness: Are developed countries doomed to social erosion and unhappiness? Social Indicators Research. doi:10.1007/s11205–011–9898–2 Discovering whether social capital endowments in modern societies have been subjected or not to a process of gradual erosion is one of the most debated topics in recent economic literature. Inaugurated by Putnam's pioneering studies, the debate on social capital trends has been recently revived by Stevenson and Wolfers (2008) contending Easterlin's assessment. Present work is aimed at finding evidence for the relationship between changes in social capital and subjective well–being in western Europe, Australia, Canada and Japan between 1980 and 2005. In particular, I would like to answer questions such as: (1) is social capital in western Europe, Canada, Australia and Japan declining? Is such erosion a general trend of modern and richer societies or is it a characteristic feature of the American one? (2) can social capital trend help explain subjective well–being trend? Therefore, present research considers three different set of proxies of social capital controlling for time and socio–demographic aspects using WVS–EVS data between 1980 and 2005. Present results are encouraging, showing evidence of positive correlation between several proxies of social capital and both happiness and life satisfaction. Furthermore, results show that during last twenty–five years people in some of the most modern and developed countries have persistently lost confidence in the judicial system, religious institutions, parliament and civil service.

Schlegel, R. J., Hicks, J. A., Arndt, J., & King, L. A. (2009). Thine own self: True self–concept accessibility and meaning in life. Journal of personality and social psychology, 96(2), 473–90. doi:10.1037/a0014060. A number of philosophical and psychological theories suggest the true self is an important contributor to well–being. The present research examined whether the cognitive accessibility of the true self–concept would predict the experience of meaning in life. To ensure that any observed effects were due to the true self–concept rather than to the self–concept more generally, the authors used actual self–concept accessibility as a control variable in all studies. True and actual self–concepts were defined as including those traits that are enacted around close others vs. most others (Studies 1 through 3) or as traits that refer to "who you really are" vs. "who you are during most of your activities" (Studies 4 and 5), respectively. Studies 1, 2, and 4 showed that individual differences in true self–concept accessibility, but not differences in actual self–concept accessibility, predicted meaning in life. Studies 3 and 5 showed that priming traits related to the true self–concept enhanced perceptions of meaning in life. Implications for the study of the true self–concept and authenticity are discussed.

Schlegel, R. J., Hicks, J. A., King, L. A., & Arndt, J. (2011). Feeling like you know who you are: perceived true self–knowledge and meaning in life. Personality & social psychology bulletin, 37(6), 745–56. doi:10.1177/0146167211400424. The essence of who a person really is has been labeled the "true self," and an emerging area of research suggests that this self–concept plays an important role in the creation of a fulfilling existence. Three studies investigate the role of the subjective feeling that one possesses knowledge of one's true self in meaning in life judgments. Consistently, the perception of availability of true self–knowledge (operationalized as the metacognitive experience of ease in describing one's true self) predicted meaning in life judgments over and above other potentially related constructs such as mood and self–esteem. Conversely, the subjective availability of knowledge of how one actually behaves (i.e., one's actual self) was unrelated to meaning in life judgments. Implications and directions for future research are discussed.

Schmid, K. L., Phelps, E., Kiely, M. K., Napolitano, C. M., Boyd, M. J., & Lerner, R. M. (2011). The role of adolescents' hopeful futures in predicting positive and negative developmental trajectories: Findings from the 4–H Study of Positive Youth Development. The Journal of Positive Psychology, 6(1), 45–56. doi:10.1080/17439760.2010.536777. Hope for one's future and intentional self–regulation skills may be important in the development of positive and problematic outcomes across adolescence. Using data from 1273 participants from Grades 7 to 9 of the 4–H Study of Positive Youth Development (PYD), we assessed the role of a hopeful future in predicting developmental outcomes, measured by trajectories of PYD, contribution (e.g., thinking about and acting on social justice behaviors), risk behaviors, and depressive symptoms. A measure of intentional self–regulation, which involves selecting goals (S), optimizing resources to achieve goals (O), and compensating when original goals are blocked (C), was also used to predict outcomes. Higher levels of both hopeful future and selection, optimization, and compensation (SOC) significantly predicted membership in the most favorable trajectories, controlling for sex and socioeconomic status (SES). Hopeful future was a stronger predictor than SOC for each of the outcomes assessed. Implications for future research about individual–context relational processes involved in PYD are discussed.

Schmidt, J. A., & Padilla, B. (2003). Self–esteem and family challenge: An investigation of their effects on achievement. Journal of youth and adolescence, 32(1), 37–46. Springer. Retrieved July 17, 2011, from http://www.springerlink.com/index/p7q5017445443344.pdf. This study uses longitudinal data on a sample of 10th graders to investigate the associations between self–esteem, family challenge, and 2 indicators of adolescent achievement: high school grades and extracurricular involvement. Research on self–esteem and on family challenge has linked both of these factors to achievement in adolescents, but studies have not simultaneously examined the effects of these factors on achievement. The present study finds that family challenge and self–esteem are correlated with one another, and examines the effects of each of these factors on achievement while controlling on the other factor. Controlling on self–esteem, family challenge was positively associated with grades in school, and was marginally associated with extracurricular participation. Controlling on family challenge, we did not find self–esteem to be predictive of grades or extracurricular involvement in longitudinal analyses, but we did find some evidence for a relationship in the opposite direction, with grades in 10th grade predicting self–esteem in 12th grade. Results also suggest differences in academic achievement and extracurricular participation by race/ethnicity. Implications of these findings for the role of family challenge and self–esteem in the positive development of adolescents are discussed.

Schmuck, P., & Sheldon, K. M. (Eds.). (2001). Life goals and well–being: Towards a positive psychology of human striving. Seattle, WA: Hogrefe & Huber.

Schneider, K. (2011). Toward a humanistic positive psychology why can't we just get along? Existential Analysis, 22(1), 32–38. Retrieved from EBSCOhost. I propose that despite the nay–saying 1) positive psychology is justifiably a branch of humanistic psychology, and 2) a humanistic positive psychology would be salutary to the profession of psychology. From the standpoint of theory, I show how positive psychology shares humanistic psychology's concern with what it means to be fully, experientially human, and how that understanding illuminates the vital or fulfilled life. However, I also show how the findings of positive psychology, particularly in the area "happiness" research – or what has recently been termed "human flourishing," stop short of the fuller aforementioned aims. Specifically, I show how positive psychology appears to oversimplify both the experience of human flourishing and its social–adaptive value. While the positive psychology findings on flourishing are useful in limited contexts, e.g., in terms of their implications for the attainment of pleasure, physical health, and cultural competency, they are inadequate with respect to the more complicated contexts of creativity, emotional depth, and social consciousness. I will detail the nature of these discrepancies, such as their implications for perception of reality, psychological growth, and capacity for self–reflection, and consider their role in an expanded vision of human resiliency.

Schneider, S. L. (2001). In search of realistic optimism: meaning, knowledge, and warm fuzziness [Special issue]. American Psychologist, 56(3), 250–263. doi:10.1037/0003–066X.56.3.250 Is it better to be realistic or optimistic? A realistic outlook improves chances to negotiate the environment successfully, whereas an optimistic outlook places priority on feeling good. But are realistic and optimistic outlooks necessarily in conflict? The author suggests that the fuzzy nature of accuracy typically places only loose boundaries on what it means to be realistic. As a result, there are many forms of optimism that do not, in principle, yield unrealistic assessments. Nevertheless, there remain numerous "optimistic biases" that do involve self–deception, or convincing oneself of desired beliefs without appropriate reality checks. The author describes several ways that realistic and unrealistic optimism can be differentiated and explores the impact of this distinction for current views of optimism. This critique reveals how positive psychology may benefit from a focus on personal meaning and knowledge as they relate to making the most of life.

Schueller, S. (2010). Preferences for positive psychology exercises. The Journal of Positive Psychology, 5(3), 192–203. doi:10.1080/17439761003790948. Positive psychologists have developed a variety of techniques to increase well–being. This study explored whether preferences for some interventions are linked to preferences for other interventions. A total of 792 participants received up to six positive psychology exercises. After each exercise, participants indicated their preference for each exercise and how often they engaged in it. A factor analysis of these scores revealed three groupings of subjective preferences: active–constructive responding and savoring; blessings and life summary; and gratitude visit and strengths. Individuals who had high preference for an exercise were more likely to complete the exercise. Implications for application of positive psychology exercises and future recommendations are discussed including the use of such a framework for tailoring custom programs of interventions.

Schumaker, J. F. (2006). The happiness conspiracy. New Internationalist, July, Issue 391. Retrieved on July 1 from http://www.newint.org/columns/essays/2006/07/01/happiness–conspiracy/ The trouble with normal is it always gets worse,' sang the Canadian guitarist Bruce Cockburn back in 1983. Seems he was on to something. Normal doesn't seem to be working any longer. The new Holy Grail is happiness. At every turn are 'how–to' happiness books, articles, TV and radio programmes, videos and websites. There are happiness institutes, camps, clubs, classes, cruises, workshops, and retreats. Universities are adding courses in Happiness Studies. Fast–growing professions include happiness counselling, happiness coaching, 'life–lift' coaching, 'joyology' and happiness science. Personal happiness is big business and everyone is selling it. Being positive is mandatory, even with the planet in meltdown. Cynics and pessimists are running for cover while the cheerleaders are policing the game with an iron fist. Only the bravest are not being bullied into cheering up or at least shutting up.

