Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Build From Our Strengths

We can focus on the problems in our lives and try to force ourselves to deal with them or we can focus on our strengths and go from there.

What’s the difference? Well, if we begin with the problems, we’re putting all our energy into the problems and may feel as if we’re butting our heads against the wall and getting no where—especially if our problems involve other people we have no control over.

On the other hand, if we focus on our strengths and creating a sense of faith in ourselves, then we begin to see possibilities to make our lives better. We can put our energy into changing what we can change and making a small space of happiness around ourselves. This in turn builds our resilience and courage and we can take small steps to do things that might scare us a little and discover we have the ability to do them in spite of our fears. That expands our circle of comfort and happiness and ability to do even more good things and find even more reasons to feel good about ourselves.

Mind you, we need to guard that space around ourselves! No one must be allowed to try to take it away from us. No one must be allowed to undercut our faith in who we are. That may mean keeping to ourselves what we’re learning. That may mean taking the time to remind ourselves of all the reasons we do have to believe in who we are and what we can do—so that we don’t depend on the feedback of others to believe it.

We can, from that small space and those tiny steps begin to change the entire world in which we live so that more and more of the people around us begin to see what we can do and support us in creating the life we want to have. We may find new opportunities opening up before us. We may discover more and more things that make us smile and laugh.

If we begin by focusing on our strengths and the reasons we have to be proud of ourselves then we are far more likely to find ourselves tackling the challenges in our lives and coming up with solutions that work. The bonus is that it feels good and we will be much happier and likely think of things we otherwise never would.

It’s all about how we look at ourselves and the world and what we choose to focus on. We don’t have to go by the old rules or anyone else’s ideas of who we are or what we should do with our lives.

Our optimal strategy is NOT trying to please people who think we’re unsatisfactory to begin with but rather to find people who value what we most value about ourselves and situations where we shine because we’re doing what we love.

We each deserve to be with people who think we’re wonderful just as we are. We each deserve to be surrounded by people who respect us and want to know what we have to say. We each deserve to love ourselves.

This week think about your strengths. Make a list—even if you only keep it in your head—of all the reasons to believe in yourself. Make another list of things that make you happy, that make you smile—and do several every single day! Picture giving yourself the love and support that maybe you never had before. And watch what a difference it makes in your life.

Sending blessings and safe and gentle (((((((hugs)))))),
April_optimist

4 comments:

keepers said...

we will vouch for everything you said, and the why is because it is what worked for us, so we agree wholeheartedly!!

peace and blessings

keepers

jumpinginpuddles said...

we are starting to now work on working togetehr as a system instead of seperately this blog is about how that process goes many thanks once again.

keepers said...

Hi April

Is everything ok? You seldom go this long without writing a post so we just wanted to check. if we can do anything to help please contact us

peace and blessings

keepers

April_optimist said...

Keepers and Jumping in Puddles, Glad the words resonate with you.

Keepers, Didn't mean to worry anyone. Combination of being under the weather physically at the same time that I had a whole bunch of commitments this week that had to get done. I hope to post in a day or two. Just still...tired...and not quite fully over whatever the heck this is that I have...