The Four Skills of Wellbeing

Brain - Four Skills of WellbeingI’ve just returned from my mindfulness study group lead by Mark Molony. Tonight we watched a video featuring Richard Davidson. He’s the professor of psychology and psychiatry at the University of Wisconsin-Madison as well as as the founder and chair of the Center for Investigating Healthy Minds at the Waisman Center.

Davidson is best known for studying the effects of meditation on the brain. And, you may have noticed that neuroscience is hot right now. And, it’s hot because the latest science is rewriting what we thought we knew about how our brains work.

The Experts Message

This video is interesting for two reasons. The first is Davidson’s expertise and the way he present his message.

Given his experience, Davidson knows a great deal about the science of the brain and he could easily have shared a lot about all the technical details. The good news is… he didn’t. This video is a great example of an expert being able to distill his message in a simple way. This is true mastery of your subject when you can speak about in multiple ways to various audiences. Now, that’s a goal worth pursuing for any expert who presents.

QUESTION: How many different ways can you talk about your area of expertise?

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The Latest Thinking

The second point of interest is his insights from the latest neuroscience research. The thesis of Davidson’s presentation is that wellbeing is a skill and there are four skills that can be learnt to improve your wellbeing. And, he’s not talking about all the usual suspect we think of with regard to wellbeing: eating, sleeping, exercising, being social, etc.

The four skills are:

  1. Resilience – bouncing back from adversity
  2. Being able to sustain Positive Emotions
  3. Generosity and caring for others
  4. Being able to maintain your Attention.

You can read more about this here on the Huffington Post. Or better yet, watch the video.

QUESTION: How do you score on these four wellbeing skills?


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