Saturday, November 8, 2008

Positive Psychology & Happiness

I had the good fortune to attend the New York State Association of Independent Schools (NYSAIS) Annual Heads' Conference this past week. One of the speakers - new to me - was Shawn Achor. He teaches the most popular course at Harvard, "Positive Psychology," and is the winner of more than a dozen distinguished teaching awards at that university. From the very beginning, the entire room was enthralled with his smile, delivery, and what he had to say. For example, he cited the following findings gathered from his research:

  • 50% of Harvard students are below average.
  • Grade point average does not correlate with happiness.
  • Only 25% of job success is based on IQ.
  • The ratio of negative to positive research is 17 to 1.
  • Happiness is a precursor to success not the result of it.
See for yourself. Click on this video and listen to him for nine minutes, and if you get the chance see him deliver his important, uplifting message in person, be sure to attend.

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