The miracle is not to fly in the air, or to walk on the water, but to walk on the earth.

~Chinese Proverb~

Attention remedy for fear: Feed your strengths, starve your weaknesses

August 18, 2012

Sometimes we become so aware of our weaknesses that we lose sight of our strengths. If it is true that we energize whatever we focus on, being attentive only to our weaknesses serves to make us weaker.  

Giving our attention is a gift to the receiver. You know this is true when another person listens intently to your words. They have given you something they were free to fix on anything around them, and they chose you. We can also gift ourselves by being attentive to our strengths, despite our pending problems, and weary weaknesses. 

It is amazing how many people have difficulty naming their strengths and there are a few reasons for this. Sometimes our strengths become lost to our perception. Others may see them, but we cannot. People who have over-learned humility may feel embarrassed or selfish recognizing their strengths. 

There are also those who are strength-blind and do not understand what is meant by the concept of personal strengths. Broadly speaking, they are our assets of intellect or giftedness, spiritual perception, physical health, finances (including employment), social and community supports, emotional intelligence, and resilience.  

When faced with a problem, the most helpful thing to do is inventory the inner and outer resources we have to work with, instead of speculating about worst possible outcomes. For many this shift from catastrophic speculation to resourceful thinking requires practice, practice, practice, and possibly the assistance of a strength oriented therapist.

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