List of Strengths (An Update)

In this brief guide, we will discuss the list of strengths which make us unique.

According to positive psychology, there are certain in-built capacities in individuals for particular thoughts, feelings and actions.

It is also theorized that all individuals possess these qualities but they vary in the magnitude of these qualities.

The certain magnitude of these qualities makes them unique individuals that behave in certain ways in specific situations.

Here, we will discuss some strengths that can improve individual life to a great extent.  

Individuals perform better when they play by the strength that comes naturally. They are more effective and energetic in their course of action.

However, when individuals tend to use strength that does not come naturally their productivity reduces to a greater degree.

Individuals using their strength can make big difference with small effort.

Effective comes by using their natural abilities and strength leads them to attain higher aims and goals.

Thus it is important for individuals to recognize their strength. With recognition it is important to deploy strength in an effective way.

As a result of study, those individuals who use their strength after acknowledging them scored significantly higher on happiness than those individuals who only recognize their strength and do nothing constructive about it.

 Martin Seligman gave list of 24 psychological strengths which are as followed:


Individuals who have high curiosity have intrinsic interest in the world around them.

Those individuals are also curious about their inner experiences. Researchers have associated curiosity with problem solving ability and intelligence.

Direct relationship between curiosity and intelligence has yet not been defined but it has been theorized that active brains become intelligent brains.

It also helps individuals maintain positive healthy interpersonal relationships.


Forgiveness is a trait that is associated with pardoning others of their wrongdoings.

It also includes being merciful towards others and letting go of negative things that come in response to someone’s wrongdoing.

Trait of forgiveness has been associated with improves physical, psychological and spiritual well-being and better interpersonal relationships.


It is a cognitive ability in which a person uses his ability to analyze reason and make judgments.

Moral rights and responsibilities are needed to be taken care of while making a decision.

A person who can put himself in someone else’s shoes can be more fair than other thus empathy constitutes a major part of being fair.


Gratitude is a feeling and expression of thankfulness towards others. It includes taking time out of your life and expressing genuine thankfulness.

This gratitude or feeling of thankfulness can also be attributed to transcendent being.

Researchers have established that gratitude leads towards more positive psychological and physical health and helps in reduction of aggression.


Humility is also known as humbleness or modesty.

A little psychological research has been one on humility because of inherent limitations of self- report measure.

A little research done showed that people scoring high in humility are more helpful than others.


Until recently humor has been treated in psychology negatively portraying it as something that entails vulgarity and disrespect.

Current researches on humor have found that it works as positive psychological strength as it can be used to make others feel better, to gain intimacy and to Improve interpersonal relationships.


Integrity has its basis in Latin word ‘Integritas’ which means wholeness. Integrity can be defined as displaying the values that one espouses.

Having the courage to acknowledge the convictions publicly, being sensitive to others needs and helping others when needed.

The knowing oneself component of integrity helps individuals to modify their behavior in an effective way.


It is the strength that makes an individual to perform innovatively and in a clever way.

This is the strength related to the creative mind that makes them effective and productive in every task they perform.


It is character strength that is related to corrective thinking as it opposes faulty thinking.

People having high psychological strength of judgment are aware of their beliefs and value system and do not rely on them entirely to make judgment.


Kindness has been defined as a kind and generous action directed towards another human being without any intention of receiving a reward or to avoid any kind of punishment.

It is just a motivation to help another person. Researchers have established a correlation between kindness and happiness.

When a person starts to perform more kind actions, his score on happiness increases.


It is the ability to identify best in one’s own self and others and make the best use of it rather than focusing on their weakness.

People having this strength are more productive in their own lives and also can bring the best out of other individuals.

We all have certain inherent weaknesses, but focusing and polishing the strength that individuals have can compensate for all other weaknesses.

This ability helps individuals to make a difference around them.

Love of learning

It refers to the desire of knowing. Individuals who have a love of learning want to know about the world around them and about themselves.

Tough love of learning is driven by curiosity but these individuals are never satisfied after knowing something they want to deepen their knowledge and hold on to that information.

Being loved and loving someone

The capacity of being loved and loving someone can be defined as valuing the relationship in which care and love is given by you and reciprocated by another person, it means being close to people.

