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Thursday, June 21, 2012

A Roadmap to Happiness


Positive Psychology is the latest movement of researchers finding out what makes you happy and fulfilled. Instead of thinking of people as sick, now there is more research getting into how to make us even happier so we can increase our life satisfaction. In order to make it a science, psychologists call Happiness now "Psychological Well-being". One of my favorite psychological well-being concepts from the time I studied Positive Psychology is Ryff’s model. It provides a great map for me to work with my clients and it can help you create Happiness in your own life! 

We all know it's easier to improve our life if we have specific ideas to which areas we need to work on. Direction is the crucial key when it comes to focusing your energy on becoming happier and more fulfilled. Carol Ryff did a great job on telling us what you need to achieve Happiness. In her opinion, Psychological Well-being aka Happiness is made up of six elements (for the exact model scroll down):

Autonomy
Self-acceptance
Purpose in life
Positive Relationships
Personal Growth
Environmental Mastery


These elements are a great road map for you to see how satisfied you are in each of the areas. Do you feel like you have accepted yourself as who you are? Do you have determined a temporary or constant Purpose in your life? Would you consider the Relationships in your life positive? When do you fell you have the most autonomy?

We all need to feel like we grow and get better in order to be happy with ourselves. I am attaching the model here for you to print out and map yourself. To take action, you could give yourself a rating of 1-10 on each of the elements. It’s a great direction if you’re not quite as happy is you wish to be. You’ll feel like you are in control the more you take actions to find out what it is you need to be fulfilled.