In Authentic Happiness, the bestselling author of Learned Optimism introduces the revolutionary, scientifically based idea of “Positive Psychology.” Positive Psychology focuses on strengths rather than weaknesses, asserting that happiness is not the result of good genes or luck.
Happiness can be cultivated by identifying and using many of the strengths and traits that listeners already possess — including kindness, originality, humor, optimism, and generosity. By frequently calling upon their “signature strengths,” listeners will develop natural buffers against misfortune and the experience of negative emotion — elevating their lives to a fresh, more positive place.
Drawing on groundbreaking psychological research, Seligman shows how Positive Psychology is shifting the profession’s paradigm away from its narrow-minded focus on pathology, victim-hood, and mental illness to positive emotion, virtue and strength, and positive institutions. Our signature strengths can be nurtured throughout our lives, yielding benefits to our health, relationships, and careers.
Seligman provides the “Signature Strengths Survey” that can be used to measure how much positive emotion listeners experience, in order to help determine what their highest strengths are. Authentic Happiness shows how to identify the very best in ourselves, so we can achieve new and sustainable levels of authentic contentment, gratification, and meaning.