Accessing Our Inner Resources
In the book, Authentic Happiness Martin Seligman emphasizes the importance of using our individual personal strengths in our daily lives, including in our work, hobbies, with family, and in personal relationships. Identifying what our strengths are, and how we can best utilize our unique qualities in our daily lives is of utmost value. When we are involved in activities in which we are using our particular strengths, we are more able to cope with the ups and downs we all face.
Allow yourself to contemplate your own individual strengths. Focus on each strength, (for example, determination, humor, intelligence, or the ability to work hard) and how it has helped you throughout your life. Many years ago, I saw Steve Gilligan demonstrate a hypnotic protocol about focusing on the resources within ourselves and it has always stayed with me. When we focus on a resource within ourselves in trance, in one minute of clock time we are able to have images, thoughts, feelings, and memories about each resource and how it has helped us throughout our lives. This process reinforces our identification with our strengths and contributes to our ability to cope and to achieve mastery.
A tendency can be for us to focus on our deficiencies or the ways in which we feel we would like to improve. However, grounding ourselves in our strengths helps us mobilize our energy in order to be proactive in the world, enhances our self-esteem and provides us with resiliency.