It’s a universal dream to do what we’re passionate about. The only problem with this aspiration is that sometimes the thing we most care about isn’t what we do best.
Don’t worry! This doesn’t mean your dream is dead. It just means that you need to figure out how to bring that dream to fruition—using the skills you currently possess. Sure, your dream will be tweaked and altered. But, at the end of the day, you’ll still be able to do what you’re passionate about.
Here are four questions you should ask yourself to help make that happen:
1. What Skills Have Helped You Thrive?
During your childhood and school years, you’ve no doubt developed certain skills out of necessity. Think about situations that have challenged you: Is there a common thread among all of them? If so, that’s something that you’re good at. All you have to do now is figure out which field or position that skill is best suited for.
2. What Makes You Feel Strong?
“Our strengths…clamour for attention in the most basic way: using them makes you feel strong. Take note of the times when you feel invigorated, inquisitive, and successful. These moments are clues to what your strengths are.”
Consider also your go-to task when you feel overloaded. When you are overwhelmed, you want to feel in control. To be in control, you do what makes you feel strong. As you identify and focus on what makes you feel strong, you can also expect to be happier, which makes you a better problem-solver in a wide range of circumstances.
3. What Made You Stand Out as a Child?
As children, we do what we love to do—even if it makes us an oddity. When you look back on your childhood pastimes, you are likely to discover an innate talent.
Is there something that made you peculiar when you were young? Could it actually be your superpower?
4. What Compliments Do You Tend to Ignore?
All too often, we’re oblivious to our strengths. When you do something reflexively well, it’s easy to overlook it. Keep your ears open for compliments that you habitually dismiss, not to be coy, but because this thing feels as natural as breathing. It may even be you’ve heard a compliment so many times, you are sick of it! Why can’t people praise you for the thing you’ve worked really, really hard to do well?
The tendency to deflect compliments around what you do well is understandable, but over the course of your career, it will leave you trading at a discount to what you are really worth. “In every work of genius we recognize our own rejected thoughts; they come back to us with a certain alienated majesty.” Don’t assume that just because something comes easily or seems obvious to you, it’s not rare and valuable to someone else.
Are there compliments you repeatedly dismiss? Any of your superpowers not on your resume?
There is no shortage of jobs that need to be done and problems to be solved, but there’s only one of you. Once you’ve homed in on your underlying assets or your core strengths, you can more easily identify your distinctive strengths—what you do well that other people in your workplace do not. If you’re looking to be successful, look for problems you feel especially passionate about, then get to work, by playing to your distinctive strengths.
“What we achieve inwardly will change outer reality.” ― Plutarch
Lovely Thurdsay people!