How the Science of Well-Being is Evolving

Achieving a sense of well-being is a careful balance of many factors. Certain practices which have been encouraged by therapists in the United States are now being re-evaluated for sustained success. During the International Positive Psychology Association’s 5th World Congress the following practices were evaluated.


Living a lifestyle of gratitude is often touted as a path to well-being. However, it should be understood by therapists that gratitude is shown differently in different cultures. Simply labeling behaviors with the American version of gratitude may be counter productive for individuals from or living in other countries.

Re-Thinking Meditation

The term meditation has become a catch all which many believe lead to a greater sense of well-being. In fact there are many forms of meditation and some are proven to be more effective than others. Understanding the different types of meditation and choosing the one that best fits your needs will prove most beneficial.

Pursuing Your Passion Cautiously

Another component of well-being that has often been taught irresponsibly is the teaching that pursuing your passion will lead to greater well-being. This is only true when your passions are harmonious. Harmonious passions are those interests and pursuits which can harmoniously co-exist with the rest of your life. Obsessive passion is the evil twin brother of harmonious passion. Obsessive passion is an unhealthy fixation on an interest which will ultimately lead to self-destructive behaviors. Being able to identify the differences between pursuits which make you feel peaceful and fulfilled, as opposed to those that drive you in an unhealthy way is essential to well-being