Vitality and zest refer to an approach to a life marked by an appreciation for energy, liveliness, excitement and energy. A vital person lives life as an adventure to be approached wholeheartedly. A life of vigour allows one to experience the overlap of the mental and physical realms of experience as stress decreases and health increases. Vitality differs from contentment because it involves greater psychological and physiological activation and enthusiasm.
How to demonstrate this Character Strength:
Movies: Cinema Paradiso (1988-Italian), My Left Foot (1993), One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest (1975)
Music: Came Here for Love (Sigala, Elle Eyre), Piece of Me (MK, Becky Hill), Lean On (Major Lazer & DJ Snake).
Suggested strategies that correlate with this strength:
- Do something that you already do, but with more energy, including some creative and different elements.
- Exercise at least 2-3 times a week, and notice how it affects your energy level
- Do a physical exercise of your choice on that you don’t “have to do” and that you are not told to do.
- Improve your sleep hygiene by establishing regular sleep time, eating 3-4 hours before sleeping, avoiding doing any work in bed, not taking caffeine late in the evening etc. Notice changes in your energy level.
- Think of ways to make an assignment more exciting and engaging before you undertake it.
- Do a physically rigorous activity (bike riding, running, sports, singing, playing) that you have always wanted to do but have not done yet.
- Sing in a choir or play an instrument
- Attend a dance club, concert or a performing art event
- Watch a sitcom or a comedy film weekly
- Socialise with friends who like to laugh heartily.
- Do at least one outdoor activity weekly, such as hiking, biking, mountain climbing, brisk walking or jogging for an hour
- Take time to celebrate your next two accomplishments and victories
- Call old friends and reminisce about good old times.
By monitoring the above, you will be able to catch when there is an incongruence in this personal strength. An incongruence will compromise you and cause inner conflict, so the above will help you keep on the right track.
Niemiec, R. M, 2017, Character Strengths Interventions, Hogrefe, Boston
Tayyab, R., Anjum, A., 2005, 340 Ways to Use VIA Character Strengths, University of Pennsylvania