Our weaknesses can be our strengths

The other day I was scrolling on the internet, and stumbled across something that put my mindset in a new perspective.  It was a chart listing several mental disorders, and then listing the “strengths” that these disorders bring.
Those with depression tend to score higher on tests, as they have a strong sense of realism.  Those with ADHD can thrive better in disruptive environments.  Those with anxiety have high levels of empathy.

It got me thinking, many view their problems as simply negative, but what if they don’t have to be just that?  What if problems bring their upsides, that one couldn’t have otherwise?
What if the key to dealing with your problems is to use them to your advantage?

This chart doesn’t just have to apply to disorders, but to personalities and characters as well.  I think of it as a scale.  Each personality has its individual strengths and weaknesses, and they balance each other out.  Maybe the reason why so many people have low self esteem is that they focus only on the weaknesses, and don’t pay attention or nurture the strengths.
For example, if you are a person who has a quick temper, and only see yourself as a person who gets angered easily, maybe you aren’t looking at the whole picture.  Underneath this anger may be a strong dislike toward wrongs and injustices, and desiring to change them.  Or maybe you view your quietness as a flaw, but don’t see the considerate, thoughtful nature this can bring.  For myself personally, because of my anxiety, I can be very empathetic and considerate, and easily understand other people’s pain.  So maybe instead of simply viewing your problems as problems, maybe the solution is to view them as something like a secret ally.  This doesn’t mean your struggles will simply be erased.  But looking at your problems through these lens, and nurturing these “upside” traits, can bring you a newfound strength.

positivity: optimist vs. pessimist

One thing I’ve come to realize about myself is that I’m not naturally a positive person.  I’m not the kind of person that walks into a room and brings everyone down with my negativity, or a constant whiner and complainer.  But I’ve always viewed the world in a glass half-empty type of way.  I’m a big realist, and tend to focus on the bad, and often only the bad.
But recently this has shifted.  I’ve come to “learn” positivity.  It’s not something that I naturally turn to, but it’s something I’ve taught myself to do and it’s become more natural over time.  While I may focus on negativity, and be sucked into a downward spiral, I  can now pull myself out of it easier.  I can deal with tough situations with a newfound hope and positivity.  I can find the silver lining.
I’ve also come to realize how much I dislike unnecessary negative people.  I always have, but recently it’s been something I’ve found I especially dislike.  I don’t have time for those who constantly complain and bring others down with their pessimism, especially about trivial things that don’t affect the grand scheme of life.   I’m happy with my progress and where I am now.  Because how I see it is this: you can find a 100 bad things about the world, but you can also fine 100 good.

10 things I learnt from a month long pilgrimage

imageHeeyyya everyone!

So I got back from Europe the 22nd of August.  It was SUCH an amazing experience, and something I know I’ll never forgot.  I’m so blessed to have gone, and seen and done all that I did.
I wanted to share 10 things I learnt from my experience.  (May sound like I put a lot of thought into it, but it reality it was a list I whipped up on my phone during a bus ride.)

 

  1. You can’t control everything, and that’s ok.  Life is not meant to be lived with full preparation, and it’s not meant to be perfect.

2.  You can only achieve greatness in life outside of your comfort zone.

3.  Don’t judge people by their covers.  They can surprise you and be something       completely different than you thought.  Get the chance to actually know them.

4.  Fully trusting in God can be very difficult, but it is something worthwhile that will carry you throughout life.  Learn to do it now.

5.  Don’t be afraid to show your imperfect, quirky side to people.  People gravitate toward genuineness and honesty, and if you show that side of yourself, chances are people will appreciate that more than the constantly put together, perfect person.

6.  Reach out to people.  Just say hi.  You never know what that can lead to.  It doesn’t necessarily have to lead to something big, but sometimes it can lead to lifelong friendships.

7.  Live in the moment.  Don’t be afraid to understand every detail of a building, or to take the perfect pictures.  Just soak in the moment as it is.

8.  Knowledge is power.  Learn as much as you can about the sites you’re visiting, and pay attention to the small details no one else does.  Really listen to the tour guide.  Take your time.

9.  Don’t be disappointed; everything happens for a reason.  Not getting into a museum or rooming with your friends is sometimes the very thing that’s supposed to happen.  Trust in God’s plan.

10.  Don’t be worried about remembering every detail of the trip, or documenting every single thing down.  Years from now, looking back on your experience, the little details won’t matter, the memories will.

 

~B