Cultivating Happiness in Everyday life

Cultivating Happiness in Everyday life

Cultivating happiness in everyday life | Column

PNW Local News

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For 60 years the model used for psychology and psychotherapy was a disease model. It asked: What’s wrong with me? Some positive outcomes came from the disease model: a science of classifiable mental illnesses was developed; previously non-treatable illnesses became treatable or sometimes curable; drug and psychological treatments were designed and tested; miserable people became less miserable. There are also costs to this model. Sufferers of mental illness can feel they are victims of their pathology. The disease model forgot the improvement of quality of life for normal and high talent people.

In 2005 Martin Seligman opened the Positive Psychology Center at the University of Pennsylvania. He asks: Can psychology make us happier? Positive psychologists believe that psychology and psychotherapy should be as concerned with strength as with weakness and as interested in building the best things in life as repairing the worst. Seligman believes that the skills of happiness are different than the skills that relieve misery and that normal and high talent people deserve help in achieving and nurturing happiness. The science of positive psychology has created ways of measuring happiness (see tests at, has classified different types of happiness, and has discovered causality through both brain research and the observation of happy people.

To read the remainder of this interesting article, along with a summary of positive psychology’s three types of happiness – click here