Winona State University’s 2024 Women of Wellness (WOW) conference featured sessions designed to raise curiosity about work-life integration, courageous challenges, the power of vulnerability, and the resources to renew one’s life.

Bethany von Steinbergs, a CliftonStrengths® Consultant and Coach, supported WOW as a Lunch Sponsor and shared her thoughts on why the words we speak to ourselves matter.

Bethany von Steinbergs

In my last 8.5 years in a consultative capacity, I have worked with thousands of amazing individuals, each with unique talents and perspectives. After interacting with so many people, there is one thing I believe now, more than ever: words matter! And more specifically, the words we speak to ourselves matter.

I have been using the CliftonStrengths® assessment as a tool for better understanding, leading, coaching, and consulting individuals and teams for more than 20 years. CliftonStrengths® is a psychometric assessment to identify an individual’s innate potential. The assessment is rooted in positive psychology, and yet, when many individuals receive their results, they immediately frame them in a negative way. People with Discipline® talents might describe themselves as [‘finicky’], and those with Adaptability® might say they are ‘indecisive.’ Those with Intellection® might say they are ‘overthinkers’; those with Command® talents might say they are ‘bossy.’

Suppose a student described themself as [finicky], indecisive, an overthinker, and bossy. What would you think about that person? What if a student described themself as organized, easy-going, reflective, and comfortable leading? Would you have a different impression of this student? Now, let’s say that person is you. If the way you describe yourself, whether spoken or unspoken, is colored with negativity and deficit thinking, how likely are you to step into your greatest potential?

Brené Brown says, ‘Talk to yourself like you would talk to someone you love.’ Are you able to see others’ amazing attributes, but struggle to see or name your own? Take time to discover what you do best and how you are hard-wired for greatness. You are worth it. Your words (about you) matter!

Bethany von Steinbergs

CliftonStrengths® Consultant and Coach

Bethany von Steinbergs

Bethany encouraged WOW conference attendees to share a recent “strong moment” when they had:

  • had a sense of satisfaction/accomplishment
  • experienced automatic success and the feeling of being “in the zone”
  • learned something rapidly
  • done an activity they were drawn to
  • sensed time flew by
  • felt others recognize their ability

In addition to von Steinbergs’ presentation, the Spring 2024 WOW conference also featured the following wellness topics: Holistic Leadership, Sound Bowls for Calm, Neuroscience Unveiled, and Mindfulness Is Your Superpower.

The WOW Conference was made possible by sponsorships from KIMT 3, Rochester Women Magazine, WSU Foundation, Olmsted Medical Center, Mayo Clinic, Well-Being Index, Flourish Consulting, and Rochester Local.

Plans are underway at Winona State to respond to the continued demand and offer more wellness programs in the future.