In brief, Positive Psychology talks about moving through three stages. The first encourages you to amplify and enjoy the small pleasures of life. From there you move in to an engaged existence, 'flow' as its known. This is about re-crafting your life (work, love, play) so that you're doing things that create the right environment for you and your development. In time, the idea is that you grow to achieve a meaningful life where you feel you're using your signature, and therefore unique strengths, for a purpose larger than you e.g. your community, home, friends etc. This stage lends itself to longer lasting well-being.
Positive psychology tips
At this workshop a couple of exercises were suggested as ways to develop through these stages. Have a go and see what you think:
This hashtag has long been trending on Twitter. Of course you don't need to be on Twitter to do this though. To raise your awareness and amplify your pleasures (stage 1 above) the idea is that for a prolonged period time you document three good things about your day. Most do this at night and keep a notebook beside their bed to note them down. You'll start to realise how much good stuff goes on during your day.
2) The Gratitude Visit
Think of the one person who has had a positive impact on you and your life that you'd like to sincerely thank. Make an effort to visit them for the sole purpose of thanking them. Maybe you'd like to script out what you want to say or write to them instead and post it. You might like some support afterwards in that part of the process is to reflect on how you feel after you’ve thanked them, understanding the relationship more and recognising the altruistic element of the exercise.
3) Positive Language
Use 'and' instead of 'but'. See how it develops a different conversation, changing the way you describe and articulate events to create a more positive environment. Try and avoid 'I should' too. Use I 'want/choose to' instead. Much more empowering.
4) Seek out your 3rd place
We all have two places we occupy regularly, mainly work and home. Your 3rd place is where you can be your best self, free from judgement and pressure (including your own). Take note to explore and sit in this 3rd place and experience yourself differently.
5) Positive Energy Network
Surround yourself with people you know who create natural energy, at work and in your home life. Spend less time with those that drain it.
6) Social Connectivity
Allow yourself to be geeky and immerse yourself in things that you thoroughly enjoy. It might not be everyone's cup of tea but who cares; you love it so get out there and do more of it.
7) High Quality Connections
Recognise when people need time to talk and give them the time they need to talk. Make things happen for someone by virtue of just being you.
8) Bad Things Happen
Accept that bad things happen. But its OK. Its not the end of the world. Know that you will get back on track at a later date when you're ready, just like last time. Recognise that it won't be forever.
So, there you go. Keep it positive.
Feeling overwhelmed with decisions about what to do next in my career, Alice really helped me to create a plan and move forward with brilliant practical advice and guidance.