You stare intently at your chapter officer application, wondering how to answer the questions that are all about you. ‘’What are your biggest strengths and weaknesses? What can you give to the officer team that no one else can?…” Questions like these may seem mediocre to answer but they are very important in the process of knowing who you are. In this blog, I am going give insight on how to discover traits about yourself that we don’t realize.
The Benefits of Self-Knowledge/Checking Your Vitals
No, I do not mean checking your heart beat. I found this cool article from a Psychology site (link located at the end of the blog) and it talks about the benefits of self-knowledge and the 6 building blocks of Self, or VITALS. The letters stand for: Values; Interests; Temperament; Around-the-Clock; Life Mission and Goals; and Strengths/Skills.
There are many benefits to having self-knowledge. One benefit is happiness. Being yourself and expressing who you are will make you happier. You will also have less inner conflict which means you won’t be as stressed in certain situations because you know you can handle it! This also leads to better decision making, self-control, and resistance to social pressure. This can vary from knowing what you’d like to eat for dinner or even saying “no” when others say “yes.” Then you develop a tolerance and understanding of others. We are aware of what our difficulties are but having self-knowledge allows us to empathize with other people. Lastly, you experience vitality and pleasure. Being authentic to ourselves and our surroundings makes this process called “life” a lot more brighter.
So, what exactly are your VITALS?
”V- Values” are guides to decision-making and motivation for goals. For instance, if you feel obligated to attend church each weekend or if you like staying healthy, those are good values. If you know your values, it can help you contribute to the betterment of yourself and your future.
“I-Interests” include your passions, hobbies, and anything that may steer your attention for a long period of time. To find out what your interests are, ask yourself these self-reflecting questions such as: What do I do when I’m bored? What do I like most about the different places I visit?
“T-Temperament” are your inborn/ social preferences. What this basically means is the comparison of an introvert and extrovert. For example, I have a good friend of mine who is an officer in my chapter but she hates getting in front of people and talking to them. She rather be with a smaller group of people to make her feel more comfortable or just to sit by herself and read. When the time is right, she’ll do what she has to do to get the job done, even if it means she has to talk in front of a large crowd. As you can see, she is an introvert. I’m sure many of you feel this way and that’s okay! Own up to yourself.
“A = Around-the-Clock Activities” refers to when you like to do things. Do you like getting your homework done right after its assigned? Would you rather make lunch at 10 a.m. or 1 p.m.? The list could go on. Life is more enjoyable when you do activities you enjoy doing and it’s even better doing them in sync. It’s a waste of energy being someone you aren’t so do you, booboo!
“L= Life Mission and Meaningful Goals” We all have dreams of accomplishing something. When I was younger, I always wanted to learn karate. I even had a video and punching bag included with it teaching some techniques about karate. Every day, I would tell myself to complete the next session and do the techniques right. Before I knew it, I was doing “pork chops” and “pretzel kicks” in my front yard (atleast that’s what I called them). I know it’s difficult sometimes to set a goal but try starting off small. You can start off with the goal being simple such as, “I’m going to clean my room today.” Or “I will go to bed at 9.”
“S-Strengths” are not only your talents but character traits that we all possess. Each and every one of you are all some type of leader. It just depends on what strengths you have and how you act upon them. For example, I can easily get people’s attention in a large crowd but, when given a task, I need it explained to me twice so I can make sure I know what I’m doing. If you need help knowing your strengths, hang tight for an awesome personality test that will reveal them for you! In conclusion, I thought I would give you all a little bit more help to learn more about yourself. Down below is a link to a personality test that the state and area officers took this year. With this test, you can learn about your own strengths and weaknesses, your role in situations, your way of strategizing, and other people’s personalities.
This is this link to the psychology article where I learned about the Benefits of Self-Knowledge and your VITALS. If you would like to dig deeper on this subject, please visit this website: https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/changepower/201603/know-yourself-6-specific-ways-know-who-you-are
Thank you so much for reading this blog. I hope you all have taken information from this and apply this to your lives. To you reading this, don’t ever be afraid to be yourself and to push through your own limits. My advisor, Ms. Lana Myers, told me one of my most favorite quotes in history at state convention last year: “If you don’t believe in yourself than you have already lost.” May God Bless and Keep You All!
Your Louisiana FFA State Parliamentarian,