Archives for August, 2011
Working in the mental health field can be like trying to row up stream without a paddle. There are any number of problems, dysfunctions, and illness that consume peoples' lives. When people are at this point they certainly need help stabilizing their situation, and this is a crucial first step in helping people get what they want and need from life. It is also possible that people have a greater motivation and desire for their life. Should the helping relationship be taken a step further to offer tools, skills, and resources allowing people a conduit for more optimal living? Positive psychology is something that caught my attention because I got tired of focusing solely on illness and dysfunction. I wanted to learn how to be happier and enjoy life, instead of simply how to be less anxious and stressed out. I wanted to be able to help other people find greater fulfillment and meaning, instead of just deal with the necessities of life. There are many things we can do personally and there are many techniques to apply to counseling, coaching, or other helping professions.
When it comes to the application of positive psychology in everyday life, the work place is an ever increasing platform to examine concepts and principles of optimal human performance. Learning how to motivate employees, stimulate greater productivity, and enhance job satisfaction are crucial areas of concern for growing, successful companies. Fortunately researchers like Teresa Amabile & Steven Kramer, authors of The Progress Principle: Using Small Wins to Ignite Joy, Engagement, and Creativity at Work, are helping to reveal how companies and workers can find greater engagement and fulfillment from their work. They were kind enough to answer a few questions regarding their book. Read the interview below for insight on creativity, work performance, and motivation.
When someone approaches you with those two apologetic words, "I'm sorry," are you able to respond in kind with those ever important words, "I forgive you?" In order to have a healthy and positive relationship we must learn to forgive. There are of course many other characteristics of a healthy relationship such as trust and honesty, communication skills and a willingness to compromise - though forgiveness may be one of the most important components of a positive relationship. When it comes to relationships there will always be disagreements, different opinions, and moments of frustration, and how we deal with this drama is crucial for relationship success. If we go through life holding onto resentment and cynicism, this negativity will build and build, ultimately leading to a relationship full of animosity. However, if we can learn to forgive others and let go of bitterness and insult, our relationships can actually improve. In fact, research reveals that forgiveness may be one of the more valuable attributes to maintaining a healthy relationship.
If you're like most people, sleep is crucial for your well-being. Research increasingly reveals that people do not function optimally when they are sleep deprived. Sleep gives us energy, a positive attitude, and better ability to cope with daily stress. We need adequate sleep for physical restoration, growth, adaptability and memory. In general, Americans, particularly adolescents and aging adults, don't get enough sleep. Sleep deprivation can decrease our cognitive ability to focus, problem solve, and maintain attention, and it can cause irritability and emotional irregularity. All of which can interfere with positive well-being. So, what can be done to help us sleep better and be more rested? Often, sleep disturbances are related to excessive worrying and general arousal during bed time - this could be from our drinking and eating habits, or a general inability to relax and wind down.
It's amazing how many new and innovative ideas arrive in the world each and every day. People are constantly progressing and expanding current ideas to solve problems, make things more convenient, and to economically endure. This constant creating shouldn't be so surprising though. We are all highly creative if we learn to think in a creative manner and start cultivating our ability to see things in a new and improved way. Creative people do think differently. They tend to be more curious and free-spirited. They are independent thinkers and look beyond what is in front of them. You can start to take on some of these characteristics and be more creative as well. Remove mental blocks Have you ever been afraid that your ideas were stupid or too strange to catch on? We often block our own creativity by being afraid of what others might think. Removing this mental block is crucial for any creative development. Free yourself by not second guessing or limiting your ideas.
This is a guest post from Aleks Srbinoski of Fulfilling Happiness Will aligning positivity and personal values with company culture lead to profits? Delivering Happiness CEO Jenn Lim and Zappos founder Tony Hseih will tell you that it does. In fact, at Zappos, a company that is valued at over 1 billion dollars, new trainees are offered $2,000 to leave if they do not feel positively aligned to the company values and culture. I recently conducted a fascinating interview with Delivering Happiness CEO Jenn Lim, as part of my 'The Fulfilling Happiness Edge' radio show. In our extensive interview, she reported how the company values were created through the input of every person on staff and this is one of the main reasons why their staff retention, customer service and productivity are so impressive. She also spoke candidly about how these values went on to create a sense of social capital and spawn the massive Delivering Happiness social movement.
I usually am very effective at dealing with stress. Lately though, I've had a lot on my plate, and have been racing around to stay on top of everything. Frankly I'm starting to feel the effects of stress. We all experience day to day hassles and issues that frequently cause us some tension and concern. Stress is simply the body’s non-specific response to any demand made on it. If we don't deal with stress is can lead to fatigue, exhaustion, lack of concentration, indecisiveness, irritability, and even depression. Stress can contribute to illness (physical or psychological), and lead to accidents or careless behavior. All of this got me thinking about how I can deal with stress and keep a positive attitude during turbulent times. Here are a few ideas: