Wellbeing Initiatives

Bringing Out the Best in Youth, Our Communities, and Ourselves

Wellbeing Promotion is the core commitment of Optimist International Nepal, which is rooted in our primary purpose of developing optimism as a philosophy of life. As part of the commitment, the organization has adopted a set of strategies, collectively known as Wellbeing Initiatives, designed to assist individuals in cultivating wellbeing and achieving fulfilling lives.

Wellbeing has long been a subject of philosophical and scientific inquiry, as it is central to human life and flourishing. In recent years, there has been a growing recognition of its significance, both at individual and societal levels. This is particularly true since the United Nations adopted the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in 2015, with SDG 3 specifically aimed at ensuring healthy lives and promoting wellbeing for all at all ages.

The Wellbeing Initiatives structured by Optimist International Nepal is primarily based on Martin E. P. Seligman’s PERMA model of wellbeing, which is a fundamental framework of Positive Psychology* grounded in the concept of Learned Optimism**. The PERMA model provides a simple and immediately applicable approach to cultivating wellbeing and promoting human flourishing.

Positive Education Movement, Constructive Journalism Movement, and Childhood Health & Wellness Program are the primary components of Wellbeing Initiatives of Optimist International Nepal. Positive Education and Constructive Journalism both draw inspiration from the science of Positive Psychology and aim to spread optimism, build hope and resilience, and support individuals and communities to flourish. The Childhood Health & Wellness Program is the signature program of Optimist International to promote health and wellness among young people. Within the broader framework of this program, Optimist International Nepal has designed projects that are primarily focused on promoting psychosocial health among adolescents, and serve as the foundation for the Wellbeing Initiatives. Collectively, the initiative intends to promote healthy lives and wellbeing in line with Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

*Positive Psychology is the scientific study of the factors that enable individuals and communities to flourish. The goal of positive psychology, including the PERMA model, is to equip people with scientifically proven psychosocial skills and encourage them to discover and nurture their character strengths & virtues. Positive psychology interventions allow individuals to shift their focus from negativity towards optimism and an upbeat outlook leading to improved wellbeing, and flourishing life.

Traditionally, a major focus of psychology has been to relieve human suffering . . . relieving suffering, however, is not the same as flourishing. People want to thrive, not just survive . . . The skills that build flourishing are different from the skills that alleviate suffering (Positive Psychology Center, 2022).

**Learned optimism is a concept that refers to the belief that individuals can learn to cultivate a more optimistic mindset through their interpretation of events and experiences. Learned optimism involves a shift in thinking patterns from negative and pessimistic to positive and optimistic. It is based on the idea that optimism can be learned through the acquisition of specific skills and strategies. People who exhibit learned optimism tend to view setbacks and failures as temporary, specific, and changeable, rather than permanent and pervasive. They also tend to attribute success to their own abilities and efforts, rather than external factors or luck. However, it is important to note that learned optimism is not about denying or ignoring the shadow side and negative experiences, but rather about reframing them in a more constructive and solution-oriented manner. Overall, learned optimism is a powerful tool for building resilience and improving wellbeing.

If you would like to participate in this initiative in one way or another, we kindly request that you consider sending an email to wellbeing@optimist.org.np. We would be delighted to have you as a part of our community.