Character Strengths Matter: How to Live a Full Life (Positive Psychology News)
Publisher: Positive Psychology News
ISBN 10: 0692465642
ISBN 13: 978-0692465646
What are the elements of good character? The Values in Action (VIA) project identified 24 qualities such as creative, authentic, loving, forgiving, kind, persistent, prudent, and brave, calling them character strengths. Character strengths are elements of good character valued across time and around the world. If you are curious about your own strengths, join the 3 million people that have taken the free online survey at www.viacharacter.org. Character Strengths Matter: How to Live a Full Life brings the 24 character strengths to life with stories involving children, teenagers, adults, and elders and occurring in family life and business settings, in the present and in the distant past, in locations from China to the United States to the Middle East. Research shows that using character strengths in new ways for a week makes people happier up to six months later. This book includes many ideas for using your character strengths in new ways. Based on the unusual premise that a key way to build strength is to act ‘as if’ you have that strength already, this book includes short passages to read aloud to try on particular character strengths. This concept is well known to actors and elite athletes, but less well known to the rest of the world. Look inside the book to see whose words are used to embody hope, gratitude, leadership, creativity, kindness, love and all the rest. More than 30 authors contributed stories to this book, including George Vaillant, the 35-year director of Harvard's Study of Adult Development. Many leaders in the positive psychology field endorse the book, including the ‘father of positive psychology’ Dr. Martin E. P. Seligman. He writes: “My friend, Chris Peterson, would have loved this book. It brings to life with personal stories, practical recommendations, wisdom, and humor the dry scholarship that he (with an assist from me) did in Character Strengths and Virtues. Chris was very down-to-earth and I am sure he would have concurred in my enthusiastically recommending this book to everyone who works with character strengths in the real world.” ~ Martin E. P. Seligman, author of Authentic Happiness and Flourish Proceeds from the sale of this book will be donated to a scholarship at the University of Pennsylvania in honor of the lead researcher of character strengths, the late Christopher Peterson. This scholarship supports the education of future practitioners of positive psychology. This is the third book in the Positive Psychology News series, joining Resilience: How to Navigate Life's Curves and Gratitude: How to Appreciate Life's Gifts. Bottom line, this book is bound to make you learn something new, be inspired about humanity and have a chance to play with character strengths. This book will make you happier.
"My friend, Chris Peterson, would have loved this book. It brings to life with personal stories, practical recommendations, wisdom, and humor the dry scholarship that he (with an assist from me) did in Character Strengths and Virtues. Chris was very down-to-earth and I am sure he would have concurred in my enthusiastically recommending this book to everyone who works with character strengths in the real world."
~ Martin E. P. Seligman, author of Authentic Happiness and Flourish.
"I wish Christopher Peterson were alive to read this book. He would have been proud and grateful. This wonderful book beautifully weaves together art and science, reason and passion, theory and practice--and the outcome is an accessible and rigorous guide that can help us fulfill our potential for success and happiness. It brings Peterson's work on strengths to life!"
~ Dr. Tal Ben-Shahar, author of Happier, The Pursuit of Perfect, and Choose the Life You Want
"This is what is so stunning about this book: it's the best experiential or applied introduction to the psychology of human strengths that I've seen. I learned from this book by performing it, not just reading it. This tiny volume has magic in it."
~ Dr. David L. Cooperrider, Case Western Reserve University, The David L. Cooperrider Center for Appreciative Inquiry at Champlain College
"This is an extraordinary book- it includes the latest research on character strengths but goes beyond that. It provides five practice guidelines applicable to each strength and provides monologues, poems, and speeches that realistically illustrate each strength. Polly and Britton have provided a tremendous service to the field of positive psychology and positive education by combining scholarship, practice, and illustrations in a way that has not appeared heretofore. I highly recommend this book."
~ Dr. Kim Cameron, author of Positive Leadership and Developing Management Skills.
"This is among the best books in all of positive psychology. It takes one of the most important areas of research -- the character strengths -- and makes it as accessible, as practical, and as inspiring as could be. I particularly love that it is written for sharing. Every couple and every family should have a copy. This will become my standard dinner party gift, instead of a bottle of wine."
~ Dr. Jonathan Haidt, New York University, author of The Righteous Mind and The Happiness Hypothesis
From the Author
This book is dedicated to the memory of Christopher Peterson, a pioneer in the study of character strengths, a mentor for students of character, an exemplar of humor, humility, love, and kindness, and a good friend.
May the seeds you planted continue to grow and prosper.
~ Shannon Polly and Kathryn Britton