27TH ANNUAL FELDMAN LECTURES
DR. MARTIN SELIGMAN
The Nature & Science of Happiness
FRIDAY, APRIL 30TH 2010
GREY NUNS COMMUNITY HOSPITAL
Dr, Seligman has published 20 books and 200 articles on motivation and personality. His best known books include
Learned Optimism; What You Can Change and What You Can’t; The Optimistic Child; and Authentic Happiness. His books
have become best sellers in the United Sates and abroad, where they have been translated into more than 16 languages.
His work has been acclaimed in the New York Times, Time, Fortune, Reader’s Digest and many others. These popular
magazines have focused on Seligman’s work and its relation to everyday people and making work a happier, more
optimistic, fulfilling place.
In 1995, while campaigning for the American Psychological Associations presidency, Dr. Seligman had a significant incident
with his 5 year old daughter Nicki. She lectured that if she could stop whining, Seligman, a born pessimist, could “stop
being a grouch”. This sudden insight gave Seligman a new outlook to the research he had been doing and he decided to
turn his attention to optimism, instead of pessimism. Dr. Seligman decided to deal with the question of what makes human
beings able to flourish. Dr. Seligman sought to create a new frontier for Psychology, one that made happiness its primary
Want to be happy? It’s pretty simple, actually. Put aside the toys. Figure out what you’re good at and then apply your
strengths to a greater purpose. And don’t forget to cultivate optimism along the way. That, in a nutshell, is what Martin
Seligman has proved scientifically in the decade since he launched a new branch of psychology, called positive psychology.
Dr. Seligman has shown through rigorous studies that psychologists and psychiatrists should invest as much in figuring out
what makes people happy as it does in studying what makes them feel blue. Sounds intuitive, perhaps but until Dr.
Seligman started exploring, there was very little science to back it up. Others had examined the question of what makes
people happy but Dr. Seligman brought an organized focus to this area of research.
Dr. Seligman received research dollars, corralled some colleagues, and set about studying it. The subject was a distinct
shift from the previous focus of his research: learned helplessness and depression. His key findings on what makes people
flourish, described in his 2002 bestseller Authentic Happiness, came down to the following. There are three levels to
happiness: pleasure, the delight you get from chocolate, fast cars, and sex; engagement, the feeling of “flow” you get when
you’re doing something you’re good at; and meaning, the fulfillment you get from being engaged in an effort greater than
yourself. Pleasure is ephemeral and contributes very little to real happiness, Dr. Seligman’s research showed. But
meaningful engagement brings lasting contentment.
Over the last few years, the field of positive psychology has exploded. More than a dozen conferences are held on the
subject every year. And more than 200 positive-psychology courses are taught at universities around the world.
Dr. Seligman has been the recipient of many awards including Literature Achievement, British Academy Wiley Prize in
Psychology; Masters Lecturer, American Psychological Association; Distinguished scientific Contribution Award, American
Psychological Association; Best Book in Clinical Medicine, Association of American Publishers; Best Psychology Book,
Books for a Better Life.
Recent Scientific and Scholarly Publication (titles) include: Zest and Work; The Observational Evaluation Of Subjective
Well Being In Patients With Rheumatoid Arthritis; Positive Psychology: Human Happiness; Positive Education (In Press);
Strengths of Character and Work; Positive Health; Strengths of Character and Posttraumatic Growth; Optimism and
Pessimism; Coaching & Positive Psychology, etc.
This education event is approved for 5 hours as an Accredited Group Learning Activity under Section 1 of the
Framework of CPD options for the Maintenance of Certification Program of the Royal College of Physicians
and Surgeons of Canada.
0730 – 0815 Registration 1200 – 1300 Lunch
0815 - 1000 Lecture 1 1300 – 1400 Lecture 3
1000 –1030 Refreshments 1400 – 1500 Meet the Professor
1030 - 1200 Lecture 2
Address Bus. Phone #
Yes, I plan to attend the Zane Feldman Lectures and Luncheon and have enclosed a cheque or money order for
$100.00 made payable to Feldman Lecture Fund. Because of the importance of Dr. Seligman’s work to the mental
health of professionals in health care, we are extending the invitation to spouses and significant others. Spouses
& significant others will be required to register and pay the listed fee.
Registration fee after April 1, 2010 is $125.00. No refunds after April 1, 2010. Please detach registration form and
return to: Grey Nuns Community Hospital, Psychiatry Program, Room 1810, 1100 Youville Drive West, Edmonton,
Alberta T6L 5X8
For further information please phone Sharon Reimer at 780-735-7145 or e-mail