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If someone asked you to list some of your character strengths as a person, would you be able to come up with a few? Any?

This is a question that tends to be difficult to answer for a lot of people. Often it is much easier to identify negative qualities rather than the positive.

This might simply mean that you are a modest person and it is uncomfortable to put a lot of focus on your strengths. Perhaps you feel that it isn’t attractive for a person to boast, and that this comes too close to feeling like you are boasting. And maybe it reveals low self-esteem. No matter what the reason, it can be helpful–and interesting–to explore your own strengths and think about how they may have come about.

This can help build self-esteem, or if nothing else it might help you in your next job interview!

One way to identify and appreciate your own good qualities and character strengths is to take the questionnaire I am about to describe.

It can be found at http://www.authentichappiness.com.

Once you are at the site and you have set up a login for yourself, scroll down until you find “VIA Survey of Character Strengths.” VIA stands for values in action, because our strengths reflect the values that we hold most important. There are 240 questions but don’t let that number worry you, it usually doesn’t take long to complete. When you are done, you will receive a list of 24 character strengths in the order of importance for YOU.

Your results can be used to reflect on what each of the strengths means to you, and how it may have developed and become as important as it is. You may gain insight from the ranking, or even be surprised that a particular one ranks higher than another.

Taking the time to answer those questions and reflect on your strengths can help you know yourself just a little bit better, and perhaps even find ways to utilize those strengths more in your life.