Schumaker, J. F. (2007). In search of happiness: Understanding an endangered state of mind. Westport, CT: Praeger

Schwartz, B. (2000). Self–determination: The tyranny of freedom [Special issue]. American Psychologist, 55(1), 79–88. doi:10.1037//0003–066X.55.1.79. Americans now live in a time and a place in which freedom and autonomy are valued above all else and in which expanded opportunities for self–determination are regarded as a sign of the psychological well–being of individuals and the moral well–being of the culture. This article argues that freedom, autonomy, and self–determination can become excessive, and that when that happens, freedom can be experienced as a kind of tyranny. The article further argues that unduly influenced by the ideology of economics and rational–choice theory, modern American society has created an excess of freedom, with resulting increases in people's dissatisfaction with their lives and in clinical depression. One significant task for a future psychology of optimal functioning is to deemphasize individual freedom and to determine which cultural constraints are necessary for people to live meaningful and satisfying lives.

Schwartz, B., & Sharpe, K. E. (2006). Practical wisdom: Aristotle meets positive psychology. Journal of Happiness Studies, 7(3), 377–395. doi:10.1007/s10902–005–3651–y. The strengths and virtues identified by positive psychology are treated as logically independent, and it is recommended that people identify their "signature" strengths and cultivate them, because more of a strength is better [Peterson and Seligman: 2004, Character Strengths and Virtues: A Handbook and Classification (Oxford University, New York, NY); Seligman: 2002, Authentic Happiness (Free Press, New York, NY)]. The present paper contrasts that view with the Aristotelian view that virtues are interdependent, that happiness (eudaimonia) requires all the virtues, and that more of a virtue is not always better than less. We argue that practical wisdom is the master virtue essential to solving problems of specificity, relevance, and conflict that inevitably arise whenever character strengths must be translated into action in concrete situations. We also argue that practical wisdom is becoming increasingly difficult to nurture and display in modern society, so that attention must be paid to reshaping social institutions to encourage the use of practical wisdom rather than inhibiting it.

Schwartz, B., Ward, A., Monterosso, J., Lyubomirsky, S., White, K., & Lehman, D. R. (2002). Maximizing versus satisficing: Happiness is a matter of choice. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 83(5), 1178. doi:10.1037//0022–3514.83.5.1178. Can people feel worse off as the options they face increase? The present studies suggest that some people–maximizers–can. Study 1 reported a Maximization Scale, which measures individual differences in desire to maximize. Seven samples revealed negative correlations between maximization and happiness, optimism, self–esteem, and life satisfaction, and positive correlations between maximization and depression, perfectionism, and regret. Study 2 found maximizers less satisfied than nonmaximizers (satisficers) with consumer decisions, and more likely to engage in social comparison. Study 3 found maximizers more adversely affected by upward social comparison. Study 4 found maximizers more sensitive to regret and less satisfied in an ultimatum bargaining game. The interaction between maximizing and choice is discussed in terms of regret, adaptation, and self–blame.

Secker, J. (1998). Current conceptualizations of mental health and mental health promotion. Health Education Research, 13(1), 57–66. doi:10.1093/her/13.1.57. Health promotion is generally agreed to be underpinned by a set of principles which distinguish it from other disciplines and professions. This paper takes these principles as the starting point for a review of the literature of mental health promotion. The aim is to clarify the ways in which mental health and mental health promotion are currently conceptualized, in order to identify areas where health promotion can make a unique contribution to complement that of other interest groups. In the first section, it is suggested that current definitions of mental health are inadequate for health promotion practice in that they either equate health with the absence of illness or present a culturally skewed, individualized and 'expert'–led version of what it means to be mentally healthy. The second section then traces the implications of these definitions as they emerge from the literature relating to mental health promotion practice. The paper concludes with a discussion of some ways in which health promotion specialists might begin to develop a mental health promotion agenda which is more consistent with health promotion principles.

Seligman, M. E. P. (1975). Helplessness: On depression, development, and death. San Francisco, CA: W. H. Freeman.

Seligman, M. E. P. (1991). Learned optimism. New York, NY: Knopf.

Seligman, M. E. P. (1994). What you can change and what you can't. New York, NY: Knopf.

Seligman, M. E. P. (1996). The optimistic child: Proven program to safeguard children from depression & build lifelong resilience. New York, NY: Houghton Mifflin.

Seligman, M. E. P. (1998a). Building human strength: Psychology's forgotten mission. APA monitor, 29(1), 1. Retrieved from http://pbi.sagepub.com/content/1/3/181.short

Seligman, M. E. P. (1998b). Positive social science. APA monitor, 29(4), 1. Retrieved from http://pbi.sagepub.com/content/1/3/181.short

Seligman, M. (1998c). President's column: What is the "good life"? APA Monitor, 29(10), 1. Retrieved July 11, 2011, from http://scholar.google.com/scholar?hl=en&btnG=Search&q=intitle:President's+column:+What+is+the+"good+life"?#0.

Seligman, M. E. P. (1999). The president's address. American Psychologist, 54, 559-562.

Seligman, M. E. P. (2002a). Authentic Happiness: Using the New Positive Psychology to Realize Your Potential for Lasting Fulfillment. New York, NY: Free Press/Simon and Schuster. See note 1 at end

Seligman, M. E. P. (2002b). Positive psychology, positive prevention, and positive therapy. In C. R. Snyder & S. J. Lopez (Eds.), Handbook of positive psychology (pp. 3–9). New York, NY: Oxford University.

Seligman, M. E. P. (2003). Foreword: The past and future of positive psychology. In C. L. M. Keyes, & J. Haidt, (Eds.), Flourishing: Positive psychology and the life well lived (pp. xi–xx). Washington DC: American Psychological Association.

Seligman, M. E. P. (2004a). Can happiness be taught? Daedalus, 133(2), 80-87. doi:10.1162/001152604323049424

Seligman, M. E. P. (2004b, Summer). Positive psychology and philosophy. Streams of William James, 6(2), 2-3. Retrieved fromhttp:// williamjamesstudies.org/streams.html

Seligman, M. E. P. (2007). Coaching and positive psychology. Australian Psychologist, 42(4), 266–267. doi:///10.1080/00050060701648233. Coaching is a practice without limits on its scope, lacking theoretical foundations and meaningful accreditation, one that has yet to develop a significant empirical base. The discipline of positive psychology can provide coaching with an evidence–based framework and a defined scope of practice. Further, positive psychology can provide a range of valid measures, evidence–based interventions and a reference point from which to develop meaningful training and accreditation processes that will help set the boundaries of responsible coaching practice.

Seligman, M. E. P. (2008). Positive health. Applied Psychology, 57(s1), 3–18. doi:10.1111/j.1464–0597.2008.00351.x. I propose a new field: positive health. Positive health describes a state beyond the mere absence of disease and is definable and measurable. Positive health can be operationalised by a combination of excellent status on biological, subjective, and functional measures. By mining existing longitudinal studies, we can test the hypothesis that positive health predicts increased longevity (correcting for quality of life), decreased health costs, better mental health in aging, and better prognosis when illness strikes. Those aspects of positive health which specifically predict these outcomes then become targets for new interventions and refinements of protocol. I propose that the field of positive health has direct parallels to the field of positive psychology, parallels that suggest that a focus on health rather than illness will be cost saving and life saving. Finally, I suggest a different mode of science, the Copenhagen–Medici model, used to found positive psychology, as an appropriate way of beginning the flagship explorations for positive health.

Seligman, M. E. P. (2011). Flourish: A visionary new understanding of happiness and well–being. New York, NY: Free Press. In a fascinating evolution of thought and practice, Flourish refines what Positive Psychology is all about. While certainly a part of well–being, happiness alone doesn't give life meaning. Seligman now asks, What is it that enables you to cultivate your talents, to build deep, lasting relationships with others, to feel pleasure, and to contribute meaningfully to the world? In a word, what is it that allows you to flourish? "Well–being" takes the stage front and center, and Happiness (or Positive Emotion) becomes one of the five pillars of Positive Psychology, along with Engagement, Relationships, Meaning, and Accomplishment—or PERMA, the permanent building blocks for a life of profound fulfillment.

Seligman, M. E. P. (2011). Helping American soldiers in time of war: Reply to comments on the comprehensive soldier fitness special issue. The American psychologist, 66(7), 646-7. doi:10.1037/a0025156

Seligman, M. E. P., & Csikszentmihalyi, M. (2000). Positive psychology: An introduction. American Psychologist, 55(1), 5–14. doi:10.1037/0003–066X.55.1.5. A science of positive subjective experience, positive individual traits, and positive institutions promises to improve quality of life and prevent the pathologies that arise when life is barren and meaningless. The exclusive focus on pathology that has dominated so much of our discipline results in a model of the human being lacking the positive features that make life worth living. Hope, wisdom, creativity, future mindedness, courage, spirituality, responsibility, and perseverance are ignored or explained as transformations of more authentic negative impulses. The 15 articles in this millennial issue of the American Psychologist discuss such issues as what enables happiness, the effects of autonomy and self–regulation, how optimism and hope affect health, what constitutes wisdom, and how talent and creativity come to fruition. The authors outline a framework for a science of positive psychology, point to gaps in our knowledge, and predict that the next century will see a science and profession that will come to understand and build the factors that allow individuals, communities, and societies to flourish.

