The school holiday slow down has hit our house, lazy lie-ins (even Mr 5 has embraced the lie-in – parenting win!!!), swims at the beach, books and board games. The slow down provides the perfect opportunity to practice appreciation of beauty and this year I am refocussing this to be an appreciation of my children’s strengths. The slowdown has provided the opportunity to sit back, observe the ins and outs of our family life and spot some strengths.
A few strength spotting tips and tricks I’ve picked up along the way:
Know your strength language
Take the time to take the VIA strengths survey, it takes 10 minutes, is free and has no further obligations or spam attached! Your results will give you an overview of all the strengths anda brief summary of each.
Watch, listen, observe
Take advantage of the holiday slowdown to have unstructured time at home. Let the kids chose their own activities and their own pace. Watching what they are drawn to, the language that they use and the way the interact with others will give you an insight into their strengths. Strength spotters listen and watch. Try not to judge their choices as this will colour your interpretation of their strengths, that gorgeous chatterbox that drives you wild at times may just be using their strength of zest!
Have a co-spotter on board
Having a chat with a co-parent or family member about what you observe can help you clarify the strengths you are spotting. Sometimes a second perspective can uncover a strength that was masked by another more dominate one. Describing a common behaviour or activity that your child selects to another person is a great strength spotting tool.
Name and value the strengths you spot
The final step is to start to name and value the strengths you are seeing in your child.
When they completed the Lego Technic motorbike they received for Christmas comment on the perseverance they showed, using the strengths language will make the spotting easier next time.