11 Jul The science of happiness has just turned 10!
It has been 10 years since University of Pennsylvania psychologist Martin Seligman kick-started the field of Positive Psychology – the study of what makes people happy, what makes life fulfilling and the role of positive emotions in the human psyche. (Traditionally, of course, psychology has focused on the reverse: sadness, anxiety, anger, grief.)
The decade mark was observed last month in Philadelphia by the First World Congress on Positive Psychology, where it was clear that the field is flourishing, to use a favorite word of positive psychologists. Planners had hoped for 800 attendees and got twice that number, with psychologists, educators and students from more than 50 countries descending upon the City of Brotherly Love. There were signs that findings by positive psychology researchers had begun to influence economics, education and even government policy in some countries. But it was also clear that some of the heady findings from the infancy of the field had been oversimplified, and that later research has become more nuanced.
To read more about developments in the study of happiness and positive psychology from this TIME magazine article – click here