Seligman, M. E. P., & Csikszentmihalyi, M. (2001). "Positive psychology: An introduction": Reply. American Psychologist, 56(1), 89–90. doi:10.1037//0003–066X.56.1.89. Responds to comments by A. C. Bohart and T Greening, S. B. Shapiro, G. Bacigalupe, R. Walsh, W. C. Compton, C. L. McLafferty and J. D. Kirylo, N. Abi–Hashem, A. C. Catania, G. K. Lampropoulos, and T. M. Kelley (see records 2002–15384–010, 2002–15384–011, 2002–15384–012, 2002–15384–013, 2002–15384–014, 2002–15384–015, 2002–15384–016, 2002–15384–017, 2002–15384–018, and 2002–15384–019, respectively) on the January 2000, Vol 55(1) special issue of the American Psychologist dedicated to positive psychology. M. E. P. Seligman and M. Csikszentmihalyi expand on some of the critical themes discussed in the commentaries.

Seligman, M., Ernst, R., Gillham, J., Reivich, K., & Linkins, M. (2009). Positive education: positive psychology and classroom interventions. Oxford Review of Education, 35(3), 293–311. doi:10.1080/03054980902934563. Positive education is defined as education for both traditional skills and for happiness. The high prevalence worldwide of depression among young people, the small rise in life satisfaction, and the synergy between learning and positive emotion all argue that the skills for happiness should be taught in school. There is substantial evidence from well controlled studies that skills that increase resilience, positive emotion, engagement and meaning can be taught to schoolchildren. We present the story of teaching these skills to an entire school—Geelong Grammar School—in Australia, and we speculate that positive education will form the basis of a 'new prosperity', a politics that values both wealth and well‐being.

Seligman, M. E. P., & Fowler, R. D. (2011). Comprehensive Soldier Fitness and the future of psychology. The American psychologist, 66(1), 82–6. doi:10.1037/a0021898. Psychology responded to the national needs in World War I and World War II and was itself transformed. National need calls a third time: unprecedented levels of posttraumatic stress disorder, depression, suicide, and anxiety along with a need for a resilient Army capable of meeting the persistent warfare of the foreseeable future. As a large part of the Comprehensive Soldier Fitness program, positive psychology is meeting this need with new tests, with new fitness courses, and with resilience training. These developments may transform the practice of psychology and psychology's relation to medicine and education.

Seligman, M. P., Linley, P., Joseph, S., & Boniwell, I. (2003). Positive psychology fundamental assumptions. Psychologist, 16(3), 126. Retrieved from EBSCOhost.

Seligman, M. E. P., & Pawelski, J. O. (2003). Positive psychology: FAQs. Psychological Inquiry 14(2), 110–172. doi:10.1207/S15327965PLI1402_03

Seligman, M. E. P., Parks, A. C., & Steen, T. A. (2004). A balanced psychology and a full life. Philosophical transactions of the Royal Society of London. Series B, Biological sciences, 359(1449), 1379–81. doi:10.1098/rstb.2004.1513. Psychology since World War II has been largely devoted to repairing weakness and understanding suffering. Towards that end, we have made considerable gains. We have a classification of mental illness that allows international collaboration, and through this collaboration we have developed effective psychotherapeutic or pharmacological treatments for 14 major mental disorders. However, while building a strong science and practice of treating mental illness, we largely forgot about everyday well–being. Is the absence of mental illness and suffering sufficient to let individuals and communities flourish? Were all disabling conditions to disappear, what would make life worth living? Those committed to a science of positive psychology can draw on the effective research methods developed to understand and treat mental illness. Results from a new randomized, placebo–controlled study demonstrate that people are happier and less depressed three months after completing exercises targeting positive emotion. The ultimate goal of positive psychology is to make people happier by understanding and building positive emotion, gratification and meaning. Towards this end, we must supplement what we know about treating illness and repairing damage with knowledge about nurturing well–being in individuals and communities.

Seligman, M. E. P., & Peterson, C. (2003). Positive clinical psychology. In L. G. Aspinwall & U. M. Staudinger (Eds.), A psychology of human strengths: Perspectives on an emerging field (pp. 305–317). Washington, DC: American Psychological Association. doi: 10.1037/10566–021. This review argues for the development of a Positive Clinical Psychology, which has an integrated and equally weighted focus on both positive and negative functioning in all areas of research and practice. Positive characteristics (such as gratitude, flexibility, and positive emotions) can uniquely predict disorder beyond the predictive power of the presence of negative characteristics, and buffer the impact of negative life events, potentially preventing the development of disorder. Increased study of these characteristics can rapidly expand the knowledge base of clinical psychology and utilize the promising new interventions to treat disorder through promoting the positive. Further, positive and negative characteristics cannot logically be studied or changed in isolation as (a) they interact to predict clinical outcomes, (b) characteristics are neither "positive" or "negative", with outcomes depending on specific situation and concomitant goals and motivations, and (c) positive and negative well–being often exist on the same continuum. Responding to criticisms of the Positive Psychology movement, we do not suggest the study of positive functioning as a separate field of clinical psychology, but rather that clinical psychology itself changes to become a more integrative discipline. An agenda for research and practice is proposed including reconceptualizing well–being, forming stronger collaborations with allied disciplines, rigorously evaluating the new positive interventions, and considering a role for clinical psychologists in promoting well–being as well as treating distress.

Seligman, M. E. P., Rashid, T., & Parks, A. C. (2006). Positive psychotherapy. American psychologist, 61(8), 774–88. doi:10.1037/0003–066X.61.8.774. Positive psychotherapy (PPT) contrasts with standard interventions for depression by increasing positive emotion, engagement, and meaning rather than directly targeting depressive symptoms. The authors have tested the effects of these interventions in a variety of settings. In informal student and clinical settings, people not uncommonly reported them to be "life–changing." Delivered on the Web, positive psychology exercises relieved depressive symptoms for at least 6 months compared with placebo interventions, the effects of which lasted less than a week. In severe depression, the effects of these Web exercises were particularly striking. This address reports two preliminary studies: In the first, PPT delivered to groups significantly decreased levels of mild–to–moderate depression through 1–year follow–up. In the second, PPT delivered to individuals produced higher remission rates than did treatment as usual and treatment as usual plus medication among outpatients with major depressive disorder. Together, these studies suggest that treatments for depression may usefully be supplemented by exercises that explicitly increase positive emotion, engagement, and meaning.

Seligman, M. E. P., Steen, T. A., Park, N., & Peterson, C. (2005). Positive psychology progress: Empirical validation of interventions. American psychologist, 60(5), 410–21. doi:10.1037/0003–066X.60.5.410. Positive psychology has flourished in the last 5 years. The authors review recent developments in the field, including books, meetings, courses, and conferences. They also discuss the newly created classification of character strengths and virtues, a positive complement to the various editions of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (e. g., American Psychiatric Association, 1994), and present some cross–cultural findings that suggest a surprising ubiquity of strengths and virtues. Finally, the authors focus on psychological interventions that increase individual happiness. In a 6–group, random–assignment, placebo–controlled Internet study, the authors tested 5 purported happiness interventions and 1 plausible control exercise. They found that 3 of the interventions lastingly increased happiness and decreased depressive symptoms. Positive interventions can supplement traditional interventions that relieve suffering and may someday be the practical legacy of positive psychology.

Sergeant, S., & Mongrain, M. (2011). Are positive psychology exercises helpful for people with depressive personality styles? The Journal of Positive Psychology, 6, 260-272. doi:10.1080/17439760.2011.577089 Two exercises involving gratitude and uplifting music were tested for their ability to improve well-being in selfcritical and needy individuals. In this study, 772 adults completed measures of depressive symptoms, physical symptoms, happiness, and self-esteem and then practiced the gratitude, music, or control exercise (recalling early childhood memories) for 1 week. Follow-up measures were administered after the intervention period, and 1, 3, and 6 months later. Participants in both the gratitude and the music condition reported greater increases in happiness over time than participants in the control condition. Self-critics were particularly responsive to the gratitude intervention, whereas needy individuals found the exercises ineffective and even detrimental to their self-esteem. These results highlight the importance of identifying individual differences in response to positive psychology exercises.

Serlin, I. (2011). The history and future of humanistic psychology. Journal of Humanistic Psychology. doi:10.1177/0022167811412600. Since much of humanistic psychology's agenda has been taken up by mainstream psychology and culture, the question of whether humanistic psychology is relevant today is critical. This article draws on Maslow's description of "sickness of the soul" to argue that a psychology that stresses connection and embodied experience, meaning and ethics, creativity and dreams, resilience and self–actualization is needed now more than ever.

Shapiro, S. (2001). Illogical positivism. American Psychologist, 56(1), 82. doi:10.1037/0003–066X.56.1.82a

Sheldon, K. M. (2004). Optimal human being: An integrated multi–level perspective. Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum.

