As I’ve been plowing through The Happiness Advantage by Shawn Achor (on the high recommendation from my friend Jason Schuller, and yes, it’s now one of my all-time recommendations too), I stumbled on a new personality tool that is really neat called the Character Strengths Profile.
I’m a big advocate of StrengthsFinder (and we use Strengths proflicly in our business), so I was intrigued to know how this one shaped up. And because Achor loads the book with scientifitic studies to back his recommendations, I went for it.
The test is about 120 questions long and takes about 15 minutes. It’s a free profile, although after the test, you’ll be shown paid options first. Just scroll down to the free option and get your character strengths list. (I did purchase the full report.)
According to their site, “Your character strengths are already within you, but isolating and identifying them can be complicated, confusing and incredibly time-consuming. The VIA Me! Character Strengths Profile is designed to help you easily discover the strengths you already have and gain deeper insight into what makes you who you are.”
Achor’s advice is to:
Exercise a signature strength every day to increase your happiness.
My top 5 character strengths are:
- Appreciation of Beauty & Excellence — You notice and appreciate beauty, excellence, and/or skilled performance in all domains of life, from nature to art, to mathematics, to science, to everyday experience.
- Creativity — Your ability to think of new ways to do things is a crucial part of who you are. You are never content with doing something the conventional way if a better way is possible.
- Love of Learning — You love learning new things, whether in a class or on your own. You have always loved school, reading, and museums; anywhere and everywhere you see an opportunity to learn.
- Perspective — Although you may not think of yourself as wise, your friends do. They value your perspective on matters and turn to you for advice. You have a way of looking at the world that makes sense to others and to yourself.
- Honesty — You are an honest person, not only because you speak the truth but also because you live your life in a genuine and authentic way. You are down to earth and unpretentious; you are a “real” person.
I can see how practicing one of these every day will increase my overall happiness. I love sunsets and have thousands of photos of them on my phone … whenever I’m super down, I can see how just getting out and being “mindful” of the beauty around me would move my mood up substantially.
I’m still learning about the character strengths (and how to apply them in my life and next in our business), but would love if you’d share yours in the comments.