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The Strength of Optimism
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A Positive Psychology Approach to Coaching


“Eagles come in all shapes and sizes,
but you will recognize them by their attitudes.”

Charles Prestwick Scott

Psychology has taken a right turn! In addition to its longtime goal of understanding and treating psychological problems, it is now in the business of scientifically studying optimal human functioning and the skills that lead to creating, enhancing and maintaining personal and professional well-being.

At long last, the field is paying very special attention to the factors and strengths that help us achieve a life filled with joy and purpose, a life imbued with hope, energy, self-confidence and personal achievement, a life in which we’re able to weather the inevitable storms that arise with grace and resilience.

This right turn is called "Positive Psychology," and it’s about the good life. The individual primarily responsible for igniting this movement is Martin Seligman, a professor at the University of Pennsylvania and past president of the American Psychological Association (APA).

During his tenure as president, Seligman heralded Positive Psychology as the APA theme of the year. And since then, there has been a groundswell of attention and energy devoted to research in this field and identification of the strengths that lead to the good life. So very exciting!

So where do we go from here? Well, first of all, you need to know that there is a lot that is right with you! Do you know your core psychological strengths? Do you know how to use them for the significant changes you would like to make? Do you know which aspects of your attitude work for you and which aspects hold you back? Positive Psychology Coaching is an approach that helps you answer these questions and build an attitudinal/behavioral repertoire for a successful journey along your own Positive Path. In the coaching relationship we will be assessing and fostering the following core strengths:

  • Courage: Facing your fears and taking the risks necessary for success
  • Optimism: Believing you are a powerful force in your future
  • Persistence: Developing patience, discipline and endurance to succeed
  • Living in the Present: Living every day to the optimum
  • Enthusiasm: Achieving and maintaining a vigorous level of excitement
  • Resilience: Bouncing back from serious adversity
  • Interpersonal Intelligence: Building healthy, rewarding relationships

By focusing on the cognitive and behavioral strategies that build strengths, a client can look forward to his or her own very personally defined path to the good life. This can be an extremely enjoyable and uplifting journey… with the right coach!