Sheldon, K. M. (2011). Consilience within the biopsychosocial system. Psychological Inquiry, 22(1), 52-65. doi:10.1080/1047840X.2011.551105

Sheldon, K. M. (2011). What's positive about positive psychology? In K. M. Sheldon, T. B. Kashdan, & M. F. Steger, (Eds.), Designing positive psychology: Taking stock and moving forward (pp. 421-429). doi:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195373585.003.0028

Sheldon, K. M., Cheng, C., & Hilpert, J. (2011). Understanding well-being and optimal functioning: Applying the Multilevel Personality in Context (MPIC) model. Psychological Inquiry, 22(1), 1-16. doi:10.1080/1047840X.2011.532477 In this article we first describe a broad multilevel framework representing the determinants of human behavior and consider its advantages. Expanding on the upper part of this framework, we then propose the Multilevel Personality in Context (MPIC) model, showing how it integrates and extends past theorizing on the hierarchical organization of personality. The model builds upon McAdams's three-tier (traits, goals, and selves) conception of personality, adding a foundational level (psychological needs) beneath individual differences and incorporating social relations and cultural factors as higher level influences upon behavior and individual differences. New data (N = 3,665 in 21 cultures) are briefly presented showing that culture, self, motive, and trait variables each have independent effects upon subjective well-being (SWB) and showing that psychological need satisfaction (at the foundational level) mediates these effects as predicted. Consistent with McAdams and Pals's (2006) "fifth principle" of personality, culture had top-down effects upon self-level variables and moderated several of the relations to SWB. We conclude by suggesting some general heuristics for designing studies using the MPIC approach.

Sheldon, K., Fredrickson, B., Rathunde, K., Csikszentmihalyi, M. & Haidt, J. (2000). Positive Psychology Manifesto. Retrieved from www.positivepsychology.org/akumalmanifesto.htm. [Akumal Manifesto. This manifesto was originally created during the Akumal 1 meeting in January 1999, and was revised following the Akumal 2 meeting in January 2000.]

Sheldon, K. M., & Gunz, A. (2009). Psychological needs as basic motives, not just experiential requirements. Journal of personality, 77(5), 1467-92. doi:10.1111/j.1467-6494.2009.00589.x Self-determination theory (SDT) posits 3 evolved psychological needs, for autonomy, competence, and relatedness. Considerable research has established that all 3 experiences are important for well-being. However, no SDT research has examined whether unmet needs have motivational force, an important criterion for establishing that certain experiences are indeed basic needs and motives (R. F. Baumeister & M. R. Leary, 1995). Three studies, using cross-sectional, experimental, and longitudinal methodologies, supply evidence that felt deficits in autonomy, competence, and relatedness arouse corresponding desires to acquire the missing experiences. However, a positive surfeit of felt-need satisfaction did not predict reduced desires for the corresponding needs. Implications for homeostatic, evolutionary, and humanistic perspectives upon basic psychological needs are discussed.

Sheldon, K. M., & Hoon, T. H. (2007). The multiple determination of well-being: Independent effects of positive traits, needs, goals, selves, social supports, and cultural contexts. Journal of Happiness Studies, 8(4), 565-592. doi:10.1007/s10902-006-9031-4 Although most researchers acknowledge that subjective well-being (SWB) is multiply determined, little research and theory simultaneously considers the effects of many types of determinants, located at many different levels of analysis. Guided by a six-level model of "optimal human being" (Sheldon, 2004, Optimal Human Being: An Integrated Multi-level Perspective Erlbaum, Mahwah, N.J.), we tested the hypothesis that psychological need-satisfaction, a positive Big Five trait profile, good personal goal-progress, high self-esteem, positive social support, and a happiness-conducing cultural membership would each uniquely predict SWB. These hypotheses were confirmed, supporting the hierarchical perspective and irreducibility assumption that under-girded the research. Implications for SWB theory and interventions, and for the task of integrating the many different types of personality constructs that exist, are discussed. Note: this reference sometimes appears incorrectly as Sheldon, K. M., & Tan, H. (2007).

Sheldon, K. M., Kashdan, T. B., & Steget, M. F. (Eds.). (2011). Designing positive psychology: Taking stock and moving forward. doi:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195373585.001.0001

Sheldon, K. M., & Kasser, T. (2001). Goals, congruence, and positive well–being: New empirical support for humanistic theories [Special issue]. Journal of Humanistic Psychology, 41(1), 30–50. doi:10.1177/0022167801411004. Although some have suggested that humanistic theories and quantitative methodologies are inherently contradictory, this article will try to demonstrate that they can be quite complementary. To this end, the authors will review their own findings with regard to the nature of "positive motivation," research that has been based in humanistic theoretical ideas but that also has employed state–of–the–art quantitative methodologies, longitudinal designs, and causal modeling techniques. First, the article discusses numerous studies that have shown that striving for authentic, self–concordant reasons yields greater goal attainment and enhanced well–being. Second, the article reviews evidence that well–being and relationship quality are also better when people orient toward intrinsic values such as intimacy, community, and growth, rather than extrinsic values such as status, money, and image. The authors conclude that the positive psychology movement offers important new opportunities to bridge the gap between humanistic and more mainstream psychologies, to the potential enrichment of both fields.

Sheldon, K. M., & King, L. (2001). Why positive psychology is necessary [Special issue]. American Psychologist, 56(3), 216–217. doi:10.1037/0003–066X.56.3.216. The authors provide a definition of positive psychology and suggest that psychologists should try to cultivate a more appreciative perspective on human nature. Examples are given of a negative bias that seems to pervade much of theoretical psychology, which may limit psychologists' understanding of typical and successful human functioning. Finally, a preview of the articles in the special section is given.

Sheldon, K. M., & Lyubomirsky, S. (2006). How to increase and sustain positive emotion: The effects of expressing gratitude and visualizing best possible selves. The Journal of Positive Psychology, 1(2), 73–82. doi:10.1080/17439760500510676. A 4–week experimental study (N = 67) examined the motivational predictors and positive emotion outcomes of regularly practicing two mental exercises: counting one's blessings ("gratitude") and visualizing best possible selves ("EPS"). In a control exercise, participants attended to the details of their day. Undergraduates performed one of the three exercises during Session I and were asked to continue performing it at home until Session II (in 2 weeks) and again until Session III (in a further 2 weeks). Following previous theory and research, the practices of gratitude and BPS were expected to boost immediate positive affect, relative to the control condition. In addition, we hypothesized that continuing effortful performance of these exercises would be necessary to maintain the boosts (Lyubomirsky, S., Sheldon, K. M., & Schkade, D. (2005a). Pursuing happiness: The architecture of sustainable change. Review of General Psychology, 9, 111–131). Finally, initial self–concordant motivation to perform the exercise was expected to predict actual performance and to moderate the effects of performance on increased mood. Results generally supported these hypotheses, and suggested that the BPS exercise may be most beneficial for raising and maintaining positive mood. Implications of the results for understanding the critical factors involved in increasing and sustaining positive affect are discussed.

Shernoff, D. J., Csikszentmihalyi, M., Schneider, B., & Shernoff, E. S. (2003). Student engagement in high school classrooms from the perspective of flow theory [Special issue]. School Psychology Quarterly, 18(2), 158–176. doi:10.1521/scpq. We present a conceptualization of student engagement based on the culmination of concentration, interest, and enjoyment (i.e., flow). Using a longitudinal sample of 526 high school students across the U.S., we investigated how adolescents spent their time in high school and the conditions under which they reported being engaged. Participants experienced increased engagement when the perceived challenge of the task and their own skills were high and in balance, the instruction was relevant, and the learning environment was under their control. Participants were also more engaged in individual and group work versus listening to lectures, watching videos, or taking exams. Suggestions to increase engagement, such as focusing on learning activities that support students' autonomy and provide an appropriate level of challenge for students' skills, conclude the article.

Shih, M. (2004). Positive stigma: Examining resilience and empowerment in overcoming stigma. The Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science, 591(1), 175–185. doi:10.1177/0002716203260099. The traditional literature on stigma focuses on identifying factors contributing to the harmful impact of stigmas on the lives of stigmatized individuals. This focus, however, cannot explain the many cases of individuals possessing a stigmatized identity flourishing in our society. This article investigates the processes that successful stigmatized individuals use to overcome the harmful consequences of stigmatization. Specifically, this article reviews three processes: (1) compensation; (2) strategic interpretations of the social environment; and (3) focusing on multiple identities that have been identified in the literature to help stigmatized individuals handle prejudice and discrimination. Moreover, successful individuals adopt an "empowerment" model as opposed to a "coping" model when dealing with stigma. In other words, successful individuals view overcoming the adversities associated with stigma as an empowering process, as opposed to a depleting process. This discussion underscores the importance of adopting a new approach to gain a fuller understanding of the experience of being stigmatized.

Shin, N., Vaughn, B. E., Akers, V., Kim, M., Stevens, S., Krzysik, L., Coppola, G., et al. (2011). Are happy children socially successful? Testing a central premise of positive psychology in a sample of preschool children. The Journal of Positive Psychology, 6, 355-367. doi:10.1080/17439760.2011.584549 Current developmental studies of affect/emotion emphasize knowledge about and regulation of affective states and/or behaviors. Expressiveness per se is rarely studied independently from knowledge and/or regulation; consequently, recent studies of young children's affect do not interface with the literature from positive psychology indicating that the chronic experience of positive affect predicts a range of desirable life outcomes. We assessed affect expressiveness for 377 preschool children in dyadic peer play. Correlation indicated that dyadic positive affect was associated with peer acceptance, visual attention received from peers, rate of initiating positive interactions, and classroom adjustment from teachers' ratings and that negative affect was associated (negatively) with peer acceptance. Negative affect was also positively associated with teacher-rated dysregulation. Subsequent multi-level regressions showed that positive and negative affect uniquely predicted most of their respective correlates when entered together as Level-1 predictors with dysregulation.

