Recognizing the Infinite Worth of Ourselves and Others:
Engaging the Strengths of Hope and Kindness
During these challenging times, it can feel like our world is floundering and we are too small to make a difference. Yet awakening personal character strengths such as hope and kindness can invigorate our awareness of the value of each human life. Realizing that all of us matter and that everyone is born with infinite worth offers a pathway to listen to our inner voices, enlivening the light that interconnects each of us with our families, workplaces, and communities across the globe.
How can we wake up to the profound understanding that all of us – regardless of gender, race, religion, ethnicity, socio-economic status, or sexual orientation – have infinite worth?
How can we wake up and undertake the actions, large or small, that lead toward repairing our broken world?
Noticing the essence – the essential worth in ourselves and others – can generate human acts of kindness from the smallest daily interactions to larger acts of social justice. Two pathways toward honoring life’s infinite worth are mindfulness and strengths. Mindfulness practice builds our capacity for awareness of the present moment without judgment. Being aware of our character strengths and using them in positive ways can invigorate our well-being and support our efforts to repair our world, moving toward relationships, communities and organizations that value human life.
Twenty-four character strengths have been identified by positive psychologists as gateways toward what’s right with people (Niemiec, 2018; Peterson & Seligman, 2004). Hope and kindness are two character strengths that can invigorate our awareness. Hope, or future-mindedness, involves expecting a good future and working to achieve it. Kindness is care, generosity, and compassion for others..