A brief introduction to PMA, the science behind it and it’s benefits for children
Firstly, What is PMA?
Not to be confused with PMS Where the experience does not usually correlate with positivity. PMA stands for Positive Mental Attitude and is the practical application of positive psychology – the scientific study of the strengths that enable individuals and communities to thrive.
PMA is therefore supported by decades of rigorous study and proven practical applications.
In a fast-changing world where mental health and wellbeing are more important than ever, PMA has taken centre stage for good reason.
Strengths to Thrive
PMA’s focus on the strengths that enable communities and individuals to thrive, is the fundamental reason why developing these strengths in children is the secret to their wellbeing.
Historically, the field of psychology was mainly focused on the ‘illness ideology’ i.e, the treatment of illness and prevention of disease or ‘what is wrong with you?’; however, pioneers such as Martin Seligman and Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi, recognised that by improving people’s strengths ‘what is right with you and what you do well’, rather than focus on their weaknesses, provided people with the tools they needed to buffer themselves against illness.
Benefits of developing a PMA (to name a few)
- Improves social skills and the ability to build and maintain relationships
- Improves Academic success
- Reduces anxiety & depression
- Increases life span
- Greater resistance to the common cold
- Improves Self & Esteem
- Improves Confidence
- Better coping skills and resilience to adverse events
- Better cardiovascular health
- Better overall quality of life
It is important to note that these benefits are not only realised during childhood, but will serve children well into their adult years throughout their entire life journey.
As written in the Handbook of Positive Psychology.
Consider this… Imagine a planet where the inhabitants are self-absorbed, hopeless, and filled with psychological problems and weaknesses. Confusion, anxiety, fear, and hostility race through their minds. These creatures “communicate” with each other by lying, faking, torturing, fighting, and killing. They hurt each other, and they hurt themselves. Of course, this imaginary planet is not far away—we call it Earth. Although these problems do exist, they are made to loom even larger because of the propensities of psychology and its sister disciplines to focus on the weaknesses in humankind. Now let us imagine another planet where the inhabitants are caring, hopeful, and boundless in their psychological strengths. Their thoughts and feelings are clear, focused, and tranquil. These creatures communicate by spending time talking and listening to each other. They are kind to each other and to themselves. Again, this imaginary, not-so-far- away planet is Earth. These positive descriptions aptly fit many of the people on Earth. In this regard, hardly anyone (including some cynics) quibbles with this latter conclusion. But no science, including psychology, looks seriously at this positive side of people. It is this latter troubling void that positive psychology addresses.
C. R. Snyder Shane J. Lopez
WHY JOIN THE PMA KIDS COMMUNITY
By strengthening the mental health of children, whilst also supporting the other not less important, but well-known areas such as safety, security, financial support and academia, we support the whole child both mentally and physically.
With our resources for parents and children, PMA Kids ltd aims to develop key strengths from early childhood by bridging the gap between years of positive psychology and child development study and the mainstream public.
Snyder, C. R., & Lopez, S. J. (Eds.). (2002). Handbook of positive psychology. Oxford University Press.
Seligman, M. (2011). Flourish: A visionary new understanding of Happiness and Well-being. New York, Atria Paperback.
All information posted is merely for educational and informational purposes. It is not intended as a substitute for professional advice. Should you decide to act upon any information on this website, you do so at your own risk.