Shmotkin, D., Berkovich, M., & Cohen, K. (2006). Combining happiness and suffering in a retrospective view of anchor periods in life: A differential approach to subjective well-being. Social Indicators Research, 77(1), 139-169. doi:10.1007/s11205-005-5556-x The intersection of dimensions of subjective well-being (SWB) generates SWB types. We delineated SWB types by cross-tabulating happiness and suffering ratings that participants attributed to outstandingly meaningful periods in their life referred to as anchor periods. A sample of 499 older Israelis (age 58–94) was queried about two positive periods (the happiest, the most important) and two negative periods (the most miserable, the most difficult). A variety of variables discriminated between the more frequent congruous types of Happy (high happiness and low suffering) and Unhappy (low happiness and high suffering), but also presented the incongruous types of Inflated (high happiness and high suffering) and Deflated (low happiness and low suffering) as discriminable. Thus, women were more likely to be Inflated whereas men were more likely to be Deflated; low education related more to Happy in the happiest period and to Unhappy in the negative periods; present life satisfaction related more to Happy than to Unhappy in the positive, but not in the negative, periods; and Holocaust survivors were more likely to be Deflated and Unhappy in the negative, but not in the positive, periods. The study supported a differential perspective on SWB within people's narratives of their lives.

Simmons, B. L., Gooty, J., Nelson, D. L., & Little, L. M. (2009). Secure attachment: Implications for hope, trust, burnout, and performance. Journal of Organizational Behavior, 30(2), 233–247. doi:10.1002/job.585. Secure attachment is a healthy attachment style that enables individuals to work autonomously as well as with others when appropriate. Secure attachments are characterized by internal regulatory mechanisms that allow individuals to be flexible and constructive in their interpersonal relationships Our model incorporates hope, trust in one's supervisor, and burnout as explanatory variables that translate the benefits of secure attachment into better supervisor–rated task performance. Among 161 employees of an assisted living center and their supervisors, secure attachment had a significant, positive relationship with hope, trust, and burnout, but only trust had a significant, positive relationship with supervisor–rated performance. These results indicate that secure attachment should be considered a positive psychological strength that has important implications for working adults.

Simonton, D. K. (2000). Cognitive, personal, developmental, and social aspects [Special issue]. American Psychologist, 55(1), 151–158. doi:10.1037/0003–066X.55.1.151Although many psychologists have expressed an interest in the phenomenon of creativity, psychological research on this topic did not rapidly expand until after J. P. Guilford claimed, in his 1950 APA presidential address, that this topic deserved far more attention than it was then receiving. This article reviews the progress psychologists have made in understanding creativity since Guilford's call to arms. Research progress has taken place on 4 fronts: the cognitive processes involved in the creative act, the distinctive characteristics of the creative person, the development and manifestation of creativity across the individual life span, and the social environments most strongly associated with creative activity. Although some important questions remain unanswered, psychologists now know more than ever before about how individuals achieve this special and significant form of optimal human functioning.

Simonton, D. K. (2011). Positive psychology in historical and philosophical perspective. In K. M. Sheldon, T. B. Kashdan, & M. F. Steger, (Eds.), Designing positive psychology: Taking stock and moving forward (pp. 447-454). doi:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195373585.003.0031

Simonton, D. K. (2012). Teaching creativity: Current findings, trends, and controversies in the psychology of creativity. Teaching of Psychology, 39, 217-222. doi:10.1177/0098628312450444 In the past decade, the psychological study of creativity has accelerated greatly. To facilitate the teaching of creativity, I provide an overview of the recent literature. The overview begins by discussing recent empirical results and research trends. This discussion specifically treats creativity's cognitive, differential, developmental, and social aspects. Then I outline central controversies in the study of creativity. These debates concern the nature of creative thought (domain-specific vs. generic processes), creative development (nature vs. nurture), and creative persons (psychopathology vs. mental health). The article closes by asking not just how to teach creativity but also how to teach creativity creatively.

Simonton, D. K., & Baumeister, R. F. (2005). Positive psychology at the summit [Special issue]. Review of General Psychology, 9(2), 99–102. doi:10.1037/1089–2680.9.2.99. Psychology has traditionally placed more emphasis on the negative than positive aspects of human behavior. The positive psychology movement, since its beginnings in 1999, has made major advances toward correcting this imbalance. Research inspired by the movement now spans an impressive range of topics, including many that are absolutely essential to a comprehensive psychological understanding of human nature. The present special issue provides a sampling of some of the best work in the area. All but the first and last articles come from presentations at the Second International Positive Psychology Summit, held in 2003 in Washington, DC. This sample can be supplemented by the chapters that have appeared in several recent anthologies of contemporary research.

Sinnott, J. D. (2010). Coherent themes: Individuals' relationships with god, their early childhood experiences, their bonds with significant others, and their relational delusions during psychotic episodes all have similar holistic, existential, and relational themes [Special issue]. Journal of Adult Development, 17(4), 230–244. doi:10.1007/s10804–009–9090–y. An adult seems to articulate surprisingly similar meaning themes and similar processes about relationships in several widely disparate domains of behavior, domains of both non–pathological and pathological types. Whether the person is consciously describing early relationships with parental figures, unconsciously acting them out in current relationships, experiencing relationships with God or the Transcendent, or acting on the basis of relational delusions during psychotic episodes, his or his experienced relational reality seems to be filtered through a single, coherent, personally unique spiritual, existential, and epistemological relational lens. Conflicts may involve other relational meanings, but may be conflicts because of the existence of that dominant lens. Two parts of that dominant lens system, specifically the part relating the person's concept of God to the other parts of the system and the part relating the specifics of psychotic breaks and spiritual emergence to other parts of the system, are seldom discussed. Both understanding the person's dominant relational lens and the implications of that person's using the lens to see reality, and sharing that knowledge with the individual (if he or he has stabilized to some degree) can help the troubled or disoriented individual. That person can gradually give a more adaptive meaning to consistent distortions in the many areas of meaning and behavior attached to relationships, and even to very skewed behavior such as hallucinations and delusions during psychotic breaks. Distortions during experiences of spiritual emergence also can be made clearer to the disturbed client if the therapist has a better understanding of the person's overall coherent relational meaning system and its implications, and can translate the language of that system into spiritually transformative terms. A case is summarized and discussed as an example of these ideas. Then, two theories are described. A useful theory of human–felt connection and a cognitive developmental theory of Postformal Complex Thought have been developed by the author and described in earlier publications. These two theories help make sense of the multiple but coherent themes, cognitive dimensions of theme genesis and change, and the nature of the relational lenses used. Suggestions about interventions in the person's system of coherently distorted relational themes, suggestions based on the two theories, are discussed. The recommendation is made that all therapists become fluent in the languages of, and especially the connections among, all of the relational areas named in the title of this paper that are part of the coherent relational theme.

Sinnott, J. D. (2010). Introduction: Special issue on positive psychology and adult development [Special issue]. Journal of Adult Development, 17(2), 57–58. doi:10.1007/s10804–009–9085–8. The study of Positive Psychology brings a much needed emphasis to the study of the cognition, traits and contexts of behavior that are associated with optimal development and flourishing during the entire course of life. It highlights the ways in which growth, hope, and resilience (to name just a few concepts) aid a person in dealing with the inevitable challenges of life, either in individual terms or via organizations that optimize chances for growth. The papers in this first Special Issue on Positive Psychology and Adult Development focus especially on wisdom, the workplace, and mental health issues.

Sinnott, J. D. (2010). Introduction: Special issue on positive psychology and adult development [Special issue]. Journal of Adult Development, 17(4), 191–192. doi:10.1007/s10804–010–9110–y. The study of Positive Psychology brings a much needed emphasis to the study of the cognitions, traits, and contexts of behavior that are associated with optimal development and flourishing during the entire course of life. It highlights the ways in which growth, hope, and resilience (to name just a few concepts) aid a person in dealing with the inevitable challenges of life, either in individual terms or via organizations that optimize chances for growth. The papers in this second Special Issue on Positive Psychology and Adult Development focus especially on friendship, spirituality, wisdom, and mental health issues.

Skrabski, A., Kopp, M., Rózsa, S., Réthelyi, J., & Rahe, R. H. (2005). Life meaning: An important correlate of health in the Hungarian population. [Special issue]. International Journal of Behavioral Medicine, 12(2), 78–85. doi: 0.1207/s15327558ijbm1202_5. One of the 5 coping scales in Rahe's Brief Stress and Coping Inventory, entitled Life Meaning, was examined in relation to demographic characteristics, other coping measures, and health status in a sample of 12,640 Hungarian participants. Participants were selected to represent the country's population according to sex, age, and place of residence. The study also explored the contribution of life meaning to the explanation of variations of middle–aged (45–64 years) male and female mortality rates across 150 subregions in Hungary. On an ecological level life meaning proved to be inversely related to male and female oncological, female cardiovascular, and total premature mortality rates in the 150 subregions of Hungary and on an individual level to participants' reported health status. In the total sample of individuals after controlling for gender, age, and education, life meaning scores showed strong correlations with the World Health Organization well–being scale, with self–rated absence of depression, with self–rated health, and with self–rated absence of disability. Although relatively unrelated to age, gender, and education, life meaning was positively related to self–efficacy, importance of religion, problem–oriented coping, and social support.

