Applying Positive Psychology
IMAGINE...What if we cultivated spaces to nurture our human connections?
What if we focused on people’s strengths and the strength of the whole, to catalyze social change?
What if we asked, what gives life to our community when it is most alive? What energizes us?
How can we “wake up” our appreciative eye to see our abundance of strengths? What would be possible if we changed our communities collective inner dialogue?
BREAD draws upon the research from Positive Psychology, such as:
- Self determination theory, which looks at how to create conditions that support intrinsic motivation,
- What contributes to high quality connections between individuals
- How to capitalize on positive emotions to build a reservoir of resilience to sustain people through adversities
- Invoking wonder and focusing on what we want to create more of through the methodology of Appreciative Inquiry.
- Much thought has been put towards supporting self efficacy, both individual and collective, nurturing individuals and group’s belief in their ability to accomplish a goal
- Ultimately, all of our programs are designed with psychological and existential well-being in mind.
Broaden and Build Theory
Positive Emotions Create Upward Spirals
At BREAD, we use Dr. Barbara Fredrickson’s research on positive emotions and her “broaden-and-build theory”.
This theory has greatly influenced the emphasis that we place on making sure that BREAD is a place where everyone in attendance, from speakers to attendees to staff, leave feeling inspired, proud and hopeful. There is emerging and expanding research led by Fredrickson and other psychologists on the role of positive emotions in our life. Positive emotions include love, interest, hope, pride, gratitude, amusement, inspiration, awe, serenity, and joy.
*Image on the left can be found here, on the blog StrengthsMining.