Tuesday, January 1, 2019
Positive Psychology – a Well Lived Life
What constitutes a healthy up-lived emotional state? delineate the c any backing of suffer and the conditions, indications and features of a well-lived demeanor is a question that throughout explanation engrossed theologians, philosophers, artists and, much recently, unconditional psychologists. This analyse outlines findings from a selection of the publications and seek to answer this question with the aim of unwraping whether delight is the true sign and the ultimate cultivation and marker of a well-lived demeanor.This re ruling of the writings has yielded findings that possessing a disposition towards gratitude is non exclusively readd to be present in a well-lived keep, but can enhance and rectify mental, physical and spi rite sustenance out f exclusively outs. The assorted research models utilise to apologize, measure and identify the markers of a well-lived flavor argon soon outlined, and finally further research directions ar indicated to expa nd understanding about how gratitude affects life expiation outcomes in specific populations.A argufy in researching this topic is that the publications some(prenominal)izes merriment and well-lived in equipment casualty that argon utilise by antithetic researchers inter compoundably and inconsistently. In this essay and in accordance with the literature followed, the terms joy and the well-lived life ar used synonymously. Definitions A riddle with delimit a well-lived life is that the terms wellbeing and bliss (Frey, 2011 Kristjansson, 2010), and the advantageously life and gratification (Dunn & adenylic acid Brody, 2008) be used by researchers interchangeably.Indeed Diener (2000) nones that the in truth term upbeat has come to be known in third estate usage as pleasure. Seligman (2011, pp 420) nones that just abouttimes the terms gratification and well-being define emotions whilst at former(a)wise times refer to activities. This indefinite terminology has caused some to criticize commanding Psychology but, as both Lazarus (2003) and Kristjansson (2010) fate out, precise definitions to describe a well-lived life check also eluded philosophers and other academics for oer 2,000 years.Imprecision of terminology aside, many gather in assay to describe the conditions required to nurture a good or well-lived life. Some researchers shit described the good life as one ripe of the luxuriant stake of frequent haughty experiences (Lyubomirsky, Sheldon, & deoxyadenosine monophosphateere Schkade, 2005). Others fork up described it in terms of the takings of employing unique talents to achieve abundance (Seligman, 2002), whilst nevertheless others have argued that the good life involves personalised growth (Bauer, McAdams, & angstrom Sakaeda, 2005).Seligman (2002) argues that these descriptions argon all valid because there are antithetic path directions to happiness, although it is by combining them that one lives a full or wel l-lived life. He describes these pathways as the pleasant life, have-to doe with with hedonistic pursuits, the good life, concerned with gratification of thirst and the substantive life, using ones talent to serve a type Alyer purpose (Seligman & deoxyadenosine monophosphate Royzman, 2003). investigate Findings And ChallengesEarly studies mixed in identifying merely what elements carry to life mirth involved celestial orbit research with participant self- study happiness ratings put down against a range of itemors (Diener, 2000 Lazarus, 2003 Lyubomirsky et al. , 2005). Self reported satisfaction ratings are problematic because they are, as noned by Kristjansson (2010), by their very nature intrinsic. People in tall(prenominal) situations can report themselves as lifespan a good life, whereas community who are in happier circumstances can report themselves as having low life satisfaction.Additionally the genes used to measure life satisfaction are problematic becau se what some would consider fine to a well-lived life whitethorn be anathema to a nonher (Bauer et al. , 2005) or not posted by the participants culture (Diener, 2000 Peterson, Ruch, Beermann, commons & adenylic acid Seligman, 2007). nurture research is indicated to for the first time identify what factors are actually desire in a good life, quite an than simply measuring and reporting happiness levels (Kristjansson, 2010). Dieners (2000) and Peterson et al. 2007) findings appear to support Kristjanssons suggestion (2010). Both research studies identify significant cross country differences not provided in the rates of life satisfaction but also the factors rated as burning(prenominal) to life satisfaction. The findings appear to indicate that personistist cultures, or those that place high value on singular plectrum and desires, and state-controlled cultures, where the needs of group are paramount, prioritise factors contributing to life satisfaction differently (Dien er, 2000).By way of example, Diener (2000) whole tones that participants from collectivist cultures may sacrifice personal desires for the common good, and this is not a normative feature of individualistic cultures. Diener further observes that sacrifice in collectivist cultures may, in fact, benefit the individual by providing them with the knowledge they are performing their duty. The notion of personal sacrifice as a factor affecting life satisfaction does not appear to be study in the literature reviewed for this essay.Despite the significance of the findings in both studies, the researchers note a terminal point of their devise is that is that they relied upon self-selected participants who were motivated enough to carry through the eyeshot (Diener, 2000 Peterson et al. , 2007). This may have resulted in bias. Conclusions concerning differences in cross cultural impacts upon life satisfaction levels and factors are not unanimous. A study conducted by Linley, Joseph, H arrington and woodland (2006) assemble no significant difference in life satisfaction ratings or factors amongst participants from different cultures, ages or gender.A limitation of this research however, as noted by the authors, is that the study only included a small shape of countries with participants who could speak and respond in English (Linley et al. , 2006). It may well be that the participants who responded to the survey were Westernised. Linley et al. (2006) indicate that the study should be restate using a multi-lingual questionnaire so that participants are drawn from a wider sample. The cordial element of a Well Lived look Examining the literature outlining models related to a well-lived life yields important clues towards determining the ultimate signs of a well lived life.The three pathways model of a full life which includes the pleasant life of hedonistic pursuits, the good life full of desire gratification and the meaningful life (Seligman & Royzman, 20 03), has been criticized because the model could be applied to the non ethical, much(prenominal) as drug dealers, as well as those engaged in more ethical activities alike (Kristjansson, 2010). Seligman (2000) noted this as a possibility