Slade, M. (2010). Mental illness and well–being: the central importance of positive psychology and recovery approaches. BMC Health Services Research, 10, 26. doi:10.1186/1472–6963–10–26. A new evidence base is emerging, which focuses on well–being. This makes it possible for health services to orientate around promoting well–being as well as treating illness, and so to make a reality of the long–standing rhetoric that health is more than the absence of illness. The aim of this paper is to support the re–orientation of health services around promoting well–being. Mental health services are used as an example to illustrate the new knowledge skills which will be needed by health professionals.

Slife, B. D., & Richardson, F. C. (2008). Problematic ontological underpinnings of positive psychology: A strong relational alternative [Special issue]. Theory & Psychology, 18(5), 699–723. doi:10.1177/0959354308093403. In this article, we contend that many of the problems delineated in this special issue on positive psychology stem from an unexamined philosophical premise—its ontology. The world of 'ontology' is vast and somewhat ill defined, but here we mean simply assumptions of what is ultimately real and fundamental, especially regarding the self. We first clarify and compare two major ontologies of the self, one that we argue underlies and spawns problems for positive psychology and one that we will describe as a promising alternative for the project of positive psychology. We focus on three important features of this project: (1) commitment to an ideal of the 'disinterested observer'; (2) emotional satisfaction as a key conception; and (3) the tendency to view human phenomena as decontextualized from culture, history, and even physical situations. These features will display both how one set of ontological premises has underlain mainstream positive psychology and how the alternative offers a fresh perspective that addresses many issues within the field.

Smith, C. (2008). Positive psychology mind map. Retrieved from http://www.positivepsychology.org.uk/images/stories/files/Claire_Smith_MM.pdf

Smith, M. B. (1961). Mental health reconsidered: A special case of the problem of values in psychology. American Psychologist, 16(6), 299-306. doi:10.1037/h0045048 "If we understand 'mental health' not as an unsatisfactory and vague theoretical concept but as a reasonably adequate rubric or label for an evaluative psychological perspective on personality [horizontal ellipsis] we can go about our business without wasting our efforts on the search for consensus on a unique set of mental health criteria when consensus is not to be had [horizontal ellipsis]. What is to be avoided is the surreptitious advocacy of values disguised under presumptive scientific auspices. The lists of psychological desiderata that psychologists have continued to propose, each reflecting the value commitments of its proponent, have this drawback."

Smith, T. W. (1979). Happiness: Time trends, seasonal variations, intersurvey differences, and other mysteries. Social Psychology Quarterly, 42(1), 18-30. doi:10.2307/3033870 This paper examines trends in psychological well-being in the United States since the Second World War. To measure these trends, a long series of surveys with questions on subjective, personal happiness are analyzed. To test the adequacy of this measure, its association with more complex measures of well-being (e.g., the Bradbum Affect Balance scale and the Andrews and Withey life-feeling scale) was examined, and its test-retest stability determined. Both indicated that happiness might serve as a suitable indicator. Variations in question wording were examined in the happiness series. Differences were found that prevented all wordings being used in a uniform, single series, hut the general trends were detectable by using the two main variations as parallel series. Possible seasonal and context effects were also found that further complicated the analysis of happiness. With the effects of variant wordings, seasons, and contexts taken into consideration, it appears that happiness rose from the late forties to the late fifties, then fell until the early seventies, and then, possibly after some rebound, remained stable from the early seventies to the present.

Snyder, C. R. (2004). Hope and the other strengths: Lessons from Animal Farm [Special issue]. Journal of Social and Clinical Psychology, 23(5), 624–627. doi:10.1521/jscp.23.5.624.50751.

Snyder, C. R., Harris, C., Anderson, J. R., Holleran, S., Irving, L. M., Sigmon, S. T., et al. (1991). The will and the ways: development and validation of an individual–differences measure of hope. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 60(4), 570–85. doi:10.1037/0022–3514.60.4.570. Defining hope as a cognitive set that is composed of a reciprocally derived sense of successful (a) agency (goal–directed determination) and (b) pathways (planning of ways to meet goals), an individual–differences measure is developed. Studies demonstrate acceptable internal consistency and test–retest reliability, and the factor structure identifies the agency and pathways components of the Hope Scale. Convergent and discriminant validity are documented, along with evidence suggesting that Hope Scale scores augmented the prediction of goal–related activities and coping strategies beyond other self–report measures. Construct validational support is provided in regard to predicted goal–setting behaviors; moreover, the hypothesized goal appraisal processes that accompany the various levels of hope are corroborated.

Snyder, C. R., & Lopez, S. J. (2002). Handbook of positive psychology. New York, NY: Oxford University.

Snyder, C. R., & Lopez, S. J. (2007). Positive psychology: The scientific and practical explorations of human strengths. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.

Snyder, C. R., Lopez, S. J., & Pedrotti, J. T. (2010). Positive psychology: The scientific and practical explorations of human strengths (2nd ed.). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.

Snyder, C. R., Lopez, S. J., Shorey, H. S., Rand, K. L., & Feldman, D. B. (2003). Hope theory, measurements, and applications to school psychology [Special issue]. School Psychology Quarterly, 18(2), 122–139. doi:10.1521/scpq. The tenets of a cognitive, motivational model called hope theory (Snyder et al., 1991) are reviewed, along with the two accompanying instruments for measuring hope in children and adolescents. More than a decade of research on hope theory as it relates to students, teachers, and schools is summarized. Likewise, the applications of hope theory for school psychologists are reviewed.

Spady, J. D. (2007). The evolution of positive psychology: Past to present. Unpublished manuscript. Retrieved June 18, 2005, from http://peaktransformations.com/web_documents/evolution_of_positive_psychology_past_to_present.doc

Spence, G. B. (2007). Further development of evidence–based coaching: Lessons from the rise and fall of the human potential movement. Australian Psychologist, 42(4), 255–265. doi:10.1080/00050060701648142. Although several authors have argued for the development of an evidence–based approach to coaching practice, few attempts have been made to draw support for these arguments by examining events of the recent past. This paper seeks to learn some lessons from history by exploring events surrounding the rise and fall of the human potential movement (HPM), which occurred between the 1940s and 1970s. The demise of the HPM is of relevance to the coaching industry because it powerfully illustrates how the promise and potential of innovative practices can be easily lost when its practitioners become disconnected from theoretically sound rationales and solid research. It is argued that the longevity of the coaching industry will be dependent upon the degree to which it embraces the evidence–based practice ethos, and concludes by outlining recent contributions made by psychologists to the advance of evidence–based coaching practice.

Stalikas, A., & Fitzpatrick, M. R. (2008). Positive emotions in psychotherapy theory, research, and practice: New kid on the block [Special issue] Journal of Psychotherapy Integration, 18(2), 155–166. doi:10.1037/1053–0479.18.2.155. This article introduces the Special Section, which explores the potential importance of positive emotions in our theory, research, and practice. The authors propose that the peripheral role that psychotherapy theory, research, and practice has allotted to the variable "positive emotion" can be understood in terms of the foundational axioms of our discipline. The authors argue that psychotherapy has implicitly adopted an attitude of caution and suspicion toward the potential therapeutic value of experiencing positive emotions, an all embracing attitude toward the therapeutic value of experiencing negative emotions, and an identity focused on healing psychological wounds at the expense of promoting psychological well–being. The authors trace the adoption of these axioms to Judeo–Christian ideas of human nature and to the identity formation process of psychotherapy, and the authors speculate on the sociopolitical forces that have promoted a shift in our theorizing in the last few decades.

Steen, T. A., Kachorek, L. V., & Peterson, C. (2003). Character strengths among youth. Journal of Youth and Adolescence, 32(1), 5–16. Springer. Retrieved July 17, 2011, from http://www.springerlink.com/index/L4726711W161G12V.pdf. Four hundred and fifty nine students from 20 different high school classrooms in Michigan participated in focus group discussions about the character strengths included in the Values in Action Classification. Students were interested in the subject of good character and able to discuss with candor and sophistication instances of each strength. They were especially drawn to the positive traits of leadership, practical intelligence, wisdom, social intelligence, love of learning, spirituality, and the capacity to love and be loved. Students believed that strengths were largely acquired rather than innate and that these strengths developed through ongoing life experience as opposed to formal instruction. They cited an almost complete lack of contemporary role models exemplifying different strengths of character. Implications of these findings for the quantitative assessment of positive traits were discussed, as were implications for designing character education programs for adolescents. We suggest that peers can be an especially important force in encouraging the development and display of good character among youth.

Steger, M. F., Kashdan, T. B., & Oishi, S. (2008). Being good by doing good: Daily eudaimonic activity and well–being. Journal of Research in Personality, 42(1), 22–42. doi:10.1016/j.jrp.2007.03.004 Theories of hedonic, eudaimonic, and social well–being provide 3 extensively studied models for explaining flourishing mental health. Few studies have examined whether these models can be integrated into a comprehensive structure of well–being. The present study builds upon previous theoretical and empirical work to determine the complex relationships among these 3 models of well–being. Confirmatory factor analysis techniques were used to test a series of models in order to (a) confirm the proposed latent structures of hedonic, eudaimonic, and social well–being and (b) examine whether these models could be successfully integrated into a hierarchical structure of well–being. In 2 large samples, results supported the proposed latent structures of hedonic, eudaimonic, and social well–being and indicated that the various components of well–being could be represented most parsimoniously with 3 oblique second–order constructs of hedonic, eudaimonic, and social well–being.

