Positive Psychology- The Science of Wellbeing + Free worksheet

What is Well-being? 

Health, pleasure, and prosperity are the experiences that makeup well-being. It entails having a positive outlook on life, feeling content with it, finding meaning or purpose in it, and being able to handle stress. In a broader sense, being well simply means feeling well. Being happy, healthy, socially engaged, and having a purpose are just a few of the many good aspects of well-being that almost everyone seeks.

While there isn’t a universally accepted definition of what constitutes well-being, it is generally acknowledged that it at the very least includes the presence of positive emotions and moods (such as contentment and happiness), the absence of negative emotions (such as depression and anxiety), satisfaction with one’s life, fulfillment, and positive functioning. According to the American Psychological Association, well-being is characterized as a state of happiness and satisfaction, low levels of discomfort, a generally positive attitude toward one’s physical and mental health, or high quality of life.

Simple definitions of well-being include having a positive outlook on life and feeling happy.

Where Does Well-Being Come From?

Your ideas, deeds, and experiences—most of which you have control over—are what lead to your sense of well-being.

For instance, we often experience more emotional well-being when we think favorably. We often experience greater social well-being when we pursue meaningful relationships. Additionally, we frequently experience decreased workplace well-being when we leave our jobs or just despise them. These instances begin to demonstrate the breadth of well-being and the variety of well-being that exist.

Types of Wellbeing

There are 5 major types of well-being: 

Emotional Well-Being

The ability to practice stress management and relaxation techniques, be resilient, boost self-love, and generate the emotions that lead to good feelings.

Physical Well-Being

The ability to improve the functioning of your body through healthy living and good exercise habits.

Social Well-Being

The ability to communicate, develop meaningful relationships with others, and maintain a support network that helps you overcome loneliness.

Workplace Well-Being

The ability to pursue your interests, values, and life purpose in order to gain meaning, happiness, and enrichment professionally.

Societal Well-Being

The ability to actively participate in a thriving community, culture, and environment.

What is Positive Psychology?

The study of personality characteristics and actions that help individuals flourish rather than merely survive is the focus of the psychology subfield known as positive psychology. Intellectuals and theorists have tried to enumerate the components of a happy life. Additionally, they have developed and tested methods for improving general happiness and well-being.

The three levels of positive psychology

  • Subjective level: focuses on feelings of happiness, well-being, and optimism, as well as how these sentiments influence your everyday life.
  • Individual level: a collection of subjective sentiments and values such as forgiveness, love, and courage.
  • Group level: Positive engagement with your society, including values such as generosity and social responsibility that create social bonds at the group level

Know more about positive psychology by watching our video.

The Central Focus of Positive Psychology

Positive psychology focuses on the positive events and influences in life, including:

  1. Positive experiences (like happiness, joy, inspiration, and love).
  2. Positive states and traits (like gratitude, resilience, and compassion).
  3. Positive institutions (applying positive principles within entire organizations and institutions).

Positive psychology covers a wide range of subjects, including character traits, optimism, life satisfaction, happiness, well-being, gratitude, compassion (including self-compassion), self-esteem and self-confidence, hope, and elevation. To learn how to support individuals in thriving and leading their best lives, these subjects are researched. Positive psychology covers a wide range of subjects, including character traits, optimism, life satisfaction, happiness, well-being, gratitude, compassion (including self-compassion), self-esteem and self-confidence, hope, and elevation. To learn how to support individuals in thriving and leading their best lives, these subjects are researched.

Key Concepts in Positive Psychology (other than Well-being)

  1. Flourishing

Flourishing is an important concept in positive psychology since it encompasses and extends to so many other good ideas. In a word, “flourishing” is the state we are in when we pay attention to all aspects of the PERMA model and acquire a strong sense of well-being.

We flourish when we expand our talents and capabilities, build deep and important connections, enjoy pleasure and satisfaction, and make a substantial contribution to the world. When we live the “good life,” we thrive when we find fulfillment in life while still achieving more traditional success goals.

  1. Flow

Flow is another well-known idea in positive psychology that, in a nutshell, focuses on well-being. Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi was the first to do scientific research on and explain the concept of flow. Csikszentmihalyi noticed that many artists in the latter decades of the twentieth century slipped into a state characterized by exceptionally intense attention and great focus on the task at hand, to the point of losing track of time for hours at a time. Professional athletes, singers, novelists, and others in artistic and creative fields have all experienced immersing themselves in their work in similar ways.

He found six elements that describe a flow experience as he gathered more reports of this phenomenon:

  • Intense and concentrated concentration on the present time;
  • The combination of action and consciousness, or being fully present in your activities;
  • A lack of self-awareness (a loss of reflective self-consciousness);
  • A sensation of personal involvement or control over the event;
  • A distorted sense of time;
  • Having a naturally pleasurable experience with the action or event

Know about core positive attitude, another key concept under positive psychology by watching our video

Want to know more about Positive psychology counseling for mental health? Enroll in our course now.

