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.