Adaptive mental mechanisms. Their role in a positive psychology.

  title={Adaptive mental mechanisms. Their role in a positive psychology.},
  author={George E. Vaillant},
  journal={The American psychologist},
  volume={55 1},
Psychology needs a metric for positive mental health that would be analogous to the IQ tests that measure above-average intelligence. The Defensive Function Scale of the DSM-IV offers a possible metric. In the present article the author links the transformational qualities of defenses at the mature end of the Defensive Function Scale--altruism, suppression, humor, anticipation, and sublimation--to positive psychology. First, the methodological problems involved in the reliable assessment of… CONTINUE READING