Name Your Strengths – The Self-Worth Challenge

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Welcome back to The Self-Worth Challenge. Each week I am addressing a topic related to self-worth and I include a few questions at the end to help you consider how you value yourself and how to strengthen it further.

Although this will only take you five minutes or so, it will set you up to consider this aspect of your self over the coming week.

If you are new to the challenge you might want to start at the beginning and work your way through the series. The very first post is linked here.

Last week in ‘You are Unique’ we explored how everyone is unique yet we can easily limit ourselves. This week we are moving on to naming our strengths.

The Self-Worth Challenge Questions

So working on the basis that you accept that you are unique and bring something very much your own to the world, now it is time to look at what your strengths actually are.

Many people find it helpful to jot down their ideas so that they can look back on them over the coming weeks.

Most importantly really be aware of your first thoughts after each question. Don’t filter out anything for an answer you find more acceptable. There is no right and wrong or good or bad when exploring your inner world.

So here we are not looking for what you want to be or what you are not, but what you already are.

Write a list of your strengths including at least four of them.

So as an example, for me I would put…

  • Gentle
  • Intelligent
  • Good listener
  • Reflective

Once you have this list there are some points for you to consider.

How easy is it for you to list the things you bring to the world?

If it was difficult or made you uncomfortable then it is worth stopping to explore what is going on.

If we are not used to thinking of ourselves in positive terms this can be really hard to do. It can even feel threatening to suggest that there is good in ourselves. It may feel like we don’t deserve it or we can fear other people disagreeing.

However, everyone has talents and strengths wether we recognise them in ourselves or not. It is just that, if we do allow ourselves to acknowledge our strengths, we can make more use of them.

Everyone has talents and strengths wether we recognise them or not Click To Tweet

If you are stuck, begin to think of other people in your life and what they value in you. Maybe you are a good friend, or someone to laugh with or a good listener. Maybe you are quick witted or can always see the funny side of life.

Once you have your list look at it again and consider these questions…

Which are the hardest characteristics for you to acknowledge in yourself?

These are the strengths we have, but find difficult, because it contradicts some other belief about ourselves. They are the ones that we need to work on incorporating as a part of our self image. I will use myself here to explain.

For me listing ‘Intelligent’ was the least comfortable thing for me to put it in my list. I always believed intelligence was about academic prowess. Those who could recall facts and remember details were the clever people and I can’t do that. Over the years I have learnt about the different types of intelligence and understood that I am actually clever. However, it is still the least comfortable thing for me to say about myself because clearly I have not fully accepted the truth of it. I am excited about the prospect of this changing because I know from long experience that when it does it will open up things as yet unknown in my life.

Were there any strengths you thought of but excluded because it felt too uncomfortable?

These are the strengths we have that really challenge us. So once again, using me as an example, going back 20 years ‘intelligence’ just would not have made my list. I would have thought it but then excluded it. However, during that time, having acknowledged the truth, I have utilised that part of myself much more fully than when I denied it.

Even if you found listing your strengths easy this above question is for you too. Finding it easy signifies that you are comfortable with having strengths. But look a little further and push yourself to think about what could be on your list but you excluded or wouldn’t put there? We often put skills outside and beyond ourselves that we actually possess.

We often put skills outside and beyond ourselves that we actually possess. Click To Tweet

 

The next topic on The Self-Worth Challenge: Talk To Yourself

If you are excited by the prospect of this challenge please tell your friends. It is a great thing to do and be able to share with those who care for us.

I would be love to know any aspect of this that you would like to share with me. I am aware that these journeys are often very personal, so if you would rather not it would still be great to know you are following along.  I will respond to all comments.

So what is next?

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67 thoughts on “Name Your Strengths – The Self-Worth Challenge

  1. I’d say my some of my best attributes are my intelligence, my fighter spirit (I don’t give up easily), I’m a good listener, I’m analytical and logical, I’m introspective (I consider that a strength), I am able to see both sides of an opinion, belief, story. I’d say the last one is the hardest one for me because while it is a strength that I have I also see it as a curse sometimes because people wanting my opinion on something or when I hear someone else’s point of view and it makes more sense to me so then I agree and adapt; this makes me seem and feel a little flaky, like I can’t really make up my own mind. Logically, I know that’s not true yet I still see this in myself at times, especially when it comes to politics or religion.
    Michelle recently posted…The Blogger InterviewMy Profile

    1. Hi Michelle, This is where self value comes in and it is not always easy. The strengths we have may not always feel like strengths. Someone who is quiet will get great benefit from it at times but at others the may wish they were more expressive.

