What is Positive psychology?
Positive psychology is a branch of psychology that focuses on the study of human well-being, flourishing, and optimal functioning. It is concerned with understanding and promoting positive aspects of human experience, such as happiness, fulfillment, resilience, gratitude, and personal strengths.
Positive psychology emerged in the late 1990s as a response to the prevailing emphasis on pathology and mental illness within psychology. Instead of primarily focusing on psychological disorders and their treatment, positive psychology seeks to identify the factors that contribute to a meaningful and fulfilling life.
The field of positive psychology explores various topics and constructs, including positive emotions, positive character traits, positive relationships, positive institutions, and the cultivation of personal strengths. It aims to enhance individuals’ quality of life and overall well-being by studying and promoting the factors that lead to positive mental health and optimal functioning.
Positive psychologists often conduct research to better understand the factors that contribute to happiness and well-being. They also develop interventions and strategies to help individuals cultivate positive emotions, foster healthy relationships, build resilience, discover and utilize their strengths, and find meaning and purpose in life.
Positive psychology is not about dismissing or ignoring negative experiences or emotions. Rather, it acknowledges the importance of addressing and understanding the challenges individuals face while also emphasizing the potential for growth, happiness, and well-being. By focusing on positive aspects of human psychology, positive psychology offers a balanced and comprehensive approach to understanding human flourishing.
Shervan K Shahhian