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Am Psychol. 2005 Jul-Aug;60(5):410-21.

Positive psychology progress: empirical validation of interventions.

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  • 1Positive Psychology Center, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA, USA. seligman@psych.upenn.edu

Abstract

Positive psychology has flourished in the last 5 years. The authors review recent developments in the field, including books, meetings, courses, and conferences. They also discuss the newly created classification of character strengths and virtues, a positive complement to the various editions of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (e. g., American Psychiatric Association, 1994), and present some cross-cultural findings that suggest a surprising ubiquity of strengths and virtues. Finally, the authors focus on psychological interventions that increase individual happiness. In a 6-group, random-assignment, placebo-controlled Internet study, the authors tested 5 purported happiness interventions and 1 plausible control exercise. They found that 3 of the interventions lastingly increased happiness and decreased depressive symptoms. Positive interventions can supplement traditional interventions that relieve suffering and may someday be the practical legacy of positive psychology.

PMID:
16045394
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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