More and more we as leaders are being asked to work outside the box and work in a way that generates new thinking, options and approaches.
But where do we start?
Well, it all begins with some thinking and some strength of mind.
Strength of mind refers to the focus of our thinking. If we focus on what goes well, what we do well and what our strengths are, feelings of success and achievement emerge. If we focus on the gaps and the things we can’ do the opposite happens.
So where does this come from?
Originally from the Appreciative Inquiry approach which suggested focusing on what we do well and how we can make more of this. This was closely followed by the Solutions Focus approach which focused on what is already working and how to build on this.
Martin Seligman introduced the ideas of positive psychology where he has developed research and methods that go to test the strength based approaches.
In the past individuals and organisations have focused (that word again) their weaknesses to a disproportionate extent.
I am reminded of the “Undergound” rail announcer who always informs us to “mind the gaps”.
If we use our strengths to mind the gap and see our way clear, then we can start from a position of strength, this in turn will help us to recognize our abilities and use them productively.
Working from strengths changes peoples behaviours, beliefs and views of the world.
What was once thought of as impossible becomes easy!
What was once mundane becomes magnificent!
What was once muddy becomes meaningful!
So bear in mind to mind the gap to use our strengths, to use our own strength of mind!
by Peter Mayes