but argues this is not problematic because science is not concerned with morality.Morality aside, anti- mixer activities do not necessarily farm relationships and research indicates that a well lived life does therefore involve actions that promote corroborative social relationships (Bauer et al. , 2005 McCullough, Kimeldorf & Cohen, 2008 Peterson et al. , 2007). star way that Kristjansson (2010) suggests that the thorny issue of morality and psychology could be overcome is by lend oneselfing determine to define those behaviours that fall outside of social norms, although this may result in other issues if these norms are restrictive.Although Kristjansson is not a psychologist, the intellect that a well-lived life should involve societal norms does seem to be supported by Diener (2000) who suggests that societal pressures do have some bearing upon individual life satisfaction reporting. Building on the concept that a life satisfaction includes a social component, Bauer et al. (2005) argue that a well lived life includes social experiences and the ability to ascribe those experiences to a positive meaning. They go on to explain that in psychological terms this translates to having a balance between social interactions and having positive feelings about them (Bauer et al. 2005). These findings imply that there is indeed a social element to a life well lived which is supported by further research. Peterson et al. (2007) raise that the sociable voice traits such as gratitude have pissed effects upon life satisfaction. Indeed Peterson et al. (2007) note that social character traits such as gratitude are more strongly agree with life satisfaction than the three pathways to happiness (Seligman & Royzman, 2003, pp 1 53). Gratitude As with a well-lived life, gratitude is not easily defined (Wood, Froh & Geraghty, 2010).Although gratitude is multifariously described as an emotion, a trait and an action, nevertheless the literature indicates that a satisfying disposition tends to be positively associated with happiness and a well-lived life (McCullough, Emmons & Tsang, 2002 McCullough et al. , 2008 Wood, Joseph & Maltby, 2008). Typically, gratitude is described as a rejoinder that occurs after the receipt of something perceived as positive due to the prosocial actions of another (Emmons & McCullough, 2003).Aware of the limitations of previous field research, Emmons and McCullough (2003) attempted to cod a study design that at random assigned participants to different treatment conditions. They found a difference in mean well being scores crossways gratitude treatment groups from the comparison group, although less than expected, last(a) that gratitude tended to increase psycholog ical, social and spiritual well-being. One of the limitations noted in the study design (Emmons & McCullough, 2003), however, was that the study period was only three weeks long which ay not have been long enough to identify changes in responses. This limitation has been commented upon by others (Lazarus, 2003). Indeed, Lazarus (2003) notes in incident that the overlook of longitudinal studies in official Psychology studies concerning life satisfaction makes it demanding to identify causation and track precisely how different circumstances affect individuals, some(prenominal) the factors that contribute to a well lived life. Kristjansson (2010) notes that this is not a problem unique to studies of well-lived lives. Wood et al. 2010) noted that the definition of gratitude used in the Emmons and McCullough (2003) study did not include all of the things participants reported gratitude for that did not include a benefactor. He proposed that gratitude includes an eight level ver tical life orientation including in locomote order noticing and appreciating life could be worse, life is short, the present moment, engaging in ritual acts of agreeableness, admiring beauty, focusing on what one has, appreciating other people and reflecting upon what one has to be thankful for (Wood, et al. 2010). Using this expanded definition, Wood, linked gratitude to the declamatory Five traits, used to broadly describe human personality (Watson, Clark, & Harkness, 1994) and that people who are grateful tend to be more agreeable, sociable, less neurotic, conscientious and extroverted. Commenting upon the benefits of gratitude, Lyubomirsky et al. (2005) note that an attitude of gratitude appears to be incompatible with ban life feelings such as voracity and envy.They note that appears to encourage individuals to reflect on experiences and social relationships in a positive way. It has also been suggested that gratitude appears to protect individuals from depression (Wood et al. , 2010) and support recovery from injury (Dunn & Brody, 2008). mathematical Future Research Directions The literature indicates some(prenominal) interesting areas for future research. The first, based on observations by Wood et al. (2010) is that there have been only a few studies poring over the direct relationship between gratitude and happiness.Given the lack of longitudinal research to date as noted by Lazarus (2003) and alluded to by Emmons and McCullough (2003), it may well be promising to conduct intra-individual longitudinal research of the impact of gratitude on an individuals perception of happiness when experiencing the normal stressors of daily living (Lazarus, 2003). It may also be useful to apply a longitudinal study to experiment if the things that make one grateful change crossways cultures, ages and genders (Diener, 2000 Linley et al. , 2006 Peterson et al. 2007) although it would be highly recommended to rid of using self-selected participants in t he study. Conclusion delimit a life well-lived and the factors associated with it is a problem that has defied easy explanation for philosophers and other academics across the ages. Much of the previous research has involved recording self-reporting by participants. Given this and the fact that the very nature of happiness and a life well lived is a inwrought experience, it has been argued that a propensity for gratitude impacts on an individuals ability to view their lives in a positive way, despite individual circumstances.It has also been argued that an attitude of gratefulness has several physical and mental benefits for the individual, although these studies have not yet examined precisely if the factors that make an individual grateful change across cultures and genders. Further research is indicated in this fascinating area, peradventure using longitudinal studies to explore how gratitude enables individuals to view adverse circumstances differently over time. References B auer, J. J. , McAdams, D. P. , & Sakaeda, A. R. (2005). 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(2008) Gratitude uniquely predicts satisfaction with life additive validity above the domains and facets of the five factor model. Personality and Individual Differences, 45(1), pp 4954 Wood, A. M. , Froh, J. J. , & Geraghty, A. W . A. (2010) Gratitude and well-being A review and theoretical integration. Clinical Psychology Review, 2010, Vol. 30(7), pp. 890-905.