Staying positive while being negative during covid

Being positive is great! At least, when we’re not talking about covid tests, then it’s better to be negative. The difference between being positive or negative is not just important when it comes to medical tests, but also when it comes to the mentality of an individual during these difficult covid times and whether he or she tries to stay positive, despite all the negativity that accompanies covid-19.

Seligman et al. (2005) tested five happiness interventions in order to examine their effects on happiness. They conducted a 6-group, random-assigned and placebo- controlled internet study, in which they tested the five happiness interventions and one control exercise.

Throughout the six months researches periodically measured symptoms of happiness (Steen Happiness Index) and depression (Beck Depression Inventory). After these six months they concluded that 3 of the interventions lastingly increased happiness and decreased depressive symptoms.

Signature strengths in a new way (use character strengths in a new and different way) and three good things (write down three things that went well each day and their cause) increased happiness and decreased depressive symptoms over the period of six months. Whereas gratitude visit (write and deliver letter of gratitude), caused large positive changes for one month.

The findings support the idea of positive interventions as being able to supplement traditional interventions that aim to relieve suffering. To that end this research has shed a light on the importance of positive interventions within positive psychology as well as society.


Seligman, M. E. P., Steen, T. A., Park, N., & Peterson, C. (2005). Positive Psychology Progress: Empirical Validation of Interventions. American Psychologist, 60(5), 410–421.

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