Using Positive Psychology Every Day

Presentation at the International Congress of Positive Psychology


In the summer of 2015 Sarah ran a workshop at the International Congress of Positive Psychology.


Be practical - using positive psychology everyday

This highly interactive workshop was focused on helping people understand how they could use positive psychology everyday in existing activities. In the session she identified opportunities for intervention such as: coaching, performance appraisal, meetings, exit interviews, project groups, strategy development, changes processes, team briefing, recruitment, surveys (customers, staff), customer interactions, commissioning and contracting, cost cutting and redundancies, restructuring.

Then she introduced 20 positive psychology ideas that could be used with these opportunities to create a positive psychology experience:

  1. Positivity
  2. Engagement
  3. Flourishing
  4. Resilience
  5. Flow
  6. Psychological capital
  7. Collective intelligence
  8. Authentic leadership
  9. Affirmation
  10. High quality connections
  11. Strengths
  12. Generativity
  13. Connectivity
  14. Mindfulness
  15. Positive energy networks
  16. Virtuous practices
  17. Positive deviance
  18. Social capital
  19. Appreciative Inquiry
  20. Creating abundance.

She used the  Positive Organisational Development card packs to help people new to positive psychology to quickly grasp these key concepts so they could engage with the practical exercise to follow. She talked about different ways of working with the cards in organisations such as

Stimulating discussions in groups

Discovery of current situation

Exploration of culture and values

Present need, Future Need

Base line culture measurement 1-10 scale

Personal development

Prioritizing for investment in development


Then it was over to the group to…

‘In turn, thinking about your own work situation or work challenges – and what is reverberating for you from the conference – select a particular card/concept and explore with colleagues how this is particularly relevant to you/your situation –how more of it will make a positive difference.

Explore the questions for yourselves, see what they generate. Come up with better ones – or ones that work better in your context.

Discuss the guidance, add to it.

Explore how you can turn your thinking into a positive action step using the trio -  opportunity, courage, plan.'


The card packs were raffled off at the end of the session to great delight amongst the audience! Many people commented on how it was a very useful session to have to help sort and organise the information they had been accumulating over the conference.