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Lunch-time was often a struggle for my mental capacities. Rarely did a day go by when my vibrant nine-year old, just back from school, failed to enlighten us with long and winding tales of girly social interactions. Rarely did I manage to follow them all the way through. In fact, I usually lost the story line somewhere in Act One….
For followers of positive psychology, two relevant Coursera courses started this week:
- Barbara Fredrickson’s course, Positive Psychology (February 9 – March 26)
- Stuart Friedman’s course, Better Leader, Richer Life (February 8 – April 23)
Read about these courses and click through to register.
I guess it is the nature of parenthood to find your children ungrateful. Or at least not as grateful as they could be, should be or used to be. This feeling really hit me hard when my twins entered their teenage years. Then I realized how easily I had erased the memories of my little pigeons helplessly hooked up in their incubators, how conveniently I had become ungrateful to the forces that had listened to my desperate pleas for the life and health of my little babies.
I want to add to Lisa’s review of the book Focus by discussing prevention and promotion focus. Both kinds of focus can sometimes work together. For example, with the goal to exercise more, promotion-focus gives people enthusiasm for the gain of better fitness, and prevention-focus keeps them vigilant in the long term to avoid losing the fitness they built up.
Alexander the Great looked at the philosopher sitting there, impoverished, rags over the rib-thin body, and asked what he was doing. “I am experiencing nothingness,” said the philosopher. “What are you doing?” “I am conquering the world,” responded Alexander, and they both laughed. Each thought the other was a fool.
Master communicators can garner early attention to new science and simplify messaging in ways that appeal to larger non-expert audiences. I credit Arianna Huffington for helping positive psychology principles into mainstream conversation and popularizing many research findings.
Although life may simply be a meaningless ride that we try and cloak with a fulfilling purpose, humor allows us to laugh at the insignificance of most things in the vast flow of human experience and yet connect to what we find truly important.
I interviewed positive psychology pioneer Barbara Fredrickson on her views of psychology as a science, why it’s important to study positive psychology, what are her favorite topics to study, and what are her primary sources of positive emotion.
The world needs peace right now. The world needs you to increase your mindfulness. So, thank you for practicing and building your mindfulness muscle. When the alarm goes off tomorrow morning, take a slow and low cleansing breath and remember to express gratitude for another day to be alive.
Since a quick look at my bio reveals that I earned the first doctorate in positive psychology back in 2010, I know you are expecting a resounding yes to the question. I’d love to give that answer, but it’s not that simple. Let’s explore some questions about it.