Post your response to the following: The text states that the most significant contribution positive psychology makes to the scientific study of well-being is the assessment of specific strengths. The text summarizes positive psychology as being aware that humans are both creatures and creators of their personal and social worlds. What does this statement mean to you?
This statement basically means that we are capable of changing the world that molded us into what we are. In that way, we are reactive to our environment but also reserve the ability to change that environment if we so choose. As with just about anything I think that it is important to maintain a balance between the two. If we try to control the environment too much, then we become control freaks who end up controlling everything but ourselves. If we let our environment control us too much, then we become permissive.
Do you agree that humans are creatures as well as creators of their personal and social worlds? Explain your answer.
I lean very hard towards the idea that humans are creators of their personal and social worlds. I have a saying that I have told my children all of their lives: “It is always your fault”. I am quick to explain that it is not always completely their fault; however, that there is nothing that could happen for which they could not have minimized or completed avoided by changing their actions. In short, there is always plenty of blame to go around. I find this maxim hardest to apply in my own life. For instance, if my wife and I have a spat, I find it hard to recognize that I did anything wrong. Now the next day, after I have slept, I start to think about what a butt I was. It is just difficult to have that type of foresight. I do however believe that we are in complete control of our destinies. We create ourselves every day whether we intend to or not. Think about the theme of The Matrix “Choice”. Is not the heart of the human spirit the ability to choose?
Bolt, M. (2004). Pursuing human strengths: A positive psychology guide. New York, NY: Worth Publishing.