Whilst most people are acutely aware of their weaknesses, few can accurately name their strengths but we all have them! The VIA Institute On Character offers a free online survey that will help you discover your greatest strengths to unlock your potential. It will only take about 10 minutes to complete. To date, more than 25 million people worldwide have participated.


What counts as a VIA strength?

The VIA Classification of Character Strengths identifies 24 universal character strengths, organised into six different categories. Each strength is one that is found in all cultures and societies. Everyone has their own unique combination of strengths that make up their character. 


List of VIA strengths

Wisdom and Knowledge Creativity, Curiosity, Open-mindedness, Love of learning, Perspective
Courage Bravery, Perseverance, Honesty, Zest
Humanity Love, Kindness, Social intelligence
Justice Teamwork, Fairness, Leadership
Temperance Forgiveness, Humility, Prudence, Self-regulation
Transcendence Appreciation of beauty and excellence, Gratitude, Hope, Humor,  Spirituality


What are your VIA signature strengths?

Your top five strengths are considered to be your ‘signature’ strengths, those that define who you are and how you show up in the world. Another way of saying it is, your signature strengths describe your authentic, best self.


Why knowing your VIA strengths matters

Realising and utilising one’s character strengths helps one manage challenges better and more easily attain one’s goals. Research shows that people who regularly use their strengths are happier in their work and relationships and enjoy better mental and physical health.


Using VIA strengths to help others

If you are a professional coach, teacher, manager, therapist, consultant, trainer, healthcare worker or anyone who works with people, helping your clients, patients or employees to recognise their strengths will play a crucial role in promoting positive wellbeing


Overcoming the negativity bias

We all have a negative bias, which means we take more notice of the negative than the positive. Consequently, people may tend to focus on what’s at the bottom of their list of 24 strengths than what is in the top 5. Remember, they are all STRENGTHS. The ones at the bottom are lesser strengths, not weaknesses!


VIA Strengths in decision making

Knowing your strengths can help you cope better in situations and make better decisions. Asking yourself the question ‘which of my signature strengths could help me now?’, might lead you to utilise your strength of creativity, social intelligence, perspective etc. and combined with other techniques such as the Disney Creative Planning Strategy could literally make your dreams come true!

Read more about Lesley Lyle and her other articles HERE


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