Steger, M. F., Kashdan, T. B., Sullivan, B. A., & Lorentz, D. (2008). Understanding the search for meaning in life: Personality, cognitive style, and the dynamic between seeking and experiencing meaning. Journal of personality, 76(2), 199–228. Wiley Online Library. doi:10.1111/j.1467–6494.2007.00484.x Although several theories assert that understanding the search for meaning in life is important, empirical research on this construct is sparse. Three studies provide the first extensive effort to understand the correlates of the search for meaning in a multistudy research program. Assessed were relations between search for meaning and well–being, cognitive style, and the Big Five, Big Three, Approach/Avoidance, and Interest models of personality, with a particular emphasis on understanding the correlates of search for meaning that are independent of presence of meaning. Conceptual models of the relation between search and presence were tested. Findings suggest that people lacking meaning search for it; the search for meaning did not appear to lead to its presence. Study 3 found that basic motive dispositions moderated relations between search for meaning and its presence. Results highlight the importance of basic personality dispositions in understanding the search for meaning and its correlates.

Steger, M. F., Oishi, S., & Kesebir, S. (2011). Is a life without meaning satisfying? The moderating role of the search for meaning in satisfaction with life judgments. The Journal of Positive Psychology, 6, 173-180. doi:10.1080/17439760.2011.569171 Results from two studies revealed that the relation between meaning in life and life satisfaction was moderated by the extent to which the rater was searching for meaning in his or her life. In Studies 1a and 1b, the presence of meaning was more strongly related to life satisfaction for those who were actively searching for meaning in life than for those who were not. Study 2 extended the finding to judgments concerning a fictitious target's life satisfaction based on experimentally manipulated information regarding meaning in life. Thus, the role of meaning in life satisfaction judgments varies across individuals, depending on the level of search for meaning in life. These results suggest that search for meaning behaves like a schema increasing the salience of meaningrelevant information, and provides new ways of understanding people's efforts to establish meaningful lives.

Steptoe, A., Dockray, S., & Wardle, J. (2009). Positive affect and psychobiological processes relevant to health. Journal of Personality, 77(6), 1747–76. doi:10.1111/j.1467–6494.2009.00599.x. Empirical evidence suggests that there are marked associations between positive psychological states and health outcomes, including reduced cardiovascular disease risk and increased resistance to infection. These observations have stimulated the investigation of behavioral and biological processes that might mediate protective effects. Evidence linking positive affect with health behaviors has been mixed, though recent cross–cultural research has documented associations with exercising regularly, not smoking, and prudent diet. At the biological level, cortisol output has been consistently shown to be lower among individuals reporting positive affect, and favorable associations with heart rate, blood pressure, and inflammatory markers such as interleukin–6 have also been described. Importantly, these relationships are independent of negative affect and depressed mood, suggesting that positive affect may have distinctive biological correlates that can benefit health. At the same time, positive affect is associated with protective psychosocial factors such as greater social connectedness, perceived social support, optimism, and preference for adaptive coping responses. Positive affect may be part of a broader profile of psychosocial resilience that reduces risk of adverse physical health outcomes.

Sternberg, R. J. (2004). What is Wisdom and How Can We Develop It? [Special issue]. The Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science, 591(1), 164–174. doi:10.1177/0002716203260097. Wisdom is the use of one's intelligence and experience as mediated by values toward the achievement of a common good through a balance among (1) intrapersonal, (2) interpersonal, and (3) extrapersonal interests, over the (1) short and (2) long terms, to achieve a balance among (1) adaptation to existing environments, (2) shaping of existing environments, and (3) selection of new environments. This article discusses the balance theory of wisdom, and how wisdom can be assessed and developed.

Sternberg, R. J., & Grigorenko, E. L. (2001). Unified psychology. The American psychologist, 56(12), 1069–79. doi:10.1037/0003–066X.56.12.1069 The authors describe an approach to psychology they refer to as unified psychology, which is the multiparadigmatic, multidisciplinary, and integrated study of psychological phenomena through converging operations. In this article, they unpack this definition and explore some of its implications. First, they review some previous efforts to conceive of a unified psychology and consider objections to such an undertaking. Second, they discuss the importance of converging operations for psychology. Third, they consider the need for multidisciplinary and integrated study of psychological phenomena that focuses on the phenomena rather than on particular lines of disciplinary inquiry. Fourth, they ponder the problem of investigators' becoming locked into a single paradigm with its attendant set of presuppositions about psychological theory and research. Fifth, they outline some possible objections to their proposal and respond to them. Finally, they discuss some implications of their views.

Sternberg, R. J., & Grigorenko, E. L. (2002). E pluribus unum. American Psychologist, 57(12), 1129-1130. doi:10.1037//0003-066X.57.12.1129

Stevenson, B., & Wolfers, J. (2008). Happiness inequality in the United States [Special issue]. The Journal of Legal Studies, 37(S2), S33–S79. doi:10.1086/592004. This paper examines how the level and dispersion of self‐reported happiness has evolved over the period 1972–2006. While there has been no increase in aggregate happiness, inequality in happiness has fallen substantially since the 1970s. There have been large changes in the level of happiness across groups: two‐thirds of the black‐white happiness gap has been eroded, and the gender happiness gap has disappeared entirely. Paralleling changes in the income distribution, differences in happiness by education have widened substantially. We develop an integrated approach to measuring inequality and decomposing changes in the distribution of happiness, finding a pervasive decline in within‐group inequality during the 1970s and 1980s that was experienced by even narrowly defined demographic groups. Around one‐third of this decline has subsequently been unwound. Juxtaposing these changes with large increases in income inequality suggests an important role for nonpecuniary factors in shaping the well‐being distribution.

Stones, M. J., Worobetz, S., & Brink, P. (2011). Overestimated relationships with subjective well–being. Canadian Psychology/Psychologie canadienne, 52(2), 93–100. doi:10.1037/a0020694. This article is about relationships between subjective well–being (SWB) and variables such as demographics, intentional activities, personality traits, and personal characteristics. Causal interpretation of these relationships is usually asymmetric from the variable to SWB, although the literature also contains interpretations of reverse or bidirectional causality. Evidence reviewed here suggests that heritable personality traits may underlie some of these relationships. A consequence is that covariance may be lower than lower than indicated by phenotypic (within individual) correlations. The article discusses some implications for positive psychology.

Strong, M. (2008). Investing in happiness: Philanthropy as a guide to positive psychology [Special issue]. Conversations on Philanthropy, V, 35–48. Retrieved from http://www.conversationsonphilanthropy.org/index.php?option=com_flexicontent&view=items&cid=74&id=49&Itemid=56

Strümpfer, D. J. W. (2005). Standing on the shoulders of giants: Notes on early positive psychology. South African Journal of Psychology, 35(1), 21–45. PSYCHOLOGICAL SOCIETY OF SOUTH AFRICA. Retrieved from http://www.sabinet.co.za/abstracts/sapsyc/sapsyc_v35_n1_a2.html Psychofortology is an alternative designation for positive psychology, and fortology (Latin fortis = strong) an antonym for pathology. The strengths paradigm has ancient origins. In this article brief reviews are presented of contributions made during the first eight decades of the twentieth century by mainly psychologists and psychiatrists. Among the most outstanding were James, Jung, Allport, Murray, Rogers, Frankl, Maslow, Csikszentmihalyi and Antonovsky; in all, some 40 forerunners are mentioned. By way of integration, their concepts are classified in terms of J. M. Digman's (1997) higher order personality factors α (socialisation process) and β (personal growth), as well as spirituality/religiousness. A preponderance of the personal growth category was noticeable, particularly from the late 1950s until the early 1970s. The relative neglect of socialisation and interdependencies deserves to be remedied in fortological theory and research.

Strümpfer, D. J. W. (2006). The strengths perspective: Fortigenesis in adult life. Social Indicators Research, 77(1), 11-36. doi:10.1007/s11205-005-5551-2 "Fortigenesis" (L. fortis=strong) refers to a process of developing strengths at a variety of endpoints. Assumptions are: (i) there exist 2 continua, of mental illness and mental health, along which waxing and waning in the process of fortigenesis moves individuals in the directions of more or less strength; (ii) challenge, struggling and suffering, due to inordinate demands, are inherent to the human condition; (iii) there are strengths to negotiate and resile these demands, and even to harness them towards subsequent flourishing; and (iv) there are also purely positive experiences. The background to a "science of strength" is presented briefly. Subjective well-being, questing for meaning, thriving/flourishing, and interpersonal flourishing, are reviewed as illustrative themes. The review is limited to English language and Occidental literature, and to matters mainly apparent in individual adult lives.

