Flourish : a visionary new understanding of happiness and well-being /

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Bibliographic Details
Author / Creator:Seligman, Martin E. P.
Edition:1st Free Press hardcover ed.
Imprint:New York : Free Press, 2011.
Description:xii, 349 p. ; 24 cm.
Language:English
Subject:Positive psychology.
Well-being.
Satisfaction.
Positive psychology.
Satisfaction.
Well-being.
Format: Print Book
URL for this record:http://pi.lib.uchicago.edu/1001/cat/bib/8366839
Hidden Bibliographic Details
ISBN:9781439190753 (hc.) : $26.00
1439190755 (hc.) : $26.00
Notes:Includes bibliographical references and index.
Summary:Explains the four pillars of well-being--meaning and purpose, positive emotions, relationships, and accomplishment--placing emphasis on meaning and purpose as the most important for achieving a life of fulfillment.
Review by Choice Review

Positive psychology has taken root, and its branches are reaching out, seeking what is next and what is new. According to Seligman (Univ. of Pennsylvania), positive psychology's titular founder, happiness is only one part of well-being; other matters need attention too in order for the individual to attain the good life--in a word, to flourish. For psychosocial fulfillment, the author now advocates making and meeting personal goals according to a model he calls PERMA--an acronym for positive emotion (i.e., happiness), engagement, relationships, meaning, and accomplishment. Part autobiographical narrative, part revision and extension of existing constructs, and part presentation of recent theoretical and empirical innovations, Flourish is both popular (in the sense it can serve a lay audience) and polemical. Fans will find much to like here, and critics will be surprised at the author's adroitness in always moving forward, making new connections, and working to apply psychological knowledge to improve people's lives. This ten-chapter book describes some intriguing new ventures that make positive psychology more global, including teaching emotional resilience skills to the US Army and explorations in positive education among grammar school students in Australia. Summing Up: Recommended. All readers. D. S. Dunn Moravian College

Copyright American Library Association, used with permission.
Review by Publisher's Weekly Review

Seligman, a psychology professor at the University of Pennsylvania and the guru of the "positive psychology" movement, abandons his previous emphasis on happiness, which he now views as simplistic, to examine how individuals might achieve a richer, multilayered goal: a life of well-being. He identifies four factors that can help individuals thrive: positive emotion, engagement with what one is doing, a sense of accomplishment, and good relationships. Those expecting a guide on how to achieve these goals will be disappointed; Seligman's approach is largely conceptual and empirical, although he has some useful things to say, such as how even soldiers with PTSD can be taught resilience to recover and even grow from their traumas, and how students of all ages can be taught focus, delayed gratification, and GRIT, a combination of drive and perseverance. But Seligman includes too much on the mechanics of conducting his studies. Also, he can be self-congratulatory regarding his own theory, and harsh and reductionist on traditional treatments ("psychology-as-usual-the psychology of victims and negative emotions and alienation and pathology and tragedy"). This is a potentially important book whose impact may be limited by its flaws. (Apr.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
Review by Library Journal Review

Former president of the division of clinical psychology of the American Psychological Association, Seligman (psychology, Univ. of Pennsylvania) wrote the book on positive psychology. Here, he goes beyond his previous volumes (Learned Optimism; Authentic Happiness) by explaining how to achieve well-being by mastering its components-positive emotions, engagement, relationships, meaning and purpose, and accomplishment. Seligman expands his prescription for personal happiness and demonstrates how teaching resiliency to young people, those in the armed services, and business personnel has helped them overcome trauma and flourish in their environments. Seligman includes over 40 pages of annotated bibliography, websites, and interviews. This is particularly helpful for people who want to know why learned optimism works and the variety of venues in which it has been successful. (c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

(c) Copyright Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Review by Kirkus Book Review

The former president of the American Psychological Association repaves the path to true happiness.Seligman (Authentic Happiness, 2002, etc.) parlays his 20-year experience studying and applying theories about personal contentment into an instructional book on personal growth through affirmative, upbeat reinforcementa continuance of the author's "positive psychology" movement. The author surprisingly admits that the word happiness has become virtually meaningless because of its rampant overuse in contemporary society, and he focuses on the promotion of individual well-being. Promoting these concepts in schools and the armed forces ("resilience training") could be a key element, he writes, in the advancement of happiness in youth and those consistently engaged in difficult, demanding situations. Seligman discredits the rampant overuse of anti-depressants in the administration of "biological psychiatry," advocating instead for increased curative efforts rather than temporary symptom suppression. Utilizing interactive exercises, case histories and examples from everyday life (health and wealth factors), the author energetically coaches those interested in self-improvement and personal growth. But is acquiring happiness such a complex, theoretical accomplishment? Seligman believes so and never wavers in his belief in a well-honed, systematic process of managed satisfaction. Though certain sections become garrulous and repetitive, graphs, charts and tables offer refreshingly visual proof of the success of his model, including a reprint of his "Signature Strengths Test." An elusive quality for some, a natural condition for others, happiness, Seligman avows, is a priceless emotion to cultivate and preserve.A relentlessly optimistic guidebook on finding and securing individual happiness.]] Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

Copyright (c) Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.
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