The PERMA Wellbeing Model

The PERMA Wellbeing Model

The PERMA model, designed by Dr. Martin Seligman in 2011, is a simple yet comprehensive framework to measure and enhance individuals’ wellbeing. It is also used to help teams to flourish. The PERMA model has been used in the US military and in public education. Recent studies have shown a link between PERMA elements and longevity.

Below are the 5 elements of the PERMA model:

  • P | Positive Emotions – The range of positive emotions is vast. It includes, but it is not limed to, comfort, rapture, gratitude, joy, forgiveness, hope, awe and empathy. Tapping into positive emotions can help individuals to enjoy a sense of wellbeing, and improve health and relationships.
  • E | Engagement – This is about experiencing the state of flow, the mental state where we feel fully absorbed by the activity performed. Think: “being one with the music”. Discovering and applying your signature strengths is another way to experience and increase engagement. However, if you believe your current role does not allow you to apply your strengths, think again or watch this video on job crafting, for ideas on how to shape your role to better meet your own unique needs.
  • R | Relationships – The third element of the PERMA model is positive relationships. Most of us could have even better personal and professional relationships than we have now. Some people are blessed and know how to naturally build good relationships, but this is an acquired skill and it can be learnt. Active Constructive Responding (ACR) and High Quality Connections (HQC) are some of the models suggested by positive psychology for better relationships.
  • M | Meaning – This is about purpose, belonging to and serving something bigger than the Self. The more aligned our life is with our strengths and values, the more meaningful it will be.
  • A | Accomplishment – This is about self-mastery and competency. It can be driven by intrinsic or extrinsic motivation. GRIT (extreme persistence) beats IQ and talent in reaching goals. Research shows that self-discipline is twice as important as intelligence when it comes to achieving success.

Over 2.5 million people have taken the test to measure their PERMA score. All five elements are measurable and teachable.

3 Tips to Boost PERMA:

  • Gratitude Practice | Write 3 good things that happened during your day, every day.
  • Strengths | Discover your top 5 signature strengths and be sure to use them often.
  • Legacy | Complete the eulogy exercise. Write your 80th birthday speech.


To learn more:

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