POSITIVE PSYCHOLOGY FOR THE WEEKEND

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Yesterday I happened to meet up with a guy in a coffee shop. We recognized each other immediately. While chatting, we got coffee, sat down, and talked about positive psychology.

The meeting was neither random nor happenstance. We planned it. I know it"s silly to say that something goes without saying, and writing that something goes without saying is sillier yet, but I"m writing it anyway: Planning and intentionality are very good things. Without intentional planning, I never would have met my coffee-buddy, and I"d be less smart today than I am now.

This guy (I"ll call him Carlton, because that"s his name) was inspired to reach out to me with an email because I"m teaching a Happiness Class at the University of Montana this spring semester. He has a Master"s degree in positive psychology. He wanted to talk. Positive psychology people are like that. After using my impaired scheduling skills to mess up our first planned meeting, we were able to get together on our second try.

Carlton was abuzz with positive energy even before he drank his Americano, but that should be no particular surprise. He told me about taking red-eye flights from Seattle to Philadelphia to complete his "commuter" M.. in positive psych. Clearly, he"s high on life, which made for an episode of fast talking and listening that got cut short by my need to drive east to Absarokee. So, what happened during this short, speedy conversation that made me smarter?

Turns out, we"re from the same hometown. I"m sure that made me smarter. After all, that was the town where I read nearly every Norman Vincent Peale book ever written. Apparently, I learned that growing up in Vancouver, Washington creates a need for positivity. But, of greater relevance was the fact that he was (another non-surprise) a treasure of information about positive psychology.

Carlton told me of some of his favorite positive psychology ideas and activities. I took notes. I"m not going into the details. Most of the information is top-secret and you"ll have to take my Happiness class to get the down low. Instead. I"m presenting you with one highlight to take with you into your weekend.

The best partamongst many good partswas being re-introduced to one of the biggest positive psychology names of all time. Although I knew about Christopher Peterson in a distant sort of way, I"d never really plunged into his work. Maybe that"s because I figured if I knew about Martin Seligman, then I didn"t need to know much about Chris Peterson. Or maybe it was because sometimes I have a limited and narrow take on the world. Somehow, sometimes, I presume that if I don"t know about something, it must not be all that important, or I would have already learned it. I recognize that as a terribly self-centered perspective, but it can creep into my psyche anyway, leading me down a road where I think I already know everything I need to know. When that happens, I need to do work to get around and past or through my own narrow mental world.

Carlton not only offered to lecture in my Happiness class (yet another reason to register now!), he also helped open my mind to deeper issues in positive psychology. He told me about a video where Peterson boils everything about positive psychology down to three words. The three words, "Other people matter."

Yesterday I happened to meet up with a guy in a coffee shop. We recognized each other immediately. While chatting, we got coffee, sat down, and talked about positive psychology. The meeting was neither random nor happenstance. We planned it. I know it's silly to say that something goes without saying, and writing that something...
Quoted From: https://johnsommersflanagan.com/2019/11/22/positive-psychology-for-the-weekend/

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