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Positive Psychology

Positive Psychology – Does This Mean I Have to be Happy all the Time? 


Employee: Experiencing positive events and emotions at work are not only beneficial to your immediate well-being, they also contribute to long term well-being both at work and outside of work. 


Employer: Applying positive psychology in the workplace can increase employee creativity, increase performance, and reduce turnover. Positive psychology can be applied by training leaders in transformational leadership, designing jobs to have more skill variety, task autonomy, and task feedback, and by encouraging positive writing, gratitude journaling, and mindfulness. 


Positive psychology is the science of the positive aspects of life, such as well-being, hope, and happiness. One application of positive psychology to the workplace is through positive organizational behaviour (POB). The three main criteria of POB are confidence (or self-efficacy), hope, and resilience. Positive psychology can facilitate well-being for employees by providing a lens to focus on building upon the positive aspects of life. It is important to remember a few things to prevent these initiatives from becoming negative:  

  • Remember positive psychology does not suggest that humans should only experience positive emotions and ignore all negative emotions.  

  • Do not encourage employees to simply brush off negative experiences, as this fosters a blame-the-victim mentality.  

  • Ensure that the organization addresses the source of the negative experiences.  

While a main feature of positive psychology is building upon strengths that individuals already possess, it is also important and beneficial to focus on building up weaknesses. An employee would not be able to reach their full potential without growing and developing both their strengths and weaknesses.  

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