THE MORE I OWN MY CHARACTER STRENGTHS,
the more resilient I can be in life
PREVIOUS: What is C., Part 2
NOTE: The focus of these posts are the healthy, positive, useful character traits. Naturally we all exhibit the negative version of them as well (some listed in future post), but as we heal from our damage we can express the very best of ourselves, especially our more outstanding traits.
IMP: No one has all of these positive qualities in the same proportions or intensity. Our goal is to identify in ourselves as many as we can, appreciate them, hone them – as well as accept & strengthen those we are weak in.
✶ DO NOT let Self-Hate be your guide in listing your innate ASSETS!
CHARACTER IS :
Many studies, including those from Positive Psychology, have defined & classified Character, naming it as the key to understanding what makes up a psychologically good life.
1. For RESILIENCE
Michael Baizerman, Professor of Youth Studies at the U of MINN, writes that Personal Strengths or competencies are associated with healthy development & life success. He calls it “phenomenological resilience,” which can be observed & measured.
• From a recent Post on Control (Types of Self-Control, #3): “Ego resiliency” – the flexible & appropriate expression of self-control in the face of uncertainty, change & environmental demands. Without it people tend to become over- or under-controlled.” Baizerman says the following qualities do not cause resilience, but rather allow it to flourish:
• Autonomy : Adaptive Distancing, Humor, Initiative, Internal Locus of Control, Mastery, Mindfulness, Positive Identity, Resistance, Self-Awareness, Self-Efficacy
• Problem Solving : Critical Thinking, Flexibility, Insight, Planning, Resourcefulness
• Sense of Purpose : Achievement Motivation, Creativity, Educational Aspirations, Faith, Goal Direction, Hope, Imagination, Optimism, Special Interest, Spirituality Sense of Meaning
• Social Competence : Altruism, Caring, Communication, Compassion, Empathy, Forgiveness, Responsiveness
2. As PREDICTORS : This list is used by KIPP NYC, a non-profit network of free, public charter schools preparing students for success in college & life. They’re mainly focused on 7 highly predictive CS, based on Dr. Seligman’s work:
• Curiosity : Students are eager to explore new things. Ask & answer questions to deepen understanding. Actively listen to others
• Grit : Finish whatever they begin. Try very hard even after experiencing failure. Work independently with focus
• Gratitude : Recognize and shows appreciation for others AND for their opportunities
• Optimism: Get over frustrations & setbacks quickly. Believe that effort will improve their future
• Self-Control – School work : Students come to class prepared. Pay attention and resists distractions. Remember and follow directions. Get to work right away, rather than procrastinating
• Self-control – Interpersonal : Remain calm even when criticized or otherwise provoked. Allow others to speak without interruption. Are polite to adults and peers. Keep temper in check
• Social Intelligence : Able to find solutions during conflicts with others. Demonstrate respect for feelings of others. Know when and how to include others
• Zest : Actively participates. Shows enthusiasm. Invigorates others
3. At WORK : Another grouping us with the DISC Assessment System
D = Dominant personality, also known as the type “A”. Outgoing with a strong desire to get things done! Need constant stimulation & activity, becoming easily bored. Natural strengths:
Ds are: • able to juggle priorities • born leaders • high achievers
• clear communicators • don’t accept rejection • great multi-taskers • self-motivated • get more accomplished than any other type
I = Inspiring personality, also outgoing
like the D, but more interested in fun!
Is are: • creative thinkers • energetic • extroverted • imaginative • optimistic • great at persuading & motivating others • people oriented • relationship builders
S = Sweet personality, which says it all. These people love to help others and even though they are more reserved than the first two types, they still like to build relationships just like the “I” personalities. Ss are: • caring • great finishers • quality producers • peace-makers • sentimental • relationship builders • team builders • mediators
C = Cautious personality, always thinking. They’re reserved, task oriented & perfectionists. They may not talk much, but when they do it’s important
Cs are: • cost-conscious • deep thinkers • great researchers • planners • quality-driven • resourceful • systematic • task-oriented
NEXT: Dimension of C, Part