Positive Psychology – A New Field with a Literary Past

A refreshing change occurring in this field is positive psychology. “Positive psychology is an umbrella term for the study of positive emotions, positive character traits, and enabling institutions” (Seligman et al., American Psychologist, 2005).

Six virtues established by positive psychology are: wisdom and knowledge, courage, humanity, justice, temperance, and transcendence. These virtues are not new. In his utopian work The Republic, Plato explored how man could best obtain wisdom and how a just soul paralleled a just society.


Research indicates that doing exercises such as the one below can bring greater levels of life happiness. 

Gratitude Letter or Video

Gratitude is a wonderful feeling of thanks that, when expressed, brings positive emotions to both initiator and recipient. To experience this for yourself, pick someone who has been kind and helpful to you, but has not heard your personal expression of thanks.

  • Write a gratitude letter to the person you pick, expressing your gratitude and why you are grateful in specific and concrete terms.
  • OR make a gratitude video for the person, expressing why you are grateful in specific ways for them.
  • If at all possible, deliver it personally and ask the person to read the letter in your presence.
  • Post a video on youtube (under 3 minutes long)
  • Send a link to the video to strongheart@mercerislandmartialarts.com;  or wells@mercerislandmartialarts.com
  • or turn in a copy of the letter before your next belt test

Read more at Suite101: New Year's Resolutions: Happiness and Positive Psychology http://www.suite101.com/content/new-years-resolutions-a181463#ixzz1Bd3zGvay


Please contact me if you have anymore questions, Have fun!


Mercer Island Martial Arts

2630 77th Ave SE, Suites 106-108

Mercer Island, WA 98040

(206) 230-9050


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