Motivation and emotion/Tutorials/Positive psychology
Tutorial 11: Positive psychology
This tutorial is complete for 2021.
Overview[edit | edit source]
This tutorial is about positive psychology, self-actualisation, and happiness.
Assumptions[edit | edit source]
To what extent do you agree with the underlying assumptions of positive psychology? Not sure? Consider these questions :
- Do you think that "evil" (or anti-social) behaviour is:
- inherent in human nature?
- a product of a sick culture?
- How does learning best occur? Does it follow from:
- well-developed curricula and expert teaching?
- having one’s interests identified, facilitated, and supported?
- Does psychological therapy work best by:
- fixing what is broken?
- nurturing what is best?
- Which answers correspond to positive psychology paradigms? (the 2nd answer in each case)
Self-actualisation[edit | edit source]
- Self-actualising is the process of fulfilling your potential.
- Complete this Self-evaluation of self-actualisation (Google Form).
- After submitting, click "See previous responses" to see graphs of class responses.
- Review your answers and highlight:
- What are you doing that is particularly well that is helping you towards self-actualisation?
- What could you improve to better promote growth towards self-actualisation?
Happiness[edit | edit source]
Since the development of positive psychology in 1990s, there has been a significant focus on psychological research and understanding of happiness.
- Martin Seligman suggests three components of happiness which he calls the:
- Pleasant life: Dealing with the past, optimism about the future, happiness in the present (hedonic pleasure and the skills to amplify pleasure). However, this form of happiness is limited by being short-lived, subject to the hedonic treadmill, and heritable.
- Good life: or Eudaimonia; Engagement (flow, absorption)
- Meaningful life: Connection to a higher purpose)
- Dan Gilbert suggests two components of happiness: (The surprising science of happiness (Dan Gilbert, 2004, 21:20, TED talk) - see also: Ten years later: Dan Gilbert):
- Natural happiness: What we feel when we get what we want
- Synthetic happiness: What we feel when we learn to like what we get
Take-away message: The science of happiness is counter-intuitive - people are subject to many biases, including the impact bias which means that we overestimate the hedonic impact of good and bad events, and which thereby undermines our decision-making about how to be happy.
Recording[edit | edit source]
- Tutorial 11 recording, 2021
See also[edit | edit source]
- Additional tutorial material
- Instructor notes
- Problems for discussion
- Fully functioning person
- Happiness - Practical exercises
- Meaning and coherence
- Optimal human functioning
- Book chapters
- Impact bias (2021)
- Peak experiences and emotion (2019)
- PERMA model of well-being (2020)
- Self-actualisation and motivation (2020)
- Subjective well-being (2020)
- Synthetic happiness (2017)
- Lectures and tutorials
- Growth motivation and positive psychology (Lecture)
- Time perspective (Previous tutorial)
- Review (Next tutorial)
References[edit | edit source]
Gilbert, D. (2009). Stumbling on happiness. Vintage.