|When You Look In the Mirror -- Who Do You See?|
I highly recommend people have an opportunity to take a personality styles test. In our previous blog post on “Personality Styles – Which one are you?” we included links for a number of the most common. There are a variety of tests and most are based on a person selecting words or phrases that best describe themselves. For class I developed a simple word test to help establish a basis for a particular personality (see sample below). A great task is for someone to write down 10 or more words that perfectly describe themselves (in their own opinion). For balance, they should include some negative words. This list becomes a personal example of what a person thinks about themselves. Most people can create a selection of 30 to 40 words they can work with. Once the word list is created, a person should develop a group of sentences using the words to describe how they live them out each day. I call it an I AM List. This list process helps a person see what they think about themselves. People begin to realize more of the positives about themselves (personal self-talk, not what someone else tells them). It allows a person to stop, and think about what they can give themselves credit for it. This is individual person focused, not world focused. Defining oneself with positive words begins a process of developing them into positive traits that the individual will be seen as possessing in the world. The simple action of defining positive words helps to create feelings of worth and value. When a person has positive feelings of worth and value, it leads toward acts of demonstration (actions). There is a natural desire to do more of the good stuff and cut back on the negative.
This exercise does take time and thought but the return is a strong foundation. Once a person develops this skill they will not be as susceptible to what other people think. It’s unrealistic to expect to please everyone. You will not be everyone’s friend, but you can be your own best friend.
The sample worksheets below can be accessed an downloaded by going to the Google.com/docs link:
|I AM Worksheet Page 1|
|I AM Worksheet Page 2|
After finishing with the I AM List Worksheet, I like using some Dear Abby articles to allow students to practice understanding how Self-image words can lead to feelings and actions. Dear Abby has a large selection of items that can be useful. One of my favorite letters is about how “a daughter acts like a winner, but feels like a loser”. This article can be found at the following link: http://www.appeal-democrat.com/living/dear-abby-daughter-acts-like-winner-feels-like-loser/article_5ebcc798-8970-11e3-9d7d-001a4bcf6878.html
This letter personifies the importance of an I AM List. We all have those moments which prompt negative self-talk, and we begin to believe the words we think and speak about ourselves. This is the moment when you need to remind yourself of that long list of words you chose to define yourself when you were not in the midst of an emotional weakness. Those self-chosen words become descriptive sentences of your habits and actions, thus they become the representation of the character people witness on a daily basis (but you may get a whole different view). That list is a present reminder that you are a work in progress, aware of the negative and the positive and motivated to improvement both.