Leonie Ascone Michelis, clinical psychologist at the University Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf, Neuronal Plasticity Research Group
For many years, there has been a call for psychiatry and other helping or educational institutions to devote more attention to the mechanisms of (mental) health, happiness and resilience (psychological resistance). Positive Psychology focuses on exactly these aspects. It accompanies people with great openness in their "search for themselves". Crises are seen as part of life - as is the human ability to cope with them. Instead of a deficiency or deficit orientation, strengthening aspects of the person and situation that offer active coping or development opportunities are emphasized. Character strengths (Paul Seligmann) describe positive personality traits, independent of social norms (e.g., social status or possessions). Derived from virtue ethics (including Aristotle, Thomas Aquinas), cross-cultural studies as well as theories of personality psychology, six superordinate strength areas were derived: Wisdom & Knowledge, Courage, Love & Humanity, Justice, Temperance, Spirituality & Transcendence. With the help of a scientific framework, character strengths can be measured and further "trained". These and other perspectives of Positive Psychology will be presented in more detail and illustrated in a practical way during the lecture.