Play to Your Strengths

Do you ever think about your character? You know – those innate traits, characteristics and features that form your individual nature. I sometimes think of character as the person you are when no one is looking. Just to be clear, I do not mean this in a moralistic sense, although I do believe morality can play a role in character, but that’s a different post.

On Sunday I was reading The Happiness Advantage: The Seven Principles of Positive Psychology That Fuel Success and Performance at Work (affiliate link) by Shawn Achor.  In the book he suggests taking a test that will help determine your character strengths. You too can take the test at http://www.viame.org. This site explains that “Your character strengths are already within you, but isolating and identifying those strengths can be complicated, confusing and incredibly time-consuming. The test is designed to help you easily discover the strengths you already have and gain deeper insight into what makes you who you are.”

The test gives 24 characters strengths and arranges each highest to lowest for you. My top five came back like this:

Okay, so this is a fun little exercise and maybe, just maybe you learned something about yourself or at the very least confirmed information you already knew.

But why am I sharing this today?

Well, here’s the exciting part! A group of volunteers (577 of them) were asked to pick one of their top five character strengths and use it in a new way every day for a week. At the end of the week this group was happier and less depressed than the control groups! You’re starting to get it aren’t you?

But HERE’s the REALLY exciting part!

The benefits lasted for a full six months after the experiment.

I encourage you to take the test, and find a way to play to your strengths. You’ll be happier!

I’d love to hear your top strengths and how you plan to put them in action. Just leave me a comment 🙂

About Gayle

Gayle is a Social Media Enthusiast and Consultant with Biz Buzz Social Media Marketing; co-owner of Glynne's Soaps; a dalmatian rescuer; genealogist and member of the Daughters of the Revolution (DAR) and of the United Daughters of the Confederacy (UDC); a Cubs Fanatic; hopeful bagpiper; purveyor of positive; and a curious seeker of life.
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One Response to Play to Your Strengths

  1. Jenn says:

    My top strengths were Humor, Teamwork, Gratitude, Kindness and Forgiveness. This week I’m going to emphasize the trait of Gratitude by consciously making an effort to list the things I am thankful for every day.

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