Learning about Strengths
Please hold your breath for as long as you can while reading this article. If you would happen to have a very heavy object that you could drape on your neck while reading that would be a bonus. The reason you should do this is
If you are a skeptical reader you probably want me to supply lots of scientific evidence that positive emotions are good for you. Even if I did you would probably still think ‘I am not convinced’. Isn’t it interesting that you think you have a critical, no nonsense mind yet are 90% unlikely to be able to think of an actual study which showed that positive emotions make people dumb, narcissistic or shallow? You might be able to recall someone who a) annoyed you and b) also happened to be a happy person but that my friend is not very scientific. However you are almost certain read more …
Can you relate to this feeling? You are sitting somewhere, let’s say the office or the library and suddenly a sound that you didn’t notice before just stops. You didn’t consciously think about it, it never bothered you but suddenly you feel this surprising sense of relief.
Now did you ever happen to work or study in an environment which has usually a steady stream of background hum but doesn’t because nobody but you is there? read more …
It is no coincidence that people know so much more about their weaknesses than their strengths. These seven misunderstandings have a lot to do with that. Once you address them in your mind you are free to explore your strengths.
You don’t have to leave your computer to use your strengths or at least not just yet. Check out and try out some of the suggestions below. Or you could devise your very own online strengths experiment. Something that occurred to me recently was that random acts of kindness lend themselves very well to online activities. So I now try to bundle different things together and just spend 30 minutes to one hour filling out surveys, writing reviews of products I like, signing petitions for things I find important, etc. It’s a win-win situation because the other party involved appreciates your help while you get a happiness boost out of these little kindnesses. If you have additional ideas or want to share your experiences comment below.
Learning to manage your strengths is not just about doing certain things more often. Before we can do that it is necessary to make space in our life by identifying the things that take energy away from us and doing them less. While people like to take this concept on board with things they don’t like doing that much anyway, sometimes questions arise when tests such as the Realise2 strengths assessment state that ‘gratitude’ or ‘optimism’ is a learned behaviour and should therefore be performed less.
The downside of a famous Gandhi quote “Be the change you want to see in the world” is that it can put a lot of pressure on you. I don’t doubt that Gandhi was right about this but I observed a curious thing: taking this quote to heart can lead you to freeze.
Positive thinking is both good and bad for you. One reason why lots of people are skeptical when it comes to positive psychology or using strengths is that they think it’s all about the slogan “Think Positive”. Well it’s not.
If you like to read you must have encountered this idea, that the Inuit have between 13-27 different ways of talking about snow. Some say it’s an urban myth while others claim it’s true. At university our lecturer once challenged us to write down all the different ways once could talk about rain. read more …