Martin Seligman identified three forms of love

·         Parent-child love

·         Child-parent love

·         Romantic love

All of the relationships contain any of the above mentioned three types of love. For example a relationship of a friend can have both parent-child and child-parents love as friends look out for each other and also learn from them.


Optimism includes looking towards the future with a positive attitude. It is a mental framework in which individual beliefs that the outcome of certain endeavor would be positive and desirable.

Optimism is important to deal with certain life traumas in life.

Researchers have established correlation between optimism and higher self esteem.

1.      Perseverance:

It is strength associated with continuously working towards a goal despite having troubles and delay in goal achievement.

This strength does not only help individuals to achieve their goals but also it is a strength of engagement which keeps a person engaged in a task and connected a zone where he functions at its best and produces favorable outcomes.

2.      Perspective:

It refers to strength where an individual is able to look at the bigger picture without being caught up in minute details.

It allows a person to see the whole with it’s a part and does not separate one from another.

Researchers have found that in older people perspective taking is stronger source of well-being than physical health.


It is the ability to reason about one’s decision on a practical basis. It leads individuals to analyze their actions objectively and control their actions on the basis of those actions.

These are the individuals who plan with their future in their mind and avoid unnecessary risks.

This ability is associated with the personality trait of conscientiousness. It is also associated with higher achievement in their lives.


This ability covers a spectrum where a person has control from their physical needs to their emotions and actions.

People who have higher self control have more confidence that they can pursue their dreams in whatever way they want to and be effective in their course of action.

They can very well regulate their insecurities and disappointments.

People having higher self control show much lesser symptoms of depression and anxiety and they also have greater control on their anger.

Social intelligence

It is the ability that makes individuals to identify their own thoughts and emotions and others as well.

Individuals with higher social intelligence are aware of other peoples’ motives and know what hits them.

It is very easy for them to fit in different social situations. There are two components of social intelligence:

·         They know about others feelings and thoughts

·         They also know what to do with this awareness


Spirituality refers to the connection with something greater than one own self and most of the time it refers to the connection with a transcendent being.

It also includes having purpose and meaning in life and being aware of one’s place in this universe.

Researchers have established that individuals have higher meaning in life and are more optimistic than others.


Valor can also be referred to as personal bravery. It is the ability of a person to face the challenges strongly headedly and in a firm way.

It enables an individual to achieve difficult task that others are scared to start with.


It is the ability that makes individuals feel full of energy and enthusiasm. It is about approaching life in an enthusiastic way.

People who have this ability are more inclined to wake up early in the morning and live life full of adventures.

When a person is immersed in a job with zest he finds purpose in it rather than thinking of it as a burden.

Appreciation of Beauty

It is an individual’s ability to feel strong emotions of awe and wonder that are instigated by perception of beauty in nature.

For individuals with such abilities, a simple morning walk becomes an experience of life when they appreciate little things such as flowers, cool breeze and birds chirping that other individuals would not even notice.

People with a strong sense of appreciation of beauty feel more positive and grateful than others.


It is the ability that makes an individual a responsible team member and they feel obliged to work in a way that makes the team achieve its goals.

A person feels responsible towards its community and its people. It also takes into account individual’s patriotism.

It has been established that individuals who have high citizenship have more social trust and are more inclined to be loyal with others.

In a nutshell,  we need to adopt and learn potential human strengths to grow and nurture ourselves.

FAQs about Strengths

How can one find his character strength?

The VIA institute that studies character strength provides a personalized test.

This test results in a magnitude of 24 strength exhibited by individuals and you can identify which strength exists in you in the greatest magnitude.

What are psychological strengths?

Martin Seligman, also known as father of positive psychology presented 24 psychological strength divided into 6 categories which are as follow:

Wisdom: Creativity, Curiosity, Love of learning, Judgment, Perspective

Courage: Bravery, Courage, Perseverance, zest

Humanity: Kindness, Love, Social intelligence

Temperance: Fairness, Leadership, Citizenship

Transcendence: Forgiveness, Humility, Prudence, Self-regulation

Justice: Appreciation of beauty, Gratitude, Optimism, Humor, spirituality

What is lesser strength?

Lesser strengths are strengths which are least present in human beings.

These values are not realized or are not used as compared to other strengths.


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