The words “strengths-based” have long been used in social services and education. But how do we learn to identify our personal strengths and the strengths of our students? How can learning what’s right with us promote wellbeing? The field of Positive Psychology has engaged in decades of work classifying and creating assessments to identify 24 individual strengths deemed valuable to many cultures throughout history.
The VIA Institute on Character is dedicated to promoting education and awareness of Character Strengths. Its Via Character Strengths Survey is available at no cost and identifies each person’s unique profile of individual character strengths from the 24 Character Strengths. These Character Strengths impact the way we think, feel, and behave. Most of us find it fun to learn more about ourselves, and the VIA Survey is a great first step towards finding your top strengths and learning how to use them for your benefit. When strengths are known and used, people experience greater satisfaction at work, increased productivity and more positive emotions. Think about how helpful this could be in the classroom if teachers and students knew their strengths and could use this to their advantage! Sharing with a student that their top strength of Fairness would be a great fit for the restorative justice team at school or choosing a student with a signature strength of Perseverance to lead a tough problem-solving challenge in science class could build their confidence
We capitalize on our top character strengths here at Proof Positive too. Our top strengths are even listed on our company bios. Katie is our most Creative team member, and if we need to develop multiple ideas, she is our first go-to. Jason has Perspective as a top strength; he helps us to see a problematic situation from multiple perspectives and guides our team through problem-solving when we need to make a tough decision. Avery’s detailed eye is invaluable in developing our Skill of the Month resources because one of her signature strengths is Appreciation of Beauty and Excellence. Using our strengths helps us be more effective in our work, and Katie, Jason and Avery can all personally attest from experience that it has improved their job satisfaction.
Visit our Character Strengths Skill page to learn more about Character Strengths, to take the VIA survey and learn how to use your top strengths.