Positive Psychology Progress: Empirical Validation of Interventions.

Positive Psychology Center, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA, USA.
American Psychologist (Impact Factor: 6.87). 07/2005; 60(5):410-21. DOI: 10.1037/0003-066X.60.5.410
Source: PubMed


Positive psychology has flourished in the last 5 years. The authors review recent developments in the field, including books, meetings, courses, and conferences. They also discuss the newly created classification of character strengths and virtues, a positive complement to the various editions of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (e. g., American Psychiatric Association, 1994), and present some cross-cultural findings that suggest a surprising ubiquity of strengths and virtues. Finally, the authors focus on psychological interventions that increase individual happiness. In a 6-group, random-assignment, placebo-controlled Internet study, the authors tested 5 purported happiness interventions and 1 plausible control exercise. They found that 3 of the interventions lastingly increased happiness and decreased depressive symptoms. Positive interventions can supplement traditional interventions that relieve suffering and may someday be the practical legacy of positive psychology.

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    • "The control group was asked to think about situations in four different contexts (i.e., within family, among friends, at school, at work in the first year after apprenticeship) where they excelled (i.e., " You at your best " ). This exercise was chosen for the control group instead of the placebo intervention reported by Seligman et al. (2005), because it had the best fit regarding the cover story (i.e., the study is aimed at comparing different strengths interventions), and it did not have lasting effects (i.e., can serve as " inert " or placebo condition within the scope of the present study). Consequently, both the intervention group and the control group focused on four different aspects within their exercises (i.e., highest character strengths or situations where they excelled) for four weeks. "
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    ABSTRACT: Cross-sectional research indicated that the application of signature strengths at work seemed to be crucial for perceiving a job as a calling. The present study aimed at testing this assumed causality in a random-assignment, placebo-controlled web-based intervention study. The intervention group (n = 83) was instructed to use their four highest character strengths more often at work for four weeks. Meanwhile the control group (n = 69) reflected about four situations (independent from the current workplace) where they excelled. For the evaluation of the effects of the two conditions, participants completed measures on calling and global life satisfaction before (Pretest), directly after the four-week training period (Posttest 1), and three (Posttest 2) and six months (Posttest 3) later. Calling significantly increased in the intervention group but not in the control group from Pretest to Posttest 1, and remained constant until Posttest 3. Global life satisfaction significantly increased in the intervention group but not in the control group from Pretest to Posttest 2 and from Posttest 1 to Posttest 3. That indicated that the changes on global life satisfaction were less steep than the changes in calling and lagged, but significant long lasting changes were observed likewise. Results supported the assumption that the application of strengths at work impacts calling and life satisfaction. Limitations as well as implications for research and practice are discussed.
    Journal of Happiness Studies 11/2015; DOI:10.1007/s10902-015-9692-y · 1.88 Impact Factor
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    • "Positive priming sets up the mood and tone of the lesson which will follow. The WWW technique, which was first published by Seligman et al. (2005) and is now well-validated scientifically, asks people to focus on positive aspects of a situation. This technique has been significantly linked to well-being in adults (Seligman et al. 2005; Sin and Lyubomirsky 2009). "
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    ABSTRACT: This practice paper explores the intersection of school studio-music pedagogy and positive psychology in order to enhance students' learning and engagement. The paper has a practitioner focus and puts forward a new model of studio teaching, the Positive Instruction in Music Studios (PIMS) model that guides teachers through four key positive psychology processes that can be used in a music lesson: positive priming, strengths spotting, positive pause, and process praise. The model provides a new, positively oriented approach to studio-music pedagogy that can be integrated into specific methods-based programs to enhance student learning and engagement.
    11/2015; 5(1):10. DOI:10.1186/s13612-015-0036-9
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    • "Knowing that perceived strengths use support may lead to higher levels of strengths use is important , espe - cially since there is still little knowledge about the effec - tiveness of positive psychology interventions in organizational settings that aim to increase the level of strengths use ( Meyers , Van Woerkom , & Bakker , 2013 ) . There is some literature based on clinical samples ( Duckworth , Steen , & Seligman , 2005 ) to suggest that strengths use can be stimulated with short - term interven - tions , such as having participants take a strengths test , providing them with feedback about their strengths , and asking them to use different strengths in new ways every day for 1 week . Although these short - term interventions may give an immediate boost to individual strengths use , it is possible that this effect may fade over time ( Duckworth et al . "
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    ABSTRACT: The present study among 65 civil engineers investigates the impact of organizational support for strengths use on weekly work engagement and proactive behaviour. Positive psychology postulates that strengths use makes people feel authentic and efficacious. We argue that employees use these positive psychological states as resources that fuel work engagement and proactive work behaviour. Participants completed a general questionnaire regarding strengths use support, and a weekly quantitative diary questionnaire regarding their strengths use, self-efficacy, work engagement, and proactive behaviour over a period of five consecutive workweeks. In line with the hypotheses, the results of multilevel structural equation analyses showed that organizational strengths use support was positively related to weekly strengths use. Furthermore, the results indicated that weekly strengths use was positively related to weekly work engagement and proactive behaviour, through weekly self-efficacy (sequential mediation). Although strengths use support contributed indirectly to work engagement (mediated by strengths use and self-efficacy), there was no significant indirect relationship with proactive behaviour. Our study indicates that strengths use is associated with employees’ levels of self-efficacy, work engagement, and proactive behaviour and that organizations can help employees to use their strengths more often by giving them the opportunity to do what they are good at. http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/1359432X.2015.1089862#.VgpAUTYVj-s
    European Journal of Work and Organizational Psychology 10/2015; DOI:10.1080/1359432X.2015.1089862 · 2.09 Impact Factor
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