Blum asserts “love begins at the beginning” (as cited in Bolt, 2004). Love is first formed through bonds of an infant and the caregiver or parents. The interactions and experiences through love of this first relationships can lead to three attachment styles which fosters or decreases future love within relationships. A warm and responsive relationship leads to secure attachment. A rejecting and cold relationship leads to avoidant attachment. Inconsistent parenting leads to anxious attachment.One explores three categories of love which are passion, intimacy, and commitment. Within these three categories change may be need by one to strengthen, preserve, and build close relationships.
One show empathy byidentifying with another's feelings. To see and feel from another’s perspective involves strong emotional feelings. With these feelings comes empathy. Snap judgments are a competitor to empathy and need to be avoided. Snap judgments do not allow one to see another’s inner traits or life situations. Practicing forgiveness allows one to be more understanding and empathic. Bolt, (2004) stated “when people forgive, they become less driven to harm their transgressors.” “In fact, they become more motivated to act in ways that will benefit them” (p. 56). Forgiveness is linked to mental health and well-being. Cultivating empathy comes with benefits such as human morality and compassion. Through fostering empathy in oneself and one’s children one nurtures social compassion.
The wise are intelligent, but the intelligent are not always wise. Wisdom involves more then just mere intelligence.Emotional intelligence contributes to wisdom by the capacity to perceive, understand, express, and manage emotions. Successful intelligence contributes to wisdom by thinking well practically, analytically, and creatively. Tacit knowledge is also key to successful intelligence. Bolt, (2004) stated “it involves “knowing how” more than “knowing what” and is crucial to achieving important life goals” (p. 89). Also there are needs for one to adapt to one’s environment, shape one’s environment, or choose a new environment. Considering exemplars such as Albert Einstein is a potential to understanding wisdom. To learn what wisdom is one must study wisdom. Baltes and Smith asserts “Baltes and his colleagues define wisdom simply as good judgment and advice aboutimportant but uncertain matters of life” (as cited in Bolt, 2004).
Commitments are fostered by motives or strivings. One commits to strivings by seeking goals. One’s strivings can either be approach or avoidant goals. Approach goals are movements toward positives and avoidant goals are movements away from negatives. A higher sense of subjective well-being is associated with approach goals and a lower sense of subjective well-being is associated with avoidant goals. Extrinsic and introjected motivations are more constrained; one will feel less ownership of our goals, even somewhat coerced; in extrinsic activity, we experience external pressure; through introjected activity, one senses internal pressure (Bolt, 2004). Intrinsic and identified motivations are undertaken willingly with a clear sense of choice; however identified activity may not be pleasurable it is consistent with a one’s deeper beliefs; goals chosen freely flow from developing interests or from core values (Bolt, 2004). Commitment in one’s strivings are one’s path to autonomy, competence, and relatedness. Commitment enables one’s social life and serves need of belonging. To foster commitments one must find meaning, turn a should to a want, choose commitments then act on them and make them know to others, as well as review and set priorities for commitments, maintain hope, and use voluntary activities (Bolt, 2004).
Happiness can be seen as the key factor that motivates life, as well as the purpose and meaning of life. One’s life is filled with the pursuit of happiness, in order to pursue happiness one needs to assess what makes one happy. Happiness is one of the more important life goals. One’s that are happy experience longevity in life, have a greater level of productivity, are rewarded with better interpersonal relations.To understand satisfying life experiences is to understand happiness. One has to determine what makes one most happy. Bolt, (2004) stated “when people reflect on their most satisfying experiences, they think primarily of times when they felt worthy, competent, related to others, or free of external pressure” (p. 124). Aspirations of one’s life are linked to a lowered sense of well-being, while perceptions of one’s life is important to their well-being (Bolt, 2004). Csikszentmihalyi asserts that what makes experiences genuinely satisfying is a state of consciousness called flow, in which our concentration is so focused that it amounts to absolute absorption in an activity (cited in Bolt, 2004). Flow pulls one into what one is involved in and brings happiness with it.The pursuit of happiness needs to be fostered by following certain recommendations. Recommendations such as don’t confuse well-being with being well-off, make wise comparisons, keep a gratitude journal, discover your flow, finish what you start and wholly experience it along the way, find a hobby, cultivate family ties, know your neighbors, volunteer, and practice spirituality (Bolt, 2004).
One has to understanding “who am I?” which defines one’s self-concept. One’s self-understandings organizes thoughts, actions and affect one’s perceptions, memories, and future goals (Bolt, 2004). Understand the impact of culture which is how some cultures will encourage development of one’s independent self defined oneself in terms of one’s personal traits, and some cultures will promote one’s interdependent self which will be seen as one’s identity in terms of ones social connections. Evaluating the one’s self.Campbell and Lavellee asserts “not only do we ask, “Who am I?” but we also ask, “How do I feel about who I am?” (cited in Bolt, 2004).One who posses high self-esteem is happier then one who posses low self-esteem, which is aligned with failure. Although there is a dark side to high self-esteem. This lies with ones who has an inflated self-concept and some may identify with narcissistic statements like "I can live my life any way I feel like“ and are susceptible to interpersonal violence. In studying the sources of self-esteem one will gain knowledge to the links between self-concept and behavior.One cultivates humility by admitting one’s own pride, by gaining feedback that is accurate, by knowing and learning it is ok to laugh at oneself, one also has to take a cosmic perspective.Understanding and practicing one’s own true humility is practicing one’s self-forgetfulness.
