What helps you Flourish?

» Posted by on Aug 26, 2017 in blog

Having recently returned from the International Positive Psychology (IPPA) conference in Montreal, I am filled with fresh research information and inspiration from new and practical findings in this exciting field.  At the start of this conference, Dr. Martin Seligman inspired the 1,300 people in attendance with the idea that every few centuries, an idea comes about that sweeps every aspect of humanity and that idea now is that we have the capacity to bring about the flourishing of human beings.  

One of the highlights of this conference was the session from Dr. Kim Cameron on positive energy as applied to positive leadership.  Having brought the concept of relational energy in the corporate world as a consultant, Cameron was able to demonstrate that when a company embraces a positively energizing style of leadership, not only the performance but the engagement level goes up significantly.  Moreover, the level of positive emotions was also measured and it was found that gratitude, support, compassion, meaningfulness, dignity and respect were all increased in the corporate culture and daily lives of employees. 

Cameron pointed out that the main dynamic involved in positive leadership is the heliotropic effect; a hypothesis that humans, organizations and cultures tend to orient towards positivity, like flowering plants turn towards the sun. If we are to flourish in our personal and professional lives, we are wise to seek out the people who are energizers; those who tend to uplift us and influence us towards our optimal potential.  Likewise, we can develop our own levels of positivity by cultivating attention toward emotions such as gratitude, joy, purposefulness and all that contributes to inspiring and motivating ourselves and others.

 Off course, this does not mean that we are to deny or ignore adversity or challenging situations in our lives.  Rather, it means that we allow ourselves to feel whatever we naturally feel in each moment while refraining from dwelling on, or worrying about, unpleasant or difficult events we may be going through.  Seeing emotions as clouds in the sky of a serene mind, for example, would enable us to let them go through, knowing the vastness of the sky is always there as the optimal state of mind: spaciousness. During the IPPA conference, some of the results of studies showed that following hardships and trauma, some people come to experience post-traumatic growth, another expression of embracing life-affirming positivity.  More about this in an upcoming blog.

If you want to further harness your capacity to become better anchored in positivity and experience more positive emotions that will also fuel your personal and professional success, contact me for a complementary consultation.  In that conversation, you would learn more about how a series of coaching session could support you to truly flourish and reach your next level of happiness.