How to Handle Change Like a Pro
“By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail” -Benjamin Franklin
The month of August always feels very transitional. With summer winding down, school days beginning again, and the 4th quarter of the year on the horizon, the anticipation of impending changes can be difficult for some people. However, stepping into unknown adventures doesn’t need to be daunting. Here is one of the best research-based activities that you can do (or help others do) to ease the aches and pains of change.
When was the last time you took stock of the “equipment” you have at your disposal to handle new experiences? Resource priming is a systematic way that you can prepare for an upcoming challenge that activates your strengths and increases the likelihood that you will be successful.
This can be done as a personal exercise or with others (e.g. child preparing for a new school year, client navigating a transition, friend going through a life change). Here’s how it works:
Think of an upcoming stressor that you will need to attend to or handle directly. Next, review your VIA Me and VIA Pro Reports (sign in to your account here to get your reports), paying particularly close attention to the character strengths at the top of your profile. Explore how these strengths have served you in past stressful situations and helped you transition through other life changes. Now, draw connections between your character strengths and the future stressful situation, hypothesizing ways those strengths can contribute to successful outcomes.
Research shows that this type of exercise promotes strengths activation, reinforces positive expectations for change and can also buffer stress responses. It will help create a more positive self-awareness and give you confidence in your abilities to handle challenges, using qualities that come naturally to you and have aided you in past experiences.
This activity is just one of over 70 step-by-step strengths-based activities found in Dr. Ryan Niemiec’s new book, Character Strengths Interventions. This book is positive psychology’s first field guide; a goldmine in science-based applications. According to Dr. Martin E.P. Seligman it is the “GO-TO book for building character”. Learn more and order a copy here.
Interested in more strategies to help with Navigating Transitions? Register for our on-demand course now!
Start the New School Year with Strengths
The VIA Youth Survey is a free, scientifically-validated tool that provides a rank order listing of the child's strengths. Teachers can now learn their student's character strengths quickly and easily with VIA Teacher Sites. You can create a unique link to the VIA Youth Survey and your student's Character Strength Profiles will be added to your account. Sign in here and click the drop down arrow on your My Account page to create your Teacher Account.
Dr. Ryan Niemiec's new book, Character Strengths Interventions, is the epitome of positive psychology: it takes the “backbone” of positive psychology– character strengths – and builds a substantive bridge between the science and practice. Working with client’s (and our own) character strengths boosts well-being, fosters resilience, improves relationships, and creates strong, supportive cultures in our practices, classrooms, and organizations. No matter what kind of practitioner you are, this one-of-a-kind field-guide is a goldmine in science-based applications. You’ll be able to immediately bring the science of well-being into action! Get your copy here.
Help Others Discover Their Strengths
Download this image to use on your website or blog. Link it to the VIA Registration Page or your unique VIA Professional Site for an easy way to discover your client's strengths.