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The Strengths Perspective

Thursday, February 01, 2018

I train social workers and part of today's module was about strengths- based family assessments. Basically, it's learning to not just focus on the family's challenges but to look for and build on their strengths. So I'm going to evaluate my day yesterday using the "normal" way my brain would consider it and then using the strengths perspective:

NORMAL: Today I totally screwed up. I was really tired from not sleeping well so after work, I decided I was going to skip the gym and go shopping. BIG MISTAKE. By the time I went to dinner, I was really hungry and even more tired. So I convinced myself to go to Chili's for dinner. They have healthier options, but I didn't care. I got the Triple Dipper with chicken wings, fried mac n cheese and southwestern egg rolls. Geez! I also didn't get on Sparkpeople so I messed up my long streak. Total bust.

STRENGTHS PERSPECTIVE: Today was a good day. I was really tired from not sleeping well and also muscle sore from my recent emphasis on strength training. (That is such a great feeling!) I had some money from a recent gig so I decided to do some shopping so I would get more steps in. I already had about 4,000 just from walking around the classroom all day! The town I'm in has a Cato, Lane Bryant and Catherine's store all in the same shopping center. Plus-size heaven! It is so great to try on clothes and actually find that a lot of them are too big, as well as being able to buy clothes because I like them, not just because they fit. I have come a long way! After that, I was hungry. I googled "restaurants near me" and nothing looked interesting (happens when you are on the road all the time). I saw Chili's and immediately thought about the southwestern egg rolls, which I love. They are not the healthiest choice, but I decided to have them since overall I am doing so well and have been in control. I got the Triple Dipper with the egg rolls, boneless buffalo wings, and fried mac n cheese with full intention of eating until I was full. Well, I did it! I didn't like the taste of the mac n cheese (too salty) so I didn't eat it. THAT'S HUGE. In the past, I would have eaten it anyway. Plus I think I didn't enjoy the taste because I am beginning to prefer healthier options. Go me!! I stopped when I was full and even left a wing and an egg roll uneaten. When I got back to the hotel, I was so tired I didn't do my Sparkpoints, but that's ok. I am logged in this morning and Sparking away! I have been packing a healthy lunch and snacks everyday. Today after work I will go right to the gym and then a healthy dinner. It's going to be a great day!

WOW. What a difference! It took me way longer to list the STRENGTHS of the day and I even reframed my challenges. Isn't it amazing what can happen when we retrain our brains to look past our (perceived) faults?

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