Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Finding My Strength

Today I met a good friend for coffee, and amidst our talk about Christmas and kids and teacherly things, she told me something that really made me think.
She said she's been reading this book by Marcus Buckingham about finding your strengths. According to the book, so many of us focus on our weaknesses and try to work on them instead of focusing on our strengths and building them. Seems silly, right? But how many times have I looked in the mirror and seen the new red spot that will probably erupt into a pimple instead of my cute round cheeks? When I look at my hair, why do I see the gray hairs instead of the blondish--okay, mostly brown hairs? When I listen to myself sing, why do I focus on the missed notes intead of all the good ones?
And I know I do this when I grade students' papers: I write maybe one sentence or even just half a sentence about what the student did well on his or her paper, and then I spend the next four sentences dissecting his or her mistakes. Why do we do this?
My friend said the book claims that if we dwell on our strengths and praise ourselves for what we do well--and if we try to do MORE of those things we're good at, we'll be well--physically, mentally, spiritually, emotionally.
So what are you good at? What am I good at? How can we improve ourselves by focusing on our strenghts. Good thoughts for New Year's Eve-Eve.


ccpl said...

You might be interested in the "Amherst Method" of Writers Workshop ~ Consider googling. It is a technique that focuses on strengths. Great stuff here in your blog, Kir! Thanks ;)

ccpl said...

here's the link: http://www.amherstwriters.com/AWA.html