Articles by Prakriti Tandon
Within the first five minutes of walking into graphic designer Stefan Sagmeister’s exhibit, “The Happy Show,” at the Institute of Contemporary Art in Philadelphia, I found myself being instructed to drop a quarter into a machine whose destination seemed to be smack in the middle of the sidewalk outside (and conferred no immediate gratification to do so: no gumball, no decoder ring, no stuffed toy to reward the action). On blind faith and curiosity, I did so.
My mother was the victim of an armed robbery. Revisiting this trauma reminds her (in her words) “to hold them in the light.” How is my mother able not just to allay her anger and to practice forgiveness, but actually to desire the elevation of her aggressors?
As I pondered the topic for this article, I intended to focus on the purely euphoric experience of surfing, and the myriad ways in which it fulfilled a Positive Psychology purpose for me: flow, positive affect, flourishing through physical activity, and more. Just as positive psychology seeks not to reject the notion that life has its dark spaces, but to place more emphasis on the light spaces, I would not be telling the full story if I didn’t divulge an intense craving for what I felt out there on the water, and the truth of how I was contemplating very seriously moving to Hawaii and living out my days in a bikini.
Prakriti (“Paki”) Tandon, MAPP ’10, came back to her Alma Mater, the University of Pennsylvania, for her Masters in Applied Positive Psychology after several years in the Media/Television space. Most recently, she was an …