Tag Archives: Social Sciences

Taking happiness seriously

The Year started with hope, as it always does, and optimism.  We will be writing exciting stories in these new, empty days to come. On the surface another day, another night, deep inside, a new beginning. Why? welcome to the world of positive psychology.

A term coined by Seligman and Csikszentmihalyi as a “science of positive subjective experience, positive individual traits, and positive institutions.”

Seligman had already become famous for his work on learned helplessness or “how do we act when we think our actions don’t matter.”  Lucky for all of us, he considered it as a ‘learned’ behavior, as opposed to an intuitive or innate behavior (full disclosure, I’ve never taken a course on psychology in my life).

Csikszentmihalyi in turn was famous for his work on “the flow,”  a condition when

Happiness mind-map

Happiness mind-map (Photo credit: EEPaul)

we are so immersed in our work that time looses its meaning.

Seligman went on to create the foundations of happiness: PERMA.

  • Positive Emotion (including the common notion of happiness)
  • Engagement or Flow
  • Positive Relationships
  • Meaning and Purpose
  • Accomplishment

by the way, these were the same principles we used to create the first crowd written book on happiness. The authors contributed with written words… but many thinkers around the world wrote to us thanking us for bringing out a sense of awareness that happiness was worthy of thoughts. We still receive messages about it. We are taking happiness seriously…  because we know that any second of happiness has a long lasting impact on each individual and a powerful rippling effect in others – it just doesn’t reach the news because it does not create dramas.

Here is to a remarkable 2013.


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