Flourish: A Visionary New Understanding of Happiness and Well-being Hardcover – Apr 5 2011
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Martin Seligman is the inventor of positive psychology and a major figure in the well-being movement. This makes him a significant figure in world culture. A happier society requires us to attend much more to the quality of our inner life, and to proven methods for improving it. This is important stuff. Observer I was immediately chamred. Seligman's intentions are admirable and exciting. He is consumed by his mission, which is to take psychology on from its traditional role in alleviating misery, and broaden it into positive psychology - the entirely different art of teaching us how to be wiser, stronger, more generous to others, more self-disciplined, and more capable of dealing with difficulty and rejection. The book is full of nuggets about why positive approaches work. Admirable and exciting. Sunday Times Since Martin Seligman launched the positive psychology movement more than a decade ago, his methods have attracted a global following, including David Cameron... The rise of 'positive psychology' has been all but unstoppable, with Seligman's book Authentic Happiness its key text... Now, in his book Flourish, happiness is out and well-being, or 'flourishing', is in. -- Matthew Kirk, British Ambassador to Finland Psychologies His most personal and boldest book so far... Seligman's book is a paean to applied science, a blue-print for how to translate empirical evidence from the laboratory to the real world... Unlike many authors, he offers detailed and tested solutions as well as compelling arguments for how societies can aim to raise the amount of positive emotion, meaning, good relationships and accomplishment in their citizens... Everyone stands to benefit from his initiatives. If they are happy, flourishing or enjoying well-being, people won't care about the labels that researchers attach to those good feelings. Nature Seligman describes several exercises that are easy to do and result in a significant and lasting effect on people's self-reported sense of well-being. (For example, each night, write down three things that went well that day and why.) Coming up with these exercises is high art - the description of their effect is compelling and left me promising myself to do them... readers who persevere will remember many of the points that Seligman made in this book - and will act on at least some of them... Some of his insights could really lead to greater well-being for society as a whole. -- Professor Richard Layard Huffington Post Martin Seligman did the world a service by focusing his profession's attention away from correcting negatives and towards promoting positives...flourishing is to be welcomed. Financial Times --This text refers to the Paperback edition.
About the Author
Martin E.P. Seligman, Ph.D., the Robert A. Fox Professor of Psychology at the University of Pennsylvania, works on positive psychology, learned helplessness, depression, ethnopolitical conflict, and optimism. Dr. Seligman's work has been supported by the National Institute of Mental Health, the National Science Foundation, the Guggenheim Foundation, the Mellon Foundation, and the MacArthur Foundation. He is the director of the Positive Psychology Network and scientific director of Foresight, Inc., a testing company that predicts success in various walks of life.
He was for fourteen years the Director of the Clinical Training Program of the University of Pennsylvania and was named a "Distinguished Practitioner" by the National Academies of Practice. In 1995, he received the Pennsylvania Psychological Association's award for "Distinguished Contributions to Science and Practice."
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Top Customer Reviews
However, and as the reader impatiently waits for the good doctor to explain his new theory in details - after all, it is easy to say you need "engagement" without defining what engagement really is and how it can be achieved - the book moves away from the message and turns into a boring, uninteresting manifesto in defence of positive psychology in general, and professor Seligman's credentials in particular.
He spends more time, trying to sell the idea than he does explaining it, as if he is making an extraordinary effort to convert unbelievers, than to preach to the already converted. Considering that the majority of those who would buy the book are among the latter group, I am baffled why he decided to turn this into a marketing material!
The book continues with more validating examples of positive psychology's successes, including two excruciating chapters about Seligman's work with the military. His repeatedly defensive arguments - specially those targeted at Barbara Ehrenreich and her likeminded entourage - are more suitable for an op-ed column than for a book of this calibre.
Toward the end, Seligman steps into an economic debate about the financial crisis, with such flimsy analogies that makes you wonder why this titan of the psychology should step out of his field of expertise so carelessly!
All being said, "Flourish" is a good book, and for those who are looking for fresh ideas, it does provide enough rich and valuable content to justify the time/money invested.Read more ›
The reason is that Seligman writes like he's an author, not just an expert, and with that writing skill he was able to convey the absolute importance of this line of work, and how powerful it might be in your life, as well as others.
Most recent customer reviews
I bought this to complement the reading I am doing for another course. Really enjoying it and would recommend it to othersPublished on June 16 2014 by Rebecca