Tuesday, February 10, 2015

I am two papers away from completing my doctorate in Positive Psychology! What’s Positive Psychology? Is it important to the story of Redemption’s Warrior? Will Positive Psychology help our main character Christopher, stranded on a prison island, sixty miles southwest from Mazatlan, find his freedom? One thing is for sure, despite Christopher’s training in martial arts he will not be able to fight his way out of prison. He will have to find another way.

How will Positive Psychology help Christopher? Positive Psychology asks the questions: What is right with your world? What are your personal strengths? How can you build on your strengths to create well-being? Positive Psychology is the science of well-being.

Three kinds of behavior will design your version of happiness. The first behavior is fun; hanging out with friends, dancing, going to a party and having the time of your life. It’s a simple as noticing, savoring, your good times. Even in tough times we have good moments to savor.

The next strand in the braid of happiness identifies your personal strengths. How do you find personal strengths? You know, the times when you are lost in your task and time flies by. Think Jennifer Lopez. Last year she had tough times but she used her strengths, dancing and singing, and went on a world tour. It changed a bad time into good.

For me, I lose myself under the spell of writing and when I look up the entire morning has disappeared, or I look up and it’s 3AM. Before my back surgery I lost myself in gut wrenching, wring your hair out with sweat, yoga. I walked the razors edge between what I knew I could do and what was beyond my abilities. After twelve years of daily practice it was fantastic fun. You might find these spells, these moments, in a variety of activities. In sports it’s called ‘the zone.’ Part of happiness is figuring out what personal strengths put you in the zone. Do it every day.

Lastly Positive Psychology says you are not really happy without making efforts to please the important people in your life. Think Jennifer Lopez again. Every time she goes out on stage she inspires millions. Fans say she inspires them to live their dreams. Try it. It will be fun. You’ll find savoring, getting in the zone, and sharing yourself in a way that benefits others is good for you too.

Will you find Positive Psychology embedded in the story of Redemption’s Warrior? You bet. Our main character, Christopher, survives the nightmare of prison, in part, using his personal strengths. He finds chickens, makes a farm, and sells eggs. This is just one way to stay out of trouble and earn money. Money he needs to fund his escape.

He finds ways to make life better for everyone. He barbeques chickens, food that nourishes inmates. The prison zombie look flees with Christopher’s good food. Yes, you’ll find Positive Psychology embedded in Christopher’s plans to escape. It is the foundation of practical mysticism. Want to know more? Read Redemption's Warrior.


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