This exercise is useful in showing people how resourceful they already are. People who suffer from lack of self-esteem tend to focus on their weaknesses or to blame others for their problems. This lack of belief in their abilities makes them less confident which in turn confirms their negative beliefs. Most of their energy is then spent figuring out who did wrong and who is to blame.
This exercise helps to break this cycle by highlighting that everyone has certain resources and strengths that they can tap into. When a person doesn’t see his strengths, he starts to develop a defeatist personality. This exercise helps bring positive strengths and qualities to surface, kick starting a more positive view of life.
Share an experience with others and explore your positive qualities that allowed you to do well in that experience.
What You Need
- An area where people can sit around and all see each other
- Explain that you want the delegates to share their stories with others and get feedback on them.
- Ask for a volunteer to start the exercise.
- Ask this individual to share an experience with others where he achieved something that he felt good about.
- Ask others in the group to provide feedback one by one. Ask them to identify two critical qualities required to achieve what the volunteer reported. Each person should identify new qualities.
- At the end, the volunteer has the option to add more qualities if he can think of more.
- Optionally, you can write these qualities on a flipchart as they are suggested so everyone can see them as the list develops.
- Now, ask the volunteer to select the best three qualities that he thinks were critical in allowing him to succeed. He should then say the following aloud to others and feel proud: “I am X”, “I am Y” and “I am Z”
- Follow this exercise with others until everyone has expressed their best qualities.
- The result is that everyone must feel much more positive and appreciate their current strengths. Sharing their qualities, especially when it is suggested by others can have a profound effect in boosting a person’s confidence.
- Follow with a discussion.
Explaining the Exercise: 2 minutes
Activity: 30 minutes depending on the number of delegates
Group Feedback: 10 minutes
How do you feel now that you know what others think of your capabilities? What do you think of other people’s problems, achievements and approaches? Do you see a similarity with your own? What do you think of positive thinking in contrast with negative thinking? What is the most important lesson you learned from this exercise?