How are Well-being and Positive Psychology Related?

Positive Psychology is helping to define the contours of human well-being and is completely encompassing studies on positive components (strengths and positive emotions). Positive psychology techniques have a positive influence on people’s daily lives by lowering stress and anxiety, improving resilience, and encouraging self-growth, wellness, and quality of life. 

Positive psychology developed scales such as the Psychological Wellbeing Scale and the Happiness Scale to objectively quantify a person’s internal satisfaction. With the introduction of these psychological well-being indicators, mental health providers now have a valid basis to change their attention from problems to solutions. 

In simpler terms, it can be concluded that well-being is a key concept of positive psychology and most of the theories and models of positive psychology revolves around improving well-being.

Positive psychology encourages you to practice happiness, and understand how you can do so by watching our video.

Well-being Therapy 

Well-being Therapy is a fantastic example of positive psychology in action in the profession of counseling.

Well-being Therapy is a short, organized, prescriptive, and problem-oriented treatment program based on Ryff’s (1989) concept of psychological well-being. Clients are educated on the six elements of therapy: environmental mastery, personal growth, life purpose, autonomy, self-acceptance, and constructive interpersonal interactions. Clients are assisted to develop from low to high levels of functioning in each area by identifying their recent and prior experiences with well-being, no matter how transient they may have been.

To raise clients’ awareness of moments of well-being and assist them in detecting unconstructive attitudes and beliefs that the therapist addresses through cognitive techniques while promoting activities.

Read Blog: The positive psychology model that can be used in psychological counseling by clicking here.

The PERMA Model- A Model That Binds Positive Psychology And Well-being Together

To better describe and define happiness, which is a key goal of positive psychology. This theory presents five basic building blocks, each with ways for increasing that specific area for overall pleasure and living a healthy life. All blocks should be sought for their own sake rather than as a means to an end, and they are all defined independently of one another.

Seligman devised an acronym (PERMA) to describe his well-being hypothesis after working through early theories:

Positive Emotions — such as satisfaction, awe, excitement, pride, and others typically translate to positive outcomes in other aspects of life. Positive emotions give us hope for a positive future.

Engagement — such as with activities that put us in “flow,” where we find ourselves passionate for and heavily concentrated on a task at hand. When we are really engaged, nothing else matters and we can lose a sense of the negative realities around us.

Relationships — through bad times a good times, help us strengthen positive emotions. And, many positive emotions are experienced in groups. Even introverted people need relationships, as they are fundamental to one’s well-being.

Meaning — or purpose, gives us drive. Meaning gives us context to why we may be engaging with our lives the way we do, through work, school, community, or any other aspect of life.

Accomplishments — which can be work-based, hobby-based, community-based, etc. Having a sense of accomplishment gives us pride and positive emotions.

These aspects of well-being are pursued for their own sake as an aim in itself.

Read Blog: A comprehensive overview of positive psychology.

The Benefits of Positive Psychology and Well-Being

The goal of positive psychology is to improve one’s well-being. Positive well-being not only helps us feel good, but these positive feelings can translate to other benefits.

Benefits of well-being include:

  • Improved performance at work, school, and with hobbies
  • Improved satisfaction with relationships
  • Improved psychical health and stronger immune system
  • Improved cardiovascular health and longer life expectancy
  • Improved sleep
  • Improved emotional self-regulation
  • Improved social ability
  • Decreased depression and anxiety

Positive psychology also talks about the 3 steps psychological model. Know more about 3 steps psychological model of self-growth by watching our video.

Tips Based on Positive Psychology For Improved Well-being

  1.  Find and Practice New Hobbies

Our hobbies keep us occupied and interested. You take positive efforts to enhance your emotional wellness when you are interested in and like performing certain things. It also relieves your brain of the stress of daily life and job. Developing new interests is a terrific way to improve mental and emotional health.

  1. Practice Gratitude

Gratitude is one of the most well-liked positive psychology techniques for good reason. Daily thanksgiving practitioners claim to feel more alive, sleep better, show more compassion and charity, and even have more robust immune systems. We’ve all heard of keeping a gratitude journal or developing a daily practice of listing several things for which we are grateful.

Here are a few techniques for expressing gratitude:

  • Send thank-you notes or letters.

Writing thank you letters is a wonderful way to show appreciation. It’s a kind gesture to thank individuals for what they provide to your life, and people appreciate opening them.

  • Consider every day a gift.

Being alive and having the option to make the most of each day and all of life’s joys makes each day we wake up a blessing.