      Your ability to see both sides of an opinion is a very good skill. It creates its own challenges but it is still a strength of yours which you can work with. From my point of view the world really needs people who have an overview and don’t feel it is necessary to remain with one view point. Accepting that in yourself is a great thing. Kirsten

  2. This is my favourite post in this series so far! When I was about to list my own qualities I started thinking of negative qualities, you know the ones people always seem to love asking for at job interviews (at least the ones I’ve been to). That got me thinking of how often I’ve been asked to name my negative qualities but not my positive. It took me a while but I actually enjoyed thinking about my strengths. I might have to start doing that a little more often 🙂 #PicknMix
    Emma’s Mamma recently posted…Paying it forward – The Liebster AwardMy Profile

    1. Fantastic. It is great that you could see how negative qualities came to mind easier than your strengths. It shows how we are taught to focus on what we lack more than what we have which is strange really. If we want to create something then it is no use focussing on what we don’t have but instead we need to work with what we do have and the first step is to identify the raw materials. It would be a good thing to do it more often or even attempt to expand your list. Thanks for sharing. Kirsten

  3. I can’t believe that you would ever doubt your intelligence. Your posts are so full of knowledge and flow so well. My two personality traits that contradict would have to be I believe to be witty but suffer from battles with depression. It’s something I have a tendency to try and hide about myself. Thanks for linking another great post with #momsterslink.
    Trista, Domesticated Momster recently posted…~August Is National Romance Awareness Month~My Profile

    1. We all have contradictions within us Trista and that is okay. You certainly are witty and you have a way of looking at things that is uniquely your own and funny.
      The more you incorporate within yourself the better it is, if that makes sense. Like me not acknowledging intelligence even though it was within me, it can be hard to see some things within ourselves because of our emotional training but it is far better that I do acknowledge it.
      I am just talking from a personal viewpoint but I am feeling from what you have said that there are strengths and abilities within you that you have not even touched on yet. Does that sound possible? Is it scary or exciting?
      There is some great exercises in a week or two that I think will be useful for you. Have a great weekend Trista.

      1. Sometimes my own strengths surprise me. Like my ability to stay calm when there is a serious crisis going on around me. I always thought I would be the one running around like a chicken with my head cut off…but I’m surprisingly calm.
        Trista recently posted…Local Flavors ~ The GriddleMy Profile

        1. Hi Trista. It is wonderful when we surprise ourselves. That is a really important point that I bring up later on about our strengths not being static or even what we think. throughout life we can pull out from within ourselves things that we did not expect to be there. It is a great thing to be calm in a crisis. Have a great week. Kirsten

  4. Excellent post, started me thinking! Can I list soul deep anger and competitiveness as positives? I know they are “negative”, but they have motivated me and taken me far. Why are such things defined as negative? These traits are part of the whole, part of me, should I not embrace them if I am to love myself? Or do I have to pick out only the parts of me that others would approve? Why? Is it because I am a woman and we are supposed to be a certain way? Or because they are not happy feelings? I think we need to look more closely at how we define negative and positive…. hmmm

    1. Hi Kathleen, Listing traits and emotions as positive and negative is not very useful. Like you said there is the being a woman and what is expected from us which can, if we allow, it limit our ability to be ourselves. Likewise feelings that are happy are not the only ones we need.
      All of you is valid and can be used if you embrace them. There are things within us that are markers that we are not being ourselves, a discord within, but this is of use too. For example a quiet person may be naturally that way and comfortable with it. However another person may be quiet because they have been taught to be wary of sharing their views and so this behaviour is limiting them. Although again once this is acknowledged this person can use that life experience as a strength.
      So to you, competitiveness is a great trait as long as it is utilised in a way that works for you. Soul Deep anger is an emotion that I am guessing fuels you and powers you to achieve what you want. Sometimes we utilise emotions that give us something but they may not be in our best interests, like a workaholic who works and works regardless of their own needs. It would be for you to think about wether that works for you as a complete person. I hope that helps. Thanks for commenting. Kirsten

