Having started my working life without a clear sense of self, I am passionate about inspiring young people to step into their authenticity, own their worth and make life decisions from a position of strength.
Earlier this month, I gave a talk on finding and owning authentic strengths to students at a career support event organised by the Vietnamese Professionals in the UK network. Today, I offered a follow-on workshop to a selected sub-group.
This was primarily a space for participants to reflect on their life experience with appreciation. They learnt to take pride in things that were personally important to them, not just externally validated achievements. They were taught to build a vision from a place of strength rather than to draw a plan for next-steps and must-dos. They learnt from each other and bonded from their shared stories of personal strengths.
Consistent across the feedback forms was an expression of new-found confidence in being proudly true to themselves. I was moved by their enthusiasm for individual expression and authenticity, something I had not seen much in my time at university, particularly amongst the Vietnamese. I was worried that they would be too shy to open up and they all wanted more opportunities to share and listen to others’ stories!
It is heart-warming to be a small part of these motivated young people’s journey to discover and love what makes them stand out as individuals.