What Is Positive Psychology?

Positive psychology is the study of happiness. Psychology has traditionally focused on dysfunction—people with mental illness or other issues—and how to treat it. Positive psychology, in contrast, is a field that examines how ordinary people can become happier and more fulfilled.

Recent posts on Positive Psychology

How Does Culture Affect Our Happiness?

Culture shapes what happiness means to us and how we pursue it.

What Opera Legend Andre Bocelli Taught Me About Peace

What did world renowned opera singer Andre Bocelli teach me about inner peace?

How Depression Can Move On

The new coming out is coming out about struggles with depression. Here, Judy realizes that depression can lead to empathy, past trauma, & even make you funnier.. Read on

The Next Eastern Therapy

By Andy Tix Ph.D. on May 23, 2016 in The Pursuit of Peace
In need of inspiration and rejuvenation? "Forest bathing" may be the remedy.

Evolutionary Psychology Goes Just Fine with Religion

There is no need for religion and evolutionary psychology to be in conflict. Here's why.

Are You Full to the Rim?

By Rick Hanson Ph.D. on May 23, 2016 in Your Wise Brain
Enjoy emptiness in the forms that speak to you, such as, the space between thoughts as your mind calms and becomes still, or a Saturday with no plans at all.

Compassion Can Help Us Cross Political Boundaries

When compassion strikes, we want to put an end to misery, even if it means tossing our own needs aside.

The Evolutionary Psychology of Humility

Stewardship is broadly valued in others - just as selfishness is broadly repulsed. Here’s why.

Manifest Joy

By Bernard L. De Koven on May 17, 2016 in On Having Fun
Joy substantiates something profoundly spiritual. Something in life that validates living itself.

What Is Living You?

By Rick Hanson Ph.D. on May 17, 2016 in Your Wise Brain
You and I are constructed each moment by the currents - the forces and factors, both internal and external - flowing through us. Choose to give ourselves over to the good ones.

Spatial Talent Could Help Fill “Middle Skill" Jobs

Employers complain that electricians, pipe fitters, advanced manufacturing machinists, brick masons and radiology technicians are scarce. Spatial talent could help fill these jobs.
Lunamarina/CANVA

Is Positivity Dangerous for Us?

How trying to be positive all the time can prevent us accepting the range of emotions we experience and living an authentic happy life.

Globalizing Positive Psychology

Instead of researching well-being through culturally skewed self-reporting tools, let's focus on how our brain chemicals (dopamine, serotonin, oxytocin, endorphin) work in animals.

Does Happiness Really Come From Within?

By Bella DePaulo Ph.D. on May 13, 2016 in Living Single
What's wrong with believing that happiness comes from within?
VIA Institute/DepositPhotos

Why Grit Is Not the Answer

Is "grit" a virtue?
Pressmaster/Canva

Can You Bring Out the Strengths in Others?

Have you ever tried to motivate someone to realize their potential at work? Engage and energize your staff by discovering what’s strong, rather than just what’s wrong.

What Matters Most to You?

By Rick Hanson Ph.D. on May 09, 2016 in Your Wise Brain
You'll never know when you step over the invisible line and the countdown begins but you can know, before and after you cross it, that you've remembered the big things.

The Practice of Life

Shakespeare was wrong. The world is not a stage and life is not a performance. Life is practice.

Mothers Are Altruists Sine Qua Non

Mothering is, by far and away, the most common form of prosocial behavior in our species. Here’s why.

Measuring Success in the Game of Life

By Po Chi Wu Ph.D. on May 08, 2016 in Jacob's Staff
What happens to society when we create games that define losers? Reimagine the rules of life so that each of us can define our own success without comparing with others.

Taming the Tweet: Why Trump´s Sound Bites Are Headlines

Candidate backgrounds influence their language, personality, and electability. From the courtroom to the boardroom... to the locker room.

Your Worst Enemy

We make our own misery. Life is hard enough, but we make things worse by exaggerating our failings and piling up proof of our deficiencies.

5 Personal Traits That Predict Long-Term Weight Loss Success

By Susan McQuillan M.S., RDN on May 05, 2016 in Cravings
Do you have what it takes to maintain a healthy weight? Here's the checklist for success.

Retirement—Dealing With Uncertainty and Fear

If you are like most people, you find comfort in a certain level of stability and routine. Retirement can be a source of great anxiety and uncertainty.

I Order You to Stop Following Orders!

By Guy P. Harrison on May 03, 2016 in About Thinking
We all have a natural weakness for authority figures. To be safer, question everything and think twice before following orders.

When Safe Spaces Become Danger Zones

The most important psychological characteristics for becoming a good citizen and mature adult are not forged in safe spaces.

Waiting for the Other Shoe to Drop

Waiting for the other shoe to drop. Recognizing this tendency in early recollections of life and addressing ways to curb the downward shift.

4 Stunning Things Thank-Yous Do for a Partnership

This one "booster shot" helps partners stay happier & more satisfied, stay together longer, and protects from the negative effects of arguments. So why is it so hard to keep up?

Mindsets

A mindset is a belief that orients the way we handle situations. Our mindsets help us spot opportunities but they can trap us in self-defeating cycles.