Positive psychology

The main message of Achor‘s talk is that by focussing on the positive rather than the negative or the average we can achieve more. He supplies both anecdotal evidence and evidence from research studies to back this message up. I particularly related to his example about medical schools focussing on the negative aspects of health as when I trained as a nurse we were focussed on ill health in the main and my colleagues and myself experienced symptoms of all the diseases we studied like the medical students in his example. It can be difficult to focus on positive aspects of health such as healthy lifestyles when my entire career has been focussed on the disease model of health care, but since starting the unit I have been trying more to incorporate  it into my daily interactions with patients and colleagues by making positive comments when appropriate and praising healthy aspects of their lifestyle. I believe strongly that we should take notice because by focussing on what is right rather than what is wrong we become more positive and optimistic in outlook and people tend to respond better to positive encouragement than criticism.

Positivity self test

I got nine positive and zero negative which indicate that for the last 24 hours I have been a positive person, which I’m not surprised about as the last 24 hours have been positive. I expect that the results will be pretty consistent across my life now as I feel I am in general positive and optimistic. Interestingly, I misread the instructions at first and thought the questions applied to ever feeling a certain way and my results were 10:9 positive: negative. This difference didn’t really surprise me as I lacked confidence in my teens and early twenties and also was more pessimistic in my outlook.

PERMA self test

My scores were P=8; E=7; R=9; M=10; A=8.

This indicates that I have a very high level for relationships and meaning in my life and a high level for the other aspects. I am pleased with these results and not surprised as I am very satisfied with most of the aspects of my life at the moment. I feel the results would have been completely different when I was younger, as I feel that I have learnt to accept myself more as I have got older and have become grateful for everything I have rather than upset at what I haven’t got. I think that having a happy and supportive marriage has played a huge part in this and my studying an area that I find fascinating. I hope that I can maintain this optimistic outlook as I progress through life.


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