Written by Jenny Blake The Big Ol' Blindspot you might be missing is not about how to set better resolutions, how to stick to them, or even how to ditch them.
It's that you might be glossing over the one thing most likely to help you feel happier and more successful: building on what is already working.
Build On Your STRENGTHS
“From the cradle to the cubicle, we devote more time to our shortcomings than to our strengths.” ―Tom Rath, StrengthsFinder 2.0
It's so easy to fall down the rabbit-hole of what isn