    1. Thanks for letting me know. This is not about singing your own praises but just about acknowledging your strengths so that you can fully utilise them. We are often taught to focus on what we don’t have in life but that limits us. Of course we need to learn and grow but only noticing what is not there is not as helpful as seeing both. For example if we want to create something then it is no use focussing on what we don’t have but instead we need to work with what we do have and the first step is to identify the raw materials then we can actually begin building.
      I am glad you are going to give it a go. Your inner critic will still be there but just put that voice to one side when you hear it and carry on identifying your strengths. Best of Luck. Kirsten

    1. Thanks Emily. You are likely to love the tasks coming up in part 6 then too. Thanks for letting me know. I appreciate it. Kirsten

  5. This is such a brilliant post. Your posts always make me re-evaluate how I think about myself. It shouldn’t be hard writing down your strengths, but I find it really difficult. Always lacking in confidence and very self concious, my self-worth levels are very low. I am going to to the whole summer holiday self worth challenge. I’m off to write my lists of strengths now. x #sundaystars
    Chloe recently posted…#MYSUNDAYPHOTOMy Profile

    1. That is fantastic Chloe. giving yourself the time will reap rewards for you later on. Even when it is tough it is good. When we hit a block, it helps us understand it is there and gradually process it. There are some more great tasks in later weeks that will help. Thanks for sharing. Kirsten

    1. Hi Rebecca, It is good to stop and take some time to consider our strengths. It is so easy to be focused on what we want rather than what we already have but what we have is what is great about us. Thanks for commenting. It is appreciated. Kirsten

  6. After reading this beautifully written post, it stop me thinking what really are my strengths, it’s difficult to be specific. But in general, I’m relatively a good person, it’s quiet a broad description but it mostly covers most of my personality I assumed! #AnythingGoes

    1. I am really glad you know you are a good person but if you can be more specific it is helpful. When we specifically acknowledge our talents it is easier to utilise them and remind ourselves of them when we need it. So here I am meaning any trait of skill you have that helps you in your life. If it is really tough then there is a challenge in a couple of weeks that will help by getting input from others. I hope that helps. Thanks for reading and commenting. Kirsten

  7. I’m loving this series, it’s definitely made me think and analyse myself. I don’t think of myself as someone with particularly low self esteem, yet I found this challenge a bit uncomfortable. When thinking about why, I realised why. It felt like sort of showing off listing what I think I’m good at, and that’s something I need to work on – recognising self worth and being arrogant are two very different things! Thanks for pushing me to see that 🙂
    Thanks for linking up to #AnythingGoes
    Debbie
    http://www.myrandommusings.blogspot.com
    Random Musings recently posted…18 More Things You Didn’t Know About MeMy Profile

    1. This is a great realisation Debbie. It is so worth making the distinction because it impacts our lives too. It is only sensible to acknowledge the tools we have in our tool bag so that we can go out there and use them. I am really glad the series is working for you. Thanks for letting me know your discovery. It is so great to hear. Kirsten

  8. This is great stuff Kirsten, in the last few years the encouragement to focus on my strengths rather than my weaker areas has transformed my life. I personally found the Strengths Finder approach such a helpful way to articulate the key areas that make me tick – and once I’d articulated them it was so much easier to embrace them. Love the idea of the Self Worth Challenge! Keep up the great work!
    Luke

    1. That is great to hear Luke. There is something so powerful about articulating things about ourselves. The process of having to write or verbalise makes it more real and easier to grasp. It is wonderful and exciting to see the changes when we embrace our strengths. In two weeks time I have another challenge that is designed to expand on this and maybe even give you ideas of what talents we may still not be acknowledging in ourselves. Thanks for commenting. Kirsten

  9. This is really interesting!I think I’m warm,open and also a good listener.I always feel a bit awkward when asked about “me” but I think between getting a bit older and starting my blog I have felt a lot more self confidence! #BabyBrainMonday
    Pickinguptoys recently posted…For my NanMy Profile

    1. Warm, open and a good listener are great skills to have. It is worth practising talking about you and thinking in those positive terms. Discovering areas where we can express ourselves (like blogging) is great for building confidence and practicing exercising our own voice. Great to hear about you. Thanks for sharing. Kirsten

  10. I love this post, very thought provoking. It can be hard to acknowledge your own strengths as so many comments have said, but it’s a really important exercise. You can feel good about your strengths without boasting. #BabyBrainMonday
    Becky, Cuddle Fairy recently posted…Cruising with KidsMy Profile

    1. Absolutely. when we have a strength it doesn’t take away from anyone else’s and it is not saying that we are better than anyone else. It is just about acknowledging what is so that we can utilise our talents fully. Thanks so much for commenting.

