Top 10 Reasons to Discover Your Strengths
In his latest book ‘Tools of Titans’ #1 New York best-selling author Tim Ferriss talks about the tactics, routines, and habits of billionaires, icons, and world-class performers. From his research with over 200 plus world class performers, Ferriss concluded that:
“Humans are imperfect creatures. You don’t success because you have no weaknesses; you succeed because you find your unique strengths and focus on developing habits around them.”
From coaching hundreds of people and teams, I've compiled a list of the top 10 'a-ha' moments that happen when individuals discover and apply their strengths.
1. What comes naturally to you is really difficult for other people.
When we have strengths, we take them for granted because we do them so naturally. We often assume and expect that everyone else can do the same things as us as well as us, and it can be a huge realisation for people when they discover this isn’t the case.
2. You judge other people through your own strengths lens.
Our strengths dictate the way we see the world. They influence how we think, feel, behave, and ask questions. Because our strengths come so naturally to us, we expect everyone else to think, feel, and behave in the same way that we do. When they don’t, it can trigger us into a place of frustration and toxic behaviour. Through discovering your strengths, you can let go of judging other people who are different than you.
3. Trying to build on your weaknesses is a waste of time.
Every single one of us has weaknesses. They zap us of both our time and our energy. It’s the things we dread doing, the things at the bottom of our to do list that never seem to get done. They're the things that give us a headache and fuzz our brain when we’re trying to do them. Discovering your strengths isn’t about ignoring your weaknesses, it’s about owning them and being vulnerable so you can find ways to overcome them.
4. Your strengths have needs.
When the needs of our strengths aren’t met, we can get triggered by feelings of frustration based on the expectations of our ourselves and others. This can lead to toxic behaviours, as we end up overusing our strengths in ways that they show up as weaknesses to those around us. Just as we play to around 8-10 of our strengths, we also have the same number of triggers that routinely frustrate us. These might come from what we expect of ourselves -- internal triggers -- or what we expect from others -- external triggers. When we understand these triggers and how to manage them, we can learn how to better minimise our weaknesses.
5. The people who frustrate you most are in your blind spot.
We all deal with people who are frustrating. When we discover our strengths, we also discover what are areas of weaknesses are. The people that annoy and seem to talk a foreign language to us are always the ones who have strengths we cannot understand. Their strengths are not in our lens, so we are blind to them and struggle to see their perspective.
6. Partner with people with strengths in your blind spot.
When we understand our blind spots, our weaknesses, we also discover who our greatest partners are to help us overcome them. They can see a perspective that we can’t, which gives us an opportunity to get curious and work with them to help us manage around our weaknesses.
7. When you use your strengths you are more fulfilled.
Numerous research has shown that using your strengths is associated with significantly higher levels of happiness, well-being, and fulfilment. When we operate from our strengths we feel truly authentic and in touch with ourselves because we are acting in ways that feel true to ourselves.
8. You understand your wife/husband/partner/child/team mate/boss in ways you never did before.
One of the barriers to successful relationships is understanding yourself and others. As Tony Robbins said in his TED Talk, ‘Why We Do What We Do’ appreciating what’s driving other people is the only way our world’s going to change.
Understanding your own strengths lens and the lens other others makes a huge impact on the success of the relationships you have with yourself and the people closest to you.
9. You can finally own who you are and what you’re not.
Sometimes the people I coach don’t want to own their strengths. They see no value in them because they have spent a lifetime being criticized for being who they really are. Strength coaching helps individuals see they have unique gifts to bring while helping them to let go of trying to be someone that they’re not.
10. You are a unique snowflake.
According to Gallup, the chances of use having the same top 5 strengths in the StrengthsFinder assessment to someone else is 1 in 33 million. I think that makes us all pretty special, don’t you?
Vicki Haverson is a strengths spotter and can see what is unique about individuals, even when they can’t see it for themselves. As an expert in strengths, she can see how to configure a productive team and what might be causing conflict and communication issues. Vickie speaks, coaches, and trains to help people unlock their strengths.
Have more questions? Follow up with the expert herself.
Head of Strengths Development
I’m passionate about helping change the landscape of the work place through understanding, developing and applying individual and team strengths. After 18 years spent working with and within corporate organisations, I have witnessed first-hand what happens when you focus on people’s weaknesses compared to the positive impact of a strengths-based approach. When you focus on strengths team productivity increases by an average of 29%, financial returns by over 30% and areas including employee engagement, client... Continue Reading
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