Essay on Positive Psychology: A Brief History, Critics, Methodology, and Application

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Positive Psychology: A Brief History, Methodology, and Application
1. Introduction
1.1. A Brief History
The genealogy of positive psychology established its roots in the development of humanistic psychology in the mid-20th century. The more traditional approaches of modern psychology as developed by Freud and B. F. Skinner, respectively, are psychoanalysis, and behaviorism. One theory may suggest that the shift of the American labor movement from an industrial-based to a cognitive-cultural economy created the need for a more capable worker. As manufacturing and factory-style work diminished, sectors such as business, financial and personal
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2.1. Theoretical Specificity
It has been noted that the elevated activity in research into optimism and well-being has “been accompanied by an increased vagueness in the constructs used”, both, at the level of strict definition of terms, “as well as in the identification of the different components that make up the construct of well-being” (Jayawickreme, 2012). New constructs, sub-categories, and distinctions are being created and processed on an on-going basis, as research is formulated and conducted. For example, a notable distinction was made to identify the subtle differences between “hedonic well-being, and eudemonic well-being.” Subjective well-being (SWB), is defined by hedonic psychology, “as the subjective evaluation of the quality of one’s life involving both affective measures of positive affect and negative affect as well as a cognitive measure of life satisfaction” (Jayawickreme, 2012). Eudemonic well-being, on the other hand, uses constructs such as purpose, engagement, and flow, to describe the action of well-being. Simply, important yet subtle distinctions are being made in the measurement of how well an individual is ‘feeling’, as opposed to how well an individual is ‘doing’. Another example of confusion in the collection of data surrounds the relationship between happiness and money. One obstacle is the element of a strict definition of the word happiness itself, which