Positive Psychology

What is positive psychology?

Positive psychology is a ‘strength-based’ branch of psychology that focuses on promoting well-being and happiness by emphasising positive emotions, strengths, and virtues.  It aims to help individuals flourish and lead fulfilling lives by focusing on their positive qualities and experiences.

When is positive psychology used in therapy?

Positive psychology is used when individuals want to enhance their overall well-being, increase their happiness, and improve their quality of life.  It can be beneficial for people experiencing various challenges, such as depression, anxiety, stress, or a general desire to enhance their personal growth and happiness.

Positive psychology does not deny or devalue negative experiences, but rather widens the scope of psychology to capture the ‘full range of human experience’ (Hart 2021).

What can you expect in positive psychology therapy sessions?

In positive psychology therapy sessions, you will work closely with your psychologist who will help you explore and cultivate your positive qualities and experiences. Your psychologist will encourage you to identify and utilise your strengths, such as resilience, gratitude, optimism, or kindness, to overcome challenges and enhance well-being.

During sessions, your psychologist may engage in conversations about positive experiences, values, and goals.  They may also introduce exercises and activities to help you develop positive habits, increase self-awareness, and foster positive emotions. 

Throughout the therapy process, your psychologist will provide support, guidance, and encouragement.  They will help you develop strategies to navigate challenges, build resilience, and foster positive relationships.  The ultimate goal of positive psychology is to help you cultivate positive emotions, enhance your well-being, and lead a more meaningful and satisfying life.

Remember, therapy is personalised to your unique needs and experiences. Your psychologist will adapt the approach to ensure it is respectful, empowering, and supportive of your therapeutic journey.

Reference: Hart R (2021) Positive Psychology : The Basics, Routledge, London and New York

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