Wednesday, 26 March 2014

Day 76: Invisible hand

What went well? 

  1. I was right about study being homeostatic. It turns out that I actually did the perfect amount of study for the sociology of mental illness test. It went really smoothly.
  2. Martin Seligman gave a guest lecture during the Positive Psychology lecture today on what's cutting edge in positive psychology. It was pretty cool to hear about it from the father of positive psychology, and to hear his visions and perspective on the politics of well-being too. I have to say, he is pretty visionary with his outlook on the global impact of positive psychology for well-being.
  3. Got through another article & book chapter for my Buddhism research paper.
  4. Went to a free violin concert at the Penn Museum. It was very virtuosic.
  5. Finished writing my reflection on studying psychology at Melbourne. Will link to it once it's published next week!

What did I learn? 

  • Martin Seligman has an idea about the "invisible hand" increasing well-being. The idea is that if you measure the well-being of say, a company or a country, and then publicly report these findings, and hold people accountable to increasing well-being, people will find local ways to increase well-being. It creates a form of "competition" because if say medical schools report higher levels of well-being than law schools, then law schools will want to find ways to improve student well-being, lest they lose potential students to medical schools. Similarly, countries don't want to look bad I guess.
  • I really need to try and figure out how my research paper will say different things than what has already been said. My reaction to about 3 papers I've read have been: "Gahhh, can you please stop writing everything that I'm trying to argue??" People have beat me to it!! But I'm sure I can find a way to make some form of a unique contribution, no matter how small.

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