Sugarman, J. (2007). Practical rationality and the questionable promise of positive psychology. Journal of Humanistic Psychology, 47(2), 175–197. doi:10.1177/0022167806297061. It is argued that positive psychology is committed to an ideology of technical and instrumental scientific rationality. The article describes features of this ideology, its historical emergence and adoption by disciplinary psychology, its pervasive influence across contemporary life, its problems and dangers, and the way in which it is promoted by positive psychology. By failing to grasp the extent of this influence in their practices and beliefs, it is claimed that positive psychologists inadvertently undermine the Aristotelian–inspired notion of human fulfillment they seek to advance. The upshot is that positive psychology will further reduce our horizons of reflection on human flourishing, as our ordinary capacities for practical judgment are devalued and supplanted by the presumed expertise of psychological professionals who effectively guide us toward unreflective ends.

Suissa, J. (2008). Lessons from a new science? On teaching happiness in schools [Special issue]. Journal of Philosophy of Education, 42(3–4), 575–590. doi: 10.1111/j.1467–9752.2008.00642.x. Recent media reports about new programmes for 'happiness lessons' in schools signal a welcome concern with children's well–being. However, as I shall argue, the presuppositions of the discourse in which many of these proposals are framed, and their orientation towards particular strands of positive psychology, involve ideas about human life that are, in an important sense, anti–educational.

Suldo, S., Thalji, A., & Ferron, J. (2011). Longitudinal academic outcomes predicted by early adolescents' subjective well–being, psychopathology, and mental health status yielded from a dual factor model. The Journal of Positive Psychology, 6(1), 17–30. doi:10.1080/17439760.2010.536774. This longitudinal investigation examined the utility of subjective well–being (SWB) and psychopathology in predicting subsequent academic achievement and in–school behavior in 300 middle school students. Initial SWB predicted students' grade point averages (GPAs) 1 year later, initial internalizing psychopathology predicted absences 1 year later, and initial externalizing psychopathology predicted grades, absences, and discipline problems 1 year later. Students' grades and attendance across time varied as a function of mental health group yielded from a dual factor model. Specifically, students in the troubled mental health group declined at a significantly faster rate on GPAs than youth without psychopathology. In contrast, students in the symptomatic but content group were not significantly different from peers with low psychopathology. At Time 2, the best attendance, grades, and math skills were found among students who had both average/high SWB and low psychopathology 1 year earlier, supporting the long–term utility of complete mental health.

Sundararajan, L. (2005). Happiness donut: A Confucian critique of positive psychology. Journal of Theoretical and Philosophical Psychology, 25(1), 35–60. doi:10.1037/h0091250. An empirically based version of the good life as proposed by positive psychology is a donut with something missing at the core–the moral map. This paper addresses ramifications of this lacuna, and suggests ways to narrow the gap between science and life. By applying an extended version of the self–regulation theory of Higgins to a cross cultural analysis of the good life as envisioned by Seligman and Confucius, respectively, this paper sheds light on the culturally encapsulated value judgments behind positive psychology, examines issues at stake in an empirically based version of the good life, and suggests, for future research, alternative approaches that may better fulfill the promises of positive psychology.

Sundararajan, L. (2008). Toward a reflexive positive psychology: Insights from the Chinese Buddhist notion of emptiness [Special issue]. Theory & Psychology, 18(5), 655–674. doi:10.1177/0959354308093400. This paper claims that the missing value dimension in positive psychology's model of the good life is attributable to its focus on the unreflective first–order desires, as exemplified by hope theory, and its misguided claim of scientific neutrality that renders invisible the moral maps of human experiences. It is argued that the solution of the problem lies in self–reflexivity, which is an extra mental space needed for the drawing and redrawing of moral maps. Exposition of self–reflexivity shows how a self–to–self transaction adds a so far neglected intrapersonal dimension to cross–cultural analysis, and how moral maps are rendered visible and transformative in second–order desires, as exemplified by the Chinese Buddhist notions of savoring and 'emptiness.'

Sunstein, C. R. (2008). Illusory Losses. The Journal of Legal Studies, 37(S2), S157–S194. doi: 10.1086/595675. Recent empirical work demonstrates that healthy people make large mistakes when evaluating the welfare of those suffering from apparently serious health problems. Significant adverse conditions often inflict little or no hedonic damage—sometimes because people adapt to them, and sometimes because those who suffer many losses do not, after a time, focus on them. These findings have important implications for the legal system, especially for awards for pain, suffering, and hedonic losses, where juries are likely to overestimate the effect of injuries on happiness. There are two important qualifications. First, some injuries, such as chronic pain, do inflict significant hedonic losses because people cannot adapt and inevitably focus on them. Second, people may suffer capability loss without suffering hedonic loss, and that loss should be compensable. The legal system might be improved by civil damages guidelines to correct hedonic judgment errors by juries. Broader implications include the appropriate priorities for governments attempting to improve the welfare of their citizens.

Synnestvedt, D. A. (2006). Happiness through the ages: A sketch. The New Philosophy, January–June, 285–313. Retrieved from http://www.swedenborg–philosophy.org/journal/index.php?page=archive#109a

Tay, L., & Diener, E. (2011). Needs and subjective well-being around the world. Journal of personality and social psychology, 101(2), 354 -365. doi:10.1037/a0023779 Across a sample of 123 countries, we examined the association between the fulfillment of needs and subjective well-being (SWB), including life evaluation, positive feelings, and negative feelings. Need fulfillment was consistently associated with SWB across world regions. Life evaluation was most associated with fulfilling basic needs; positive feelings were most associated with social and respect needs; and negative feelings were most associated with basic, respect, and autonomy needs. Societal need fulfillment predicted SWB, particularly for life evaluation, beyond individuals' fulfillment of their own needs, indicating the desirability of living in a flourishing society. In addition, the associations of SWB with the fulfillment of specific needs were largely independent of whether other needs were fulfilled. These trends persisted when household income was taken into account. The emergent ordering of need fulfillment for psychosocial needs were fairly consistent across country conditions, but the fulfillment of basic and safety needs were contingent on country membership. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2011 APA, all rights reserved).

Taylor, C. (1989). Sources of the self: The making of the modern identity. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.

Taylor, E. (2001). Positive psychology and humanistic psychology: A reply to Seligman [Special issue]. Journal of Humanistic Psychology, 41(1), 13–29. doi:10.1177/0022167801411003. Arguments in the current debate between "positive psychology" and humanistic psychology are reviewed with particular emphasis on Martin Seligman's comment that humanistic psychologists do not represent "positive psychology" because they have generated no research tradition, are narcissistic, and are antiscientific. Each one of these claims is dispelled with specific references to the larger humanistic tradition in American psychology, which includes the psychology of William James; the personality–social psychologists of the 1930s and 1940s, such as Allport, Murray, and Murphy; and the humanistic psychologists, per se, of the 1950s and 1960s. Additional examples of how mainstream cognitive–behaviorism has continued to preempt humanistic and transpersonal psychology are also given. The conclusion, however, is that Seligman may be rushing to exclude on a priori grounds the very tradition his own theory represents.

Taylor, S. E., Kemeny, M. E., Reed, G. M., Bower, J. E., & Gruenewald, T. L. (2000). Psychological resources, positive illusions, and health [Special issue]. American psychologist, 55(1), 99–109. doi:10.1037/0003–066X.55.1.99. Psychological beliefs such as optimism, personal control, and a sense of meaning are known to be protective of mental health. Are they protective of physical health as well? The authors present a program of research that has tested the implications of cognitive adaptation theory and research on positive illusions for the relation of positive beliefs to disease progression among men infected with HIV. The investigations have revealed that even unrealistically optimistic beliefs about the future may be health protective. The ability to find meaning in the experience is also associated with a less rapid course of illness. Taken together, the research suggests that psychological beliefs such as meaning, control, and optimism act as resources, which may not only preserve mental health in the context of traumatic or life–threatening events but be protective of physical health as well.

Tennen, H., & Affleck, G. (2003). While accentuating the positive, don't eliminate the negative or Mr. In–between [Special issue]. Psychological Inquiry, 14(2), 163–169. doi:10.1207/S15327965PLI1402_03

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Tierney, J. (2011, May 16). A new gauge to see what's beyond happiness. The New York, NY Times. Retrieved June 30, 2011 from http://www.nytimes.com/2011/05/17/science/17tierney.html

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Trent, J., & King, L. A. (2010). Predictors of rapid versus thoughtful judgments of meaning in life. The Journal of Positive Psychology, 5(6), 439–451. doi:10.1080/17439760.2010.534106. As with other measures of subjective well–being, self–reports of meaning in life (MIL) can be influenced by transient, contextual factors. Further, the sources of information used in judging MIL can vary depending on their relevance and cognitive accessibility. This study examined the effects of differing instructions on the sources of information used to judge MIL. Participants (N = 103) completed measures of positive affect (PA), religious commitment, and the satisfaction of the needs for competency, autonomy, and relatedness and then were randomly assigned to complete a measure of MIL rapidly, thoughtfully, or using typical instructions. Results showed that condition moderated reliance on PA, autonomy and social relatedness need satisfaction: PA was a stronger predictor of MIL in the thoughtful condition while autonomy and relatedness were more strongly related to MIL in the rapid condition. Implications for our understanding of MIL and future directions are discussed.

Tweed, R. G., Bhatt, G., Dooley, S., Spindler, A., Douglas, K. S., & Viljoen, J. L. (2011). Youth violence and positive psychology: Research potential through integration. Canadian Psychology/Psychologie canadienne, 52(2)