    1. Hi Mackenzie. It is surprising how hard it can be to do. Just from reading your blog, I could guess at some of your strengths but it is not for me to say rather for you to pull out of yourself and note how comfortable/uncomfortable it is. It is amazing how we can logically know something like ‘I’m intelligent’ but struggle with it because it conflicts with what we believe about ourselves. Keep digging! Week 6 will have another task in it that will help you expand this further. Kirsten

    1. You will certainly have them, in spade fulls but it is about what you can recognise in yourself. Even if it feels a little uncomfortable it can still be a strength of yours, it may be that it is hard to accept. Week 6 will have another task in it that will help you expand this further. Best of Luck. Kirsten

  11. I hate having to think about my strengths but…I think I’m intelligent, compassionate, and have a good sense of humour. I used to think I was patient but since having children I’m not so sure!

    #AnythingGoes

    1. Hi Lady Nym. It is great that you have decided on some strengths even though you hate it. Those are all great skills you mention are fantastic. I think that for many of us actually having kids calls in to question the patience level that we expected to have.

      The fact that you hate thinking about your strengths is going to have an impact on your life in some way. It makes me wonder where you received those messages from and if you really believe it is not good to acknowledge your own talents? It is not that I am being nosey and I don’t need to know your answers to this (unless you want to) but it would be lovely to think that you could become more comfortable with you skills and fully acknowledge them with time. Actually in week 6 we return to the topic again from another angle which will be good. Thanks for sharing and well done.

    1. I am glad it has been a positive experience. It is great to stop and realise our strengths. Thanks for commenting. It is appreciated. Kirsten

    1. Hi Stacey. you are so right. It is easy to focus on what we want to improve in ourselves and we think that those things will make our life better. But when we truly embrace our skills and strengths it really empowers us. I am glad to hear that you like to find the positive in things. thanks for reading. Kirsten

    1. It is strange isn’t it that we often treat others quite differently to how we treat ourselves. Likewise you have a great day too. Thanks for hosting. Kirsten

  12. Another fab post from you in this brilliant series. I’m really rubbish at coming out with my strengths – it’s the kind of question that comes up in an interview and always stumps me! Thanks for sharing this – I’m definitely going to have a think 🙂 Thanks so much for linking up with #TwinklyTuesday
    Lisa (mummascribbles) recently posted…Working Woodland DayMy Profile

    1. It would be great if you could get your own list together Lisa. If not really think about the messages you have learnt in life about naming your strengths because it is usually these that hold us back. Week 6 will have two more useful exercises related to this that might help. Best of luck. It is okay to be good at things. thanks for commenting. Kirsten

  13. Another great post and is something I try and do regularly despite my feelings. Are all these posts series linked, of so could you drop me a tweet with the series link, would loved to back read and go through them all. Thank for linking up with us on the #bigfatlinky hope to see you there this week.

  14. I really love your posts – they always make me consider my spiritual side and I love that. My traits are short tempered, passionate and very caring. Obvious which ones are positive and negative!! Thank you for linking up to #babybrainmonday. Keep up the fab inspiring posts x
    Harps recently posted…UDI Gluten Free Hamper Giveaway!My Profile

    1. Okay so I am glad you have your traits list and I love the passionate and caring parts. But I would love for you to push it a bit further and ask yourself what is the upside of being short tempered or what does it give you? Almost every trait can be seen in a positive or negative light. For example someone who is quiet could see it as a bad thing but it actually allows them to listen and reflect on things that others would n’t stop to do. With being short tempered it might give you something or it might be that there is something behind it that is beneficial. Let me know if you have any questions.

  15. Oh what a great idea and so inspiring to know self worth and appreciate what you can bring to the world. Thank you for linking up to Share With Me #sharewithme

    1. Hi Jenny. Thank you. Self worth is so important. We might want to grow and improve but valuing what we have is essential. Thanks for hosting your sharewithme linky. Kirsten

    1. Hi Zena, Determination is a great one to have. When it is pointed in a direction that is of our choice then it can really take us far. I am really glad you can see your strengths. It is an invaluable exercise to acknowledge what we have within us. Thanks for sharing. Kirsten

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