Spot Strengths Everywhere


    You’ve been practicing spotting strengths in yourself and others that you’ve observed in the past. But let’s make this practice part of your future daily routine by downloading and regularly completing this worksheet
    Type of StrengthsSpotting: Self or Others Activity Character Strengths Spotted Rationale/Evidence for Strengths Spotted Emotions Felt/ New Learning Self E-mailing a friend Hope; social intelligence My friend was struggling with a problem. My message was empathic to her feelings (social intelligence) and optimistic (hopeful) because I pointed out several of her positive qualities. I felt joy as I offered support and felt gratitude that she’d shared her problem with me. I learned that I use social intelligence much more often than I realize!
    Your strengths-spotting practice is starting to move at full tilt! Now, in order to become even more well rounded with your strengths fluency, personal understanding, and applications, let’s reverse the process by turning to others’ views of your strengths. Build in the Views of Others Another means of employing strengths-spotting is to place yourself on the receiving end of the lens of others. What character strengths are others spotting in you? Learning from others is a crucial way to further explore your character strengths. There are always insights that emerge from this kind of learning, because sometimes others know more about us than we do ourselves! Think back to the conversation between Lisa and Emily, for instance, in which Emily didn’t seem to know she was brave. It would never have occurred to her to think of herself or to describe herself that way. But all it took to wake Emily up to this quality in herself was for Lisa to spot it and cite an example or two. Emily walked away with a “revised” vision of herself. The best way to attain this kind of input from others, in a formal way, is to use what’s called a “360° form.” This is a standard way of providing feedback in top organizations around the world. Rather than gathering feedback from only one source, it involves each employee receiving feedback from multiple sources in their work environment, not only their boss/ supervisor, but also subordinates, colleagues, and customers. Each of these sources provides feedback to the employee on how they perceive their work performance, which yields a comprehensive portrait. Why not take this approach with character strengths? I asked myself. So I developed a Character Strengths 360° tool that is very simple to use but provides valuable insights into your best qualities (Niemiec 2014, 2018). It extends far beyond the workplace into your family, social, and community life. It has been used by thousands of people worldwide and is a favorite activity among people trying to improve their character strengths awareness and use. You can download the full version at http://www.newharbinger.com/42808. Learn. Practice. SHARE. In this chapter, you’ve learned about different methods, examples, and practices surrounding strengths-spotting. You’ve explored a range of paths for implementing strengths-spotting in your daily life, which is an important, lifelong skill you can continue to hone and deploy. You’ve also woven in the strengths-spotting that others can offer you and how you might look at others’ observations in relation to your own self-perceptions.
    Before moving on, consider this: What is most important for you to take away from this chapter? What is most important to share with others right now? Consider sharing an insight, a strengths-spotting practice, or a new goal with one person in your life. You might go to the movies with a friend and mutually engage in strengths-spotting of the lead character. You might spot someone’s strengths on a social media platform and encourage others to do the same. Explore your “share” below and note with whom you will connect:
    In every interaction you have with people—day after day, month after month—you spot at least one character strength. You notice your partner’s critical thinking ability when he uses logic to analyze a difficult situation you tell him about. You see his social intelligence when he empathizes with your feelings. You see the curiosity in a neighborhood child as she asks you questions about your home and leadership in another child as he organizes a group of kids to play a game. You see kindness in the grocery store clerk as she thoughtfully packs your items. In each of these scenarios, you point out the person’s positive quality and express your appreciation for their use of it. You even see strengths in animals, noticing the zest of a dog jumping around while being walked outside and the prudence of a cat that carefully steers away from the dog to its safety. Everywhere you look—on pages and on screens, in the break room and at the dinner table—you are spotting character strengths in each person and each interaction. And it doesn’t stop there. You are also expressing your own strengths in each situation of your life. You use your curiosity, kindness, and social intelligence to ask people about the good things in their lives, give a listening ear when they are suffering, and offer support whenever possible. You use self-regulation and prudence to organize your home and make a positive environment for your family, creativity as you cook interesting and healthy meals, gratitude as you offer heartfelt thanks at the end of each day, teamwork as you collaborate with your partner to handle stress and conflicts together. You are conscious of these character strengths, bringing them forth deliberately and with purpose throughout each day
    You do all of this imperfectly, as best you can. You realize that this strengths work is an ongoing process that evolves and deepens over time. In this scenario, you are expressing, spotting, and discussing a wide range of positive human qualities. Noticing and using character strengths have become habits. But it’s more than simply a strengths routine. You have unleashed strengths in yourself and in the world. You have become these strengths. You are curiosity and kindness and gratitude. 
    Wadifa Club
    writer and blogger, founder of Dog food planet .

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