31: Character Strength Coaching with Ryan M. Niemiec

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Have you ever felt like you needed a new paradigm for coaching clients? Shifting from coaching from a place of “what’s wrong” to focusing on “what’s strong” can dramatically change the results for you and your clients. Coaching a client from a place of strengths allows them to flourish in a way that is not possible when you only focus on strengthening weak attributes.

Today’s guest is Ryan M. Niemiec, Psy.D., the Education Director of the VIA Institute on Character, a non-profit organization in Cincinnati, Ohio, that is viewed as the global leader in advancing the science and practice of character strengths. Ryan is author of the 2017 book, Character Strengths Interventions: A Field-Guide for Practitioners and several others including: Mindfulness and Character Strengths; Positive Psychology at the Movies; and Movies and Mental Illness. He’s an award-winning psychologist, certified coach, international workshop leader, and adjunct professor at the University of Pennsylvania and Xavier University. As a frequent keynoter and workshop leader, he’s offered several-hundred presentations on positive psychology topics across the globe.

Show Highlights:

  • The Character Strengths are a holistic framework: Wisdom, Humanity, Courage, Transcendence, Community-based and Temperance are the categories of the framework
  • We are all wired to strengths blindness, so as a coach we can spot and reinforce strengths in our clients in a fresh way.
  • Character strengths are part of our core identity, our capacities for how we think, feel and behave.
  • Ryan’s job is to advance the science and practice of these character strengths
  • Learn the origins of Character Strengths and the years of work that preceded it.
  • Identifying Signature Strengths – the highest 5-7 of their strengths are the most energizing, the easiest for them to use
  • Ryan’s rule: for every session he must spot and reinforce one character strength
  • Character strengths can help actualize our other strengths

Resources:

Free online assessment: VIA Character Strength Survey at www.viacharacter.org

Connect with Ryan:

E-mail: ryan@viacharacter.org

TEDx talk

Blog on Psychology Today:  What Matters Most?

LinkedIn: ryanVIA

Twitter: @ryanVIA