There is a considerable body of evidence detailing the benefits of using our strengths. However, research has also revealed the following:
- Only about one-third of people can identify their own strengths (Hill, 2001); and
- Only 17% of people say they use their strengths ‘most of the time’ each day (Buckingham, 2007).
So what does this tell us? It tells us that many of us can’t name our strengths, and when we can we aren’t making good use of them. Interestingly, research has also demonstrated that merely knowing our strengths has benefits, such as happiness and decreased rates of depression (Seligman, Steen, Park & Peterson, 2005).
There is also compelling evidence of even greater benefits when we do use them. Linley, Willars and Biswas-Diener (2010) argue that people who use their strengths:
- Are happier
- Are more confident
- Have higher levels of self-esteem
- Have higher levels of energy and vitality
- Experience less stress
- Are more resilient
- Are more likely to achieve their goals
- Perform better at work
- Are more engaged at work
- Are more effective at developing themselves and growing as individuals.
So what are you waiting for? Why not set aside half an hour today to find out your strengths so you can start making better use of them each and every day. One well-known strengths assessment is the Values in Action (VIA) Survey of Character Strengths, created by Christopher Peterson and Martin Seligman.
The survey measures a person’s twenty-four character strengths. On completion of the survey you will receive a summary report of your 24 character strengths in order from 1 to 24, including your top 5 ‘signature strengths’. To complete the survey click on the following link:
Would you like to know how you could organise a positivity workshop for your workplace? Email us on firstname.lastname@example.org or call to speak to our consultants on 02 9557 1460.
Biswas-Diener, R., Kashdan, T. B. & Minhasa, G. (2011). A dynamic approach to psychological strength development and Intervention. The Journal of Positive Psychology, 6(2), 1-6-118.
Linley, A., Willars, J. & Biswas-Diener, R. (2010). The Strengths Book. Coventry: CAPP Press.