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Creating and Disseminating Positive Psychology Interventions That Endure: Lessons from the Past, Gazing Toward the Future

  • Everett L. WorthingtonJr.Email author
Chapter

Abstract

This chapter reviews the history of development of several positive psychology interventions. I use forgiveness interventions, and specifically the REACH Forgiveness intervention, as a case study. REACH Forgiveness is described in two main formats—a psychoeducational group intervention not targeted at specific events and a general do-it-yourself workbook—and also the ways it is embedded within four other interventions. These include the Hope-focused Approach (HFA) to couple enrichment and therapy; Forgiveness and Reconciliation through Experiencing Empathy (FREE) for couples; the Dual Process model of self-forgiveness; and community-based forgiveness awareness-raising campaigns, especially within close, Christian communities. I draw on personal experience at developing positive-psychology-related interventions. Lessons are extracted regarding the creation of positive psychology interventions. Speculations are offered regarding the future of positive psychology-related interventions. These modifications in intervention practice will likely involve changes in the way interventions have been developed and marketed. Online interventions and do-it-yourself workbook interventions are specifically considered regarding forgiveness. Electronic interventions have high promise, but designing them to minimize attrition can be vexing. Speculation is offered on the reasons for attrition and ways to minimize attrition in future web-based interventions. Online interventions are available to attract people of all cultures and ethnic identities, but on the other hand, they can be tailored to only a limited number of cultures at any time. This multicultural mismatch between users and interventions must be addressed. Suggestions about how to do this are offered. General guidelines for the development of interventions in positive psychology are presented.

Keywords

Forgiveness Interventions REACH forgiveness Multicultural Website intervention Workbooks 

List of Abbreviations

REACH Forgiveness

An acrostic where R = Recall the hurt, E = Empathize with the one who inflicted the hurt, A = Altruistic gift of forgiveness, C = Commit to the forgiveness experienced, and H = Hold onto forgiveness when you doubt

HFA

Hope-focused Approach to couple enrichment and therapy

FREE

Forgiveness and Reconciliation through Experiencing Empathy

RCT

Randomized controlled trial

SD

Standard deviation

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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Virginia Commonwealth UniversityRichmondUSA

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