  • Keep an appreciation notebook.

We may focus on all that we have in life rather than all that we lack by keeping a gratitude journal. Writing down our thoughts may be entertaining and enlightening. You could choose to invest in a diary or save your entries in a virtual record of thanks.

  1. Measure Your Strengths and Virtues

An excellent method to explore yourself, learn more about yourself, and consider what inspires you is to assess your virtues and talents.

Seligman and Chris Peterson researched virtues from the main faiths and civilizations in order to organize them into a positive psychology-friendly classification scheme. Six types of virtues and 24 character strengths were the end product.

Character Strengths and Virtues is a ground-breaking classification of highly regarded positive traits. The researchers looked into all major religions and intellectual traditions and found that all civilizations valued the same six traits.

Since these virtues (such as compassion, courage, knowledge, and others) required empirical investigation, researchers focused on the personality traits that contribute to those virtues. They developed measurement tools as a result.

In order to grow and sustain their levels of well-being, people and organizations can benefit from positive psychology’s use of a number of tactics to help them recognize and capitalize on their strengths.

The process of developing one’s strengths entails self-reflection, self-awareness, and introspection.

To properly understand one’s own talents, one must look within. This method is a fantastic means of increasing self-awareness.

  1. Connect with people

Your mental health depends on the quality of your connections. People can:

  • assist you in developing a feeling of identity and value
  • provide you a chance to share beneficial experiences
  • bolster your mental well-being and enable you to help others

You might attempt a variety of different things to foster more solid and intimate connections. Most of them are not:

  • Spend time with your family every day.
  • Plan a day trip with your pals.
  • To engage in conversation or a game with your kids, friends, or family, try turning off the TV.
  • eat lunch with a coworker
  • Pay a visit to a friend or relative.
  • Volunteer in a nearby hospital, school, or community organization.
  • utilize technology to the fullest to keep in touch with friends and family.
  1. Practice Humor. 

There’s a reason why films with smiling babies and dogs in pajamas are so well-liked: they immediately shift our focus to something joyful, encouraging, and uplifted. Everyone has heard that the best medicine is laughing.

According to research, laughter also lessens discomfort physically, improves mood, lessens stress, and increases resilience.

  1. Mindfulness Meditation

Your well-being may increase if you focus more on the here and now. This encompasses your body, your thoughts, and feelings, as well as the environment. This awareness is sometimes referred to as “mindfulness.” You may have more fun in life and learn more about yourself by practicing mindfulness. It may alter your perspective on life and how you respond to difficulties for the better. It involves being aware of our thoughts and emotions while staying tolerant and nonjudgmental. It simply means that we are present and conscious of how we genuinely feel rather than concentrating on what we ought to be feeling or going through. It is more about being aware of our current experience than trying to change anything. Numerous studies have shown that mindfulness meditation is one of the most potent and successful methods for enhancing psychological well-being.

The following advantages of mindfulness have been identified, according to studies by the American Psychological Association:

  • Reduced rumination
  • Stress reduction
  • Improvements in working memory
  • Improved capacity to focus
  • Less emotional reactivity
  • Greater cognitive flexibility
  • Relationship satisfaction
  1. Visualize success

Another method for keeping motivation and a positive mindset is to picture oneself doing differently. This encourages the development of a success-focused mental picture, which increases confidence and encourages optimistic or positive thinking. Sit in a quiet spot, then relax your body and close your eyes. Imagine completing your main job task effectively or giving your presentation with assurance. Be mindful of every small detail, including your voice, posture, and self-talk. Visualization exercises help people unwind mentally and physically. They provide a state of tranquility and well-being that may enhance focus and self-assurance while lowering tension and anxiety.

If you have problems envisioning success or just want to try something different, you might visualize a desired mental state, such as relaxation, contentment, or peace of mind. Imagine you are in a comfortable, delightful setting where you feel the ideal mood. Imagine yourself here using your imagination and all of your senses. Pay attention to the chirping of the birds, the aroma of the wildflowers, the cold air on your back, and the way the sun reflects off the still stream as you wander through a serene woodland. Observe how you breathe more deeply, your muscles loosen up, and you feel a deep sense of contentment. This style of guided visualization is comparable to giving your mind a quick getaway.

  1. Remember, There Is No Magic About Building Well-Being

Keep in mind that developing new skill sets, including those related to well-being, requires time and effort. It’s crucial, to be honest with yourself about how much you can actually get done in a certain period of time. Unrealistic expectations might cause you to quit before achieving your wellness objectives. Therefore, it’s essential to develop a realistic strategy for your well-being, adhere to it, and implement tiny changes each day that, over time, result in significant advancements.

Read Blog: How positive psychology can be applied in counseling and therapy settings.

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