I did the VIA Character Strengths survey today. This is something developed by Martin Seligman (and collaborators) to help identify areas of strength (to build on) and areas of weakness (to build up). It's free to go through, though it takes rather longer than you'd like (probably a full 15 minutes) and you have to supply some basic personal demographics for their database. I didn't pay for the analysis at the end, just got my rankings for the 24 different areas.
I could tell while doing the quiz that my last-place ranking was going to be Appreciation of beauty and
excellence. I'm chewing on why that was so. I certainly value beauty and excellence, but I'm not a rah-rah gusher/enthusiast: I learned how to nod in understated Scandinavian fashion from my dad. I daresay I could voice more appreciation than I do.
My second-lowest area was Zest, enthusiasm, and
energy. I'm guessing this is because at the moment basic survival seems like a very noble goal. I personally think that getting out of bed each morning and making coffee without forgetting to put in water is legitimate reason to rate highly in the energy category. Maybe it's that I'm not very zesty. Go ahead and tell me -- I can take it!
My top three areas were:
1. Honesty, authenticity, and
2. Forgiveness and mercy
3. Judgment, critical
thinking, and open-mindedness
I thought that sounded about right, though there were other items I wouldn't have been surprised to see nudge these out. If you take the survey, let me know what ranked where!