New research from the science of positive psychology has found a number of practical exercises you can do to boost your happiness and decrease your depression.
Choose one of the following 7 exercises and practice it for 1 week:
Study noted above:
Gander, F., Proyer, R. T., Ruch, W., & Wyss, T. (2012). Strength-based positive interventions: Further evidence for their potential in enhancing well-being. Journal of Happiness Studies.
Related studies and sources with similar exercises:
Mitchell, J., Stanimirovic, R., Klein, B., & Vella-Brodrick, D. (2009). A randomised controlled trial of a self-guided internet intervention promoting well-being. Computers in Human Behavior, 25, 749–760.
Mongrain, M., & Anselmo-Matthews, T. (2012).Do positive psychology exercises work? A replication of Seligman et al. Journal of Clinical Psychology, 68(4).
Niemiec, R. M., & Wedding, D. (2013). Positive psychology at the movies 2: Using films to build virtues and character strengths. Cambridge, MA: Hogrefe.
Otake, K., Shimai, S., Tanaka-Matsumi, J., Otsui, K., & Fredrickson, B. (2006). Happy people become happier through kindness: A counting kindness intervention. Journal of Happiness Studies, 7(3), 361–375.
Peterson, C. (2006). A primer in positive psychology. New York: Oxford University Press.
Peterson, C. & Seligman, M. E. P. (2004). Character strengths and virtues: A handbook and classification. New York: Oxford University Press.
Rashid, T., & Anjum, A. (2008). Positive psychotherapy for young adults and children. In J. R. Z. Abela & B. L. Hankin (Eds.), Handbook of depression in children and adolescents: Causes, treatment, and prevention (pp. 250–287). New York: Guilford.
Seligman, M. E. P., Steen, T. A., Park, N., & Peterson, C. (2005). Positive psychology progress: Empirical validation of interventions. American Psychologist, 60, 410–421.
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Last reviewed: 28 Dec 2012