It is to know at what extent one believes that good rather then bad things will happen in one’s lives. Optimism is shown to linked to both physical and psychological well-being and helps one better cope with stressful events in life and live longer than those who are not optimist.To explore hopeone has to gain a better understanding of how certain aspects such having psychology of hope, goals, willpower, waypower, hope and achievement affect hopeful people and promote hope in order to better become a hopeful person. To foster hope one has to follow recommendation which are to identify goals, strengthening willpower and waypower, and visualizing success, learn optimism, and communal hope. One has identify and set goals, strengthen one’s motivation, find the right path for success and move responsibly toward attainment of goals, see oneself as successful and succeeding, remember and learn from successful goal pursuits, and stay active within one’s community.
Bolt, (2004) stated “in carefully applying thescientific method, positive psychology aims toassess, understand, and then build the human strengths” (p.19). One applies the scientific method to the study of humanstrengths and civic virtues such as; Love Empathy Wisdom Commitment Happiness Self-respect Hope
LoveHarlow asserts“learning to love is reallyabout learning to live”(as cited in Bolt, 2004).Love is what one holdsstrongly for another inthe form of affectionthrough either personalties or kinship. Love is formed fromattachment styles. Determine one’s ownattachment styles. Explore types of love. One should build closerelationships.
EmpathyMerton asserts“compassion is the keenawareness of theinterdependence of allthings” (as cited inBolt, 2004). See and feel another’sperspective. Avoid making snapjudgments. Practice forgiveness ofothers. One needs to cultivateempathy. Foster empathy.EmpathySeeingFeelingForgivenessSnap JudgmentsCultivatingFostering
WisdomEinstein asserts“wisdom is not aproduct ofschooling but ofthe lifelongattempt to acquireit” (cited in PsychWisdom, n.d.). Intelligence is not alwayswise. Emotional intelligencecontributes to wisdom. Successful intelligencecontributes to wisdom. Understand what wisdom is. Learn what wisdom is.
CommitmentBolt, (2004) stated“commitment meansconsciously anddeliberately gettingbeyond the urge to doonly what isimmediately satisfying”(p. 105). Understand and determineone’s strivings Make commitments to one’sstrivings. Determine reasons for one’sstrivings. Commitment in one’s strivings Fostering one’s commitments.0246Love Work Family CollegeLevels of CommitmentLevels ofCommitment
HappinessAristotle asserts that“happiness is themeaning and thepurpose of life, thewhole aim and end ofhuman existence” (ascited in Bolt, 2004). Assess one’s own happiness. Understand satisfying lifeexperiences. Flow Pursue happiness in life. Recommendations fosterpursuing one’s happiness.
Self-respectMarkTwain asserts “noman, deep down in theprivacy of his heart, hasany considerable respectfor himself” (as cited inBolt, 2004). Reflect on one’s own self-concept. Noncontingent one’s ownself-esteem. Cultivate one’s humility. Practice one’s self-forgetfulness.Self-respectSelf-conceptSelf-esteemHumilitySelf-forgetfulness
HopeMarvin and Darabontassert “hope is a goodthing, maybe the bestof things. And no goodthing ever dies” (ascited in Bolt, 2004). Assesses optimism and thebenefits. Explore hope. Foster hope.AssessOptimismExploreHopeFosterHopeHope
ConclusionThe aim of positive psychology is to understand and build humanstrengths to help people thrive. It is an assuming factor of people’sability to choose, change, and control one’s direction in life.Throughthe application of the scientific method of studying human strengthsand civic virtues such as “love”, “empathy”, “wisdom”,”commitment”, “happiness”, “self-respect”, and “hope”, one’s fromdifferent perspectives can make investigations that contribute to theunderstanding of human flourishing.As for the scientific study of well-being, positive psychology’s notable benefactions make assessments ofdistinctive strengths.As well as positive psychologist’s ability ofcomprehension of the significance of autonomy, the relationship, andthe causations of people’s values in human flourishing.As I better understand and study the significances and meaningsof “love”, “empathy”, “wisdom”,” commitment”, “happiness”, “self-respect”, and “hope” I know how they will enable a sense of well-beingin my personal and social worlds. Although I must continue to fosterthese human strengths and civic virtues within myself to maintain asense of autonomy and human flourishing.
Resource PageBolt, M. (2004). Pursuing human strengths: Apositive psychology guide. NewYork, NY:Worth Publishers.World in Motion. (n.d.). Retrieved fromhttp://scotterb.wordpress.com/2009/05/05/empathy-wisdom-and-the-supreme-court/PsychWisdom. (n.d.). Retrieved fromhttp://www.psychwisdom.com/