Positive psychology guru Barbara Fredrickson has posted an interesting article on the value of positive emotions in the light of the Obama victory:
Keep Stoking the Positivity — Our Future Depends On It
…We need positivity, the complex web of causes and consequences of positive emotions, now more than ever. Not just to sugarcoat bitter news or distract us from gloom. We need positivity because we’re different people when we’re under its influence.
Pleasant emotions like hope, inspiration, joy, and well-earned pride literally open us. As the blinders of negativity fall away, we take in more of what surrounds us. We see both the forest and the trees. We appreciate the oneness that binds us instead of the barriers that divide us. Even race becomes irrelevant.
But that’s not the half of it. Positivity’s mental openness fertilizes just the sort of creative and integrative thinking that hard-to-find solutions and compromises are made of. With the throng of problems facing our nation and our new president, we sorely need this expansive thinking. In addition, when we think broadly we discover and build new skills, new alliances, and new resilience – which make us better prepared to handle future adversity. Even mild positive emotions, experienced regularly, set people on discernable trajectories of growth, making them better off next season than they are today….