Flourish is an overview of Martin Seligman’s internationally recognised work that suggests learned optimism, motivation and character are the key ingredients to happiness and wellbeing as measured objectively by positive psychologists.
Flourish is a comprehensive guide to objective human happiness.
Suggesting that positive emotion, engagement, relationships, meaning and achievement (PERMA) lies at the heart of human happiness, Martin Seligman presents his lifetime work which underpins the practice of applied positive psychology around the world.
Below are some of the key insights from the book.
- Happiness is temporary and state dependent whereas Wellbeing is something that we can effectively measure over time.
- The scientifically validated factors underpinning higher levels of wellbeing are PERMA – positive emotion, engagement, relationships, meaning and achievement.
- GDP per capita measures increase when regrettables occur including fatal car crashes, divorce suits and medical negligence.
- Applied positive psychology is the practice of encouraging others to flourish using validated techniques including gratitude visits, signature strengths, three wishes, building GRIT (Angela Duckworth) and effective praise (Carol Dweck)
- Learned optimism is correlated against higher survival rates for heart attacks, lower duration of the common cold and improve T cells within the blood.
- GRIT is the single most accurate predictor of academic and career success when measured over a long time series.
- PTSD can also take the form of post-traumatic growth where the experience of trauma prompts higher levels of PERMA including a commitment to GRIT and greater sense of meaning in life (e.g. Andy Murray, Dunblane)
- Global Assessment Tool (GAT) is the deepest and most data rich survey of collective wellbeing ever developed and is now being applied across cultures, within governments and within the 1.1m strong US armed forces.
- Given the higher incidence of mental illness within the world, there is a compelling reason to teach applied positive psychology within the education system.