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You can easily see how a pastime like fishing can become much more than a way to relax and unwind at the end of a busy week. Sitting on the riverbank with a rod and box of bait for days at a time will eventually lead you to become fairly knowledgeable about fish and fishing, but it’s only by pushing yourself out of your comfort zone and into new realms that you’ll develop deep expertise.
Living authentically comes naturally to those with the signature strength of Integrity, Honesty, and Authenticity. For others, more thought and action may be required to ramp up authenticity levels. Here are three evidence-driven approaches to consider, along with three ways authenticity benefit us in addition to increasing well-being.
When temperatures drop with the coming of autumn, I love wrapping up in my most comfortably warm wool sweaters. A favorite is my fine gauge taupe cardigan with the gold buttons. It looks, smells and feels like genuine wool down to its smallest visible fibers. What can we say about ourselves that is true in every fiber of our being?
Have you ever wished you had a list of researchers in all corners of the positive psychology field with links to their websites where you could find papers and descriptions of research topics?
We intuitively know that when we sleep poorly, we are drawn to snacking and overeating. We also know that nothing gets rid of a crappy mood faster than a good sweat and that lower stress levels contribute to a better night’s sleep. So why are so many programs treating sleep, food, mood, and exercise as if they were separate topics?
Some people might be scared by a thunderstorm while others might be awed. In those moments, the person with the strength of Appreciation of Beauty and Excellence is able to transcend ego and instead be moved to an awareness of the vastness and amazement that the world has to offer. Time slows down. In such moments a person may feel drawn to future opportunities for using this strength.
Technology isn’t simply a conduit for spreading positive psychology. It will be one force that reshapes and augments our very notions of human experience and of well-being itself. We cannot afford to be technological bystanders if we want to bring about Seligman’s aim that 51% of the human population flourishes by 2051.
Tim Kasser made the point that materialism and well-being tend to be related to each other like two riders on a seesaw. When one goes up, the other goes down. This has implications for both individuals and society.
It may be easier to advocate for positive psychology when life is on an upward slope, but for me, it has been the tough times that have truly shown me the value of the science. In July less than 24 hours after facilitating the Penn Resilience Program I got a phone call which would plunge me into a test of my own resilience.
The character strength of zest can be an important barometer for how you’re doing at work and in life. Companies and individuals would be wise to pay more attention to it.