As coaches, we know the importance of identifying the strengths of ourselves and our clients. Today’s enlightening conversation shows us how to look through the lens of character strengths, how to build those strengths, and how to understand them better.

Dr. Ryan Niemiec is one of my favorite past guests from way back in Episode 31. He was here telling us about character strengths and how we can use those in our coaching. Ryan writes books, too! He’s written over 80 scholarly and peer-reviewed articles and 9 books about character strengths, including his most recent, The Power of Character Strengths: Appreciate and Ignite Your Positive Personality, which is our focus today. Ryan is the Education Director of the VIA Institute on Character, which is a global non-profit organization in Cincinnati, Ohio, that leads in the advancement of the science of character strengths. Ryan is passionate about character strengths and how we can help others learn through their strengths and work on flourishing by spotlighting those strengths.

Show Highlights:

  • A look back at Episode 31 with Ryan
  • Ryan’s work and how his new book is different from his previous one, Character Strengths Intervention
  • Why the new book is for the general person who wants to understand character strengths
  • How the new book is user-friendly for the general consumer and covers the what, why, and how of the 24 character strengths
  • Overuse, underuse, and optimal use of the 24 character strengths
  • Character strengths: the part of you that helps you create relationships, be engaged, and find meaning in life
  • Why character strengths are core positive personality qualities that help us think, feel, and behave in certain ways
  • VIA–the Institute, Classification, and Measurement Tool
  • Ways coaches can build their strengths and help clients with character strengths
  • Why we don’t think our character strengths can be changed and developed
  • How we can build up character strengths that we want to improve
  • Our signature strengths: “where the energy flows”
  • The 3 E’s of our signature strengths: effortless, essential, and energizing
  • Benefits of using a character strength differently each day
  • How to increase our ability to see and spotlight our character strengths
  • How coaches can use their own strengths to make themselves better
  • “Resource priming”–how coaches can think about the client’s strengths before they meet with them
  • How coaches can use the resource priming technique
  • Ryan’s new book coming out in June: The Strengths-Based Workbook for Stress Relief
  • How his new book taps into the science of stress with a positive lens


VIA Character   Take the VIA survey and find free resources

The Power of Character Strengths: Appreciate and Ignite Your Positive Personality by Ryan Niemiec

Character Strengths Interventions by Ryan Niemiec

The Strengths-Based Workbook for Stress Relief by Ryan Niemiec

Take a listen to Ryan in Episode 31