Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Speaking of Psychology...

...I recently have been reading about something called "Positive Psychology." While psychology has traditionally focused on mental illness, pathology --basically negative feelings and emotions-- positive psychology focuses on what makes people thrive and what constitutes happiness for a given individual. The idea is to identify and build upon your strengths instead of focusing on the negative or one's weaknesses.

There is a free on-line strengths inventory that you can take at ViaSurvey.org. It was a pretty long questionaire, but it pegged me pretty well!

I've listed my "top five" strengths below. Are these signature strengths for people from a Laestadian background? Or of ex-Laestadians? My suspicion is that different people have different strengths and that people from a Laestadian background will vary every bit as much as the general population. On the other hand, when I saw that my Number One strength was caution and discretion I couldn't help but wonder if this is something that got pressed upon me at an early age precisely because of my Laestadian upbringing.

I invite you to take the survey and post your "top five" strengths here, as well as discuss all aspects of psychology and Laestadianism. At the very least, we might get to know each other a little better!

My "top five" strengths:

1) Caution, prudence, and discretion
You are a careful person, and your choices are consistently prudent ones. You do not say or do things that you might later regret.

2) Fairness, equity, and justice
Treating all people fairly is one of your abiding principles. You do not let your personal feelings bias your decisions about other people. You give everyone a chance.

3) Industry, diligence, and perseverance
You work hard to finish what you start. No matter the project, you "get it out the door" in timely fashion. You do not get distracted when you work, and you take satisfaction in completing tasks.

4) Curiosity and interest in the world
You are curious about everything. You are always asking questions, and you find all subjects and topics fascinating. You like exploration and discovery.

5) Love of learning
You love learning new things, whether in a class or on your own. You have always loved school, reading, and museums-anywhere and everywhere there is an opportunity to learn.



-ttg

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Welcome, Amelia

Please join me in welcoming my new friend Amelia as a guest contributor! I promised her she need only talk when she feels like it, and I do hope she feels like it soon. Meanwhile, enjoy this photo of Bonobo chimps at play . . .

Sunday, August 05, 2007

Slow-Rising Blog


Hello friends. My apologies for the confusion over the shutdown. I had some difficulty managing my different blog and email accounts, and then vacation got in the way, and then, well, maybe a little inertia. Okay, a lot of inertia. Why? I dunno. I guess I'm bored silly by Laestadianism and religion as topics. I find myself increasingly distressed and distracted by world events, and eager to align my daily life -- my tiny sphere of influence -- with my values.

I'm not sure where this blog fits in.

But since "community-building" is one of my core values / hobby horses / compensating behaviors (pick one), I'll keep blathering away.

What's new with you? I just finished reading "A Thousand Splendid Suns" by Khaled Hosseini, and highly recommend it. What a vivid depiction of life behind the veil. You will find it difficult to think in stereotypes about Afghanistan and Muslims after reading this.

In the past few months, I joined a group of neighbors in bringing a farmers market to our hood. It has been incredibly rewarding. Not just for the glorious variety of fruits and veggies, but the event itself. In Bill McKibbon's "Deep Economy," he cites a study showing that there are 10 times the number of conversations at farmers markets versus grocery stores. Indeed, ours is a royal jabberfest, with the cental aisle so clogged with conversations at times that snits have snitted (can you DO something about those people who just STAND there and TALK while I'm trying to buy my PARSNIPS and get OUT?! Erm, no, We. Encourage. That kind of thing.)

At last week's market, I ran into an old friend, someone who danced at our wedding and lives just blocks away, but somehow, I'm ashamed to say, fell off the face of the earth when our kids were born (hers are older). She has aged so much in 10 years that I barely recognized her! No doubt she was thinking the same thing about me.

As they say, time flies like an arrow; fruit flies like a banana.

So what's up with you?