Who Am I

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I like doing this. Blogging is a nice distraction and just a way for me to get some thoughts out there. But there are days when nothing comes. We are starting to open back up and I did plant some more flowers this weekend. It is hard to believe that May is more than half over and next week is Memorial Day – the unofficial start of summer. What kind of a summer will it be? One of masks and social distancing?

I guess I’m just getting tired of the whole COVID thing. I just wonder if 100 years ago people experienced the same kind of fatigue as that pandemic went on and on.

Anyway, I thought it might be fun to share a little more about the person behind the curtain. One thing about some of us introverts – give us some kind of personality related test and we are all over it. Something about wanting to understand what makes us tick I guess.

I had actually done this survey years ago but it came up again in a friends Facebook post and I had nothing better to do so I figured, why not. It is the VIA character strength survey and it is free to do. Free is good. They’ll sell you a more detailed report if you want it but you can stick with the free stuff.

Like all such surveys, I have my quibbles with some of the questions. Some of them are in the form “my friends would describe me as …” Well that’s kind of tricky to answer because how can you be really sure what your friends would say about you? Leaving that aside, you end up with an ordered list of 24 strengths. The ones at the top are the ones you use most.

Here’s my top five:

  1. Humor – defined by VIA as “liking to laugh and tease; bringing smiles to other people; seeing the light side; making (not necessarily telling) jokes.” Yeah, I’d say that’s pretty accurate. When I’m at my best, I do try to get people to see the light side of the situation. The problem for me is that there are times I can get overwhelmed by negative things and the humor kind of goes away.

2. Creativity – defined as “thinking of novel and productive ways to conceptualize and do things; includes artistic achievement but is not limited to it.” This is a theme that comes up from time to time as I do these things and it took me a bit to accept it. I guess I tended to think of creative types as the out there artists and inventors which wasn’t me. But the more I’ve learned about how my mind works and how I do tend to make a lot of connections that others don’t, it has started to sink in that this is a strength of mine.

3. Perspective – in this case defined as “being able to provide wise counsel to others; having ways of looking at the world that make sense to oneself/others.” Another one that where my first thought is “really???”. It goes with the territory of never thinking of myself as the type who should be giving counsel. Then I have to look at the evidence and the number of people who seem to turn to me for advice. I guess there are those who just like talking things over with me. The Work Daughter is a clear example of this. So, yes, this one resonates.

4. Appreciation of Beauty & Excellence – which is defined as “Noticing and appreciating beauty, excellence, and/or skilled performance in various domains of life, from nature to are to mathematics to science to everyday experience.” I’m the type of person who can see the beauty in almost any part of nature so, yep, this one is spot on. Also my reactions to seeing pro shows at dance events. Can certainly appreciate those skilled performances.

5. Fairness – defined as “Treating all people the same according to notions of fairness and justice; not letting feelings bias decisions about others; giving everyone a fair chance.” Well, I can be as judgy as the next person but mostly that is people I haven’t met. I do make fun of the Lance Armstrong wannabes who zoom by on their bikes while I’m walking the dog. But I’ve met those who do bike and I don’t hold it against them. At the end of the day, I am usually able to see things from the other person’s perspective so maybe that is fairness. I’d say it fits pretty well.

So that’s a little trip around my character strengths. Not sure why I felt like sharing but there you go.

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