One month to inspire and rise

[EXERCISE] Optimism works in virtuous circles. To see someone who shows altruism, kindness or generosity positively impacts our morale. Inspiring readings, good actions or beautiful encounters are all ways to help us feel good!

Ilios Kotsou Flavia Mazelin Salvi

To behave in a generous and selfless way is good. We all have already experienced one day. What we generally do not know is that the mere fact of witnessing acts of courage, kindness or generosity has a very important positive impact. This triggers in us what is called an "elevation emotion". We feel empowered by what we have just seen and who calls on the best of ourselves. Numerous scientific studies1 have been conducted on this emotion. They have shown that it inspires optimism, makes us want to behave better, and encourages us to posit altruistic and positive acts in our turn.


During this month, I propose to cultivate different ways of feeling the emotion of elevation. The best is probably to be open to what is happening around you, attentive to acts of kindness and generosity, and observe your feelings. You can also read inspirational stories - biographies of people like Nelson Mandela or Gandhi, stories of individual surpassing. Also try to focus on beauty in all its manifestations - art or nature. Here are some questions to guide you: What kind of act (s) of goodness have you witnessed today? What are the people and behaviors that inspire you? What are the landscapes or works that affect you? You can bring a notebook and record each day an experience that has caused an emotion of elevation.

The Testimony

Gerard, 43, Trader

"I am socially involved, but I realized that I was starting to become bitter and negative, just reading bad news," I took a moral blow, so I decided to do a "cure of elevation." For three weeks, I put together a program of readings, meetings and inspiring visits. energy, confirmed my altruistic penchant and also encouraged me to participate more concretely in a better world.I invested myself in an apolitical citizen movement and in an active and citizen school.Reived active, I feel more useful and happy. "

1. The Journal of Positive Psychology, 2016.

==> Test yourself!

Between optimism and pessimism, where do you stand?

"God is dead, Marx is dead, and I do not feel very well myself ..." Woody Allen once said.You tend to approach life on the bright side and not be lured by the daily hassle. But are you a real optimist or finally quite pessimistic about life in general?

Take this test to find out.


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