Karen Schaal on stairs in mall CU red back

About Karen Schaal

We are Karen and Marcel Schaal, the husband and wife team behind Positive Online Psychology. Being pilots, our interest in aviation brought us into the military at a young age; Marcel into the German Air Force, Karen into the American Army. We met while training at Fort Rucker, Alabama, USA, and have been working on collaborative projects ever since.

Our experience in audio recording brought us into the world of reality television, where we worked for numerous years in producing, audio supervision, and casting.  Positive Psychology piqued our interest during this time, and we became involved in the most popular intervention found in Positive Psychology – the practice of gratitude. Karen began her doctoral studies on the topic and working on People Owned Psychology.

SCIENCE & Gratitude

Self-help backed by SCIENCE & gratitude, a holistic approach to happiness and well-being, featuring evidence-based solutions to real-world problems.

       I came across gratitude in my doctoral work. It was new for me to think that you could research emotions, but that was the reality I discovered, and the positive emotion of gratitude was one of the most popular topics to research, in the new field of positive psychology.

       Amazingly enough, researchers, academics, educators, health care professionals, and even those in business were agreeing across the globe - that gratitude had the capacity to positively impact, both emotions and behaviors.

       The expression of gratitude as a simplistic ‘thank you’, had given away to a description of gratitude as a positive modifier, with countless benefits, a complex emotion supported by theory, and a societal lubricant that appeared to be at the foundation of highly functioning and flourishing societies. This was the gratitude I researched. A highly effective, highly researched, and effective tool for personal transformation.

       This is the science component of my approach to happiness and well-being. The world of quantitative research, statistics, analyses, and outcomes. A black and white world of data and numbers that indicated, if something was going to work or not. A world of dry discussions on theories and guidelines, and why’s and why not's, that provided me with just the right kind of understanding to try this ‘gratitude’ stuff on myself.

       And what I discovered was that the research had led me in the right direction and that the information that science had provided me was priceless. I also discovered that the practice of gratitude was actually much more involved than the research had indicated and that an authentic practice of gratitude, a life orientation to appreciation, was what actually fueled my personal transformation.

       Understanding how things work is really useful when you are trying to understand the process of change. This is about us wanting to claim our brilliance. To flourish and thrive.

       The combination of this understanding and an authentic application of gratitude in one’s life, is I believe, to be the most powerful tool we have for positive transformation.

Thanks for being here and Welcome.

Karen Schaal/gratitude gal  Ms, PhDc