Today, I’m excited to share a positive exercise from a group of current Davidson students: Chloe deBeus, Christos Koumpotis and Rachel McLean are finishing their semester in the Davidson in Silicon Valley program. They created today’s exercise, “The Great Space,” as a capstone project for their work with Adjacent Academies in San Francisco.
Rachel shared that “we made this project because we really believe in the power of expressing gratitude and wanted to share this with everyone else. Our team has learned that, especially now, expressing what we’re grateful for is an amazing way to change our attitude and reframe negative thinking. The Great Space is a simple platform where people can reflect on these things and also widen their own perspective by reading other gratitude messages from around the world!”
I’m grateful to Chloe, Christos and Rachel for reaching out to share their project!
Today’s Experts: Chloe deBeus ‘21, Christos Koumpotis ’23 & Rachel McLean ‘22
Chloe deBeus ‘21
“I am currently a Junior at Davidson College with a Sociology major and class concentration of data science. Most of my previous work includes qualitative work, but I also value what quantitative data has to offer. I think they can both come together and offer a perspective of humanity and community. To personally learn more about the connection that the social world has to technology, I am participating in a Davidson College program in Silicon Valley in partnership with Adjacent Academies to develop code and utilize technology in an efficient way.”
Christos Koumpotis ‘23
“I grew up during the Greek economic crisis and I’ve experienced political injustice and discrimination. For that reason, I am motivated to work towards having an impact and creating a better future for young people, for my country, and for the rest of the world. My interest is to combine my study of Economics and Computer Science with my passion for Politics to build innovative solutions that contribute to changing the world into a more inclusive, forgiving and just place. I have worked with diverse and multicultural teams in Davidson, San Francisco, Paris, Dublin, and Greece. From these experiences, I have developed the ability to adapt to the needs of each environment and team, in order to inspire and foster a process that results in effective and just solutions.”
Rachel McLean ‘22
“I value resilience, creativity, and persistence, and strive to demonstrate these values in my work, as a student, and in my everyday life. I’m a current sophomore at Davidson College pursuing a major in mathematics, and a minor in gender and sexuality studies. In high school, I began to learn how to code, and this interest pushed me to study the tech industry in Silicon Valley this spring semester. While I’m here, I’m excited to learn about the intersections between mathematics and the tech industry, and discover how I can apply my tech-related skills to further social good. My unique blend of studies in a liberal arts environment brings a creative and empathetic perspective to the tech industry.”
Today’s Positive Psychology Exercise: Check Out “The Great Space”
Visit The Great Space to share what you are grateful for and to read others’ submissions. They also provide helpful “Anxiety Tips” – strategies for coping with stress.
Dickens, L. R. (2017). Using gratitude to promote positive change: A series of meta-analyses investigating the effectiveness of gratitude interventions. Basic & Applied Social Psychology, 39,(4), 193-208. https://doi.org/10.1080/01973533.2017.1323638
Abstract: Gratitude interventions have been proposed as beneficial practices for improving myriad positive outcomes, and are promoted in self-help literature. The current work examined gratitude interventions’ effects with meta-analytic techniques to synthesize findings of thirty-eight studies, totaling 282 effect sizes. Fifty-six separate meta-analyses examined outcome effects for: gratitude versus neutral comparison at postintervention and delayed follow-up; gratitude versus negative comparison at post and follow-up; and gratitude versus positive comparison at post and follow-up. Results show that gratitude interventions can lead to improvements for numerous outcomes, including happiness, but do not influence others. Their unique benefits may be overemphasized in the literature.