Authentic Happiness

Yes, I am a PBS junkie. There, I’ve admitted it. The last three evenings this week I have chosen to watch PBS instead of any other programming. Usually I’m addicted to Rick Steves and hopefully one day I’ll be able to take some of his tours but last night I watched a program called This Emotional Life. This particular episode, about rethinking happiness, was the final part of the series so I missed the first two. From the website … “A look at happiness, what it is and how to attain it, featuring the stories of people facing major events in their lives, including a cancer diagnosis and the death of a child. Also: why people often are wrong about will bring them happiness.”

Part of the program talked about a new breakthrough in Psychology and research conducted by Dr. Seligman called Positive Psychology and one of the things that was mentioned was this VIA Character Strengths test. Registration is free through the website and there are plenty of additional tests to take but this one in particular caught my eye. I really think y’all should take this test especially … I mean, you know how I am about self-help stuff and self-discovery so you know I couldn’t resist!

My results are posted below. Of course they don’t surprise me at all but it’s still good to be reinforced so that you know what you are doing … no matter how much stress … is right in line with your strengths. It definitely helps me to remember that my job is important and that I’m good at it and that I’m making a difference in the world one student at a time.

My top strength is leadership. Definitely. I’m always selected to be the leader and I excel in the role. I’m firm and fair but compassionate and fun-loving. Second, of course, is a love of learning. It figures that I work at a University, eh? You know, I absolutely love learning new things. I have so many books, when I watch television shows or when someone is talking to me about something I find interesting I immediately go to the internet if I can and look up more about the subject. Like I did last night. I really thought the program was interesting and saw the survey and wanted to learn more. The citizenship, teamwork, and loyalty is something that you would get by talking with my family, friends, and co-workers. I tend to self-sacrifice and unfortunately to the extend that I wear myself out with obligations and undue pressure. It’s important for me to be a part of a team, I love working with others, and I’m very loyal, sometimes to a fault. My family and I share this great ethic and I’m very proud that we are such hard workers.

I won’t go into any more detail but will let you look for yourself. Please, feel free to comment … and, of course, don’t forget to take the survey yourself and let me know your results. I’d love to learn more about you!

Your Top Strength
You excel at the tasks of leadership: encouraging a group to get things done and preserving harmony within the group by making everyone feel included. You do a good job organizing activities and seeing that they happen.
Your Second Strength
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 there is an opportunity to learn.
Your Third Strength
Citizenship, teamwork, and loyalty
You excel as a member of a group. You are a loyal and dedicated teammate, you always do your share, and you work hard for the success of your group.
Your Fourth Strength
Kindness and generosity
You are kind and generous to others, and you are never too busy to do a favor. You enjoy doing good deeds for others, even if you do not know them well.
Your Fifth Strength
Perspective (wisdom)
Although you may not think of yourself as wise, your friends hold this view of you. 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.

8 thoughts on “Authentic Happiness

  1. I just took the test and below are my results.I know one thing, after working as a Supervisor in the past (leader of a group), I don’t really enjoy that role. I don’t like when people are unhappy with me and the choices I made as a group. I have always been more content on working as an individual… so it’s no surprise that Leadership isn’t a selection for me. Enjoy my results! 🙂

    Your Top Strength
    Appreciation of beauty and 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.

    Your Second Strength
    Modesty and humility
    You do not seek the spotlight, preferring to let your accomplishments speak for themselves. You do not regard yourself as special, and others recognize and value your modesty.

    Your Third Strength
    You are aware of the good things that happen to you, and you never take them for granted. Your friends and family members know that you are a grateful person because you always take the time to express your thanks.

    Your Fourth Strength
    Capacity to love and be loved
    You value close relations with others, in particular those in which sharing and caring are reciprocated. The people to
    whom you feel most close are the same people who feel most close to you.

    Your Fifth Strength
    Caution, prudence, and discretion
    You are a careful person, and your choices are consistently prudent ones. You do not say or do things that you might later regret.

  2. I did the equivalent of a senior thesis for my psychology of medicine class about positive psychology and dr. seligman. he and his team do some great research. you should read his books. i love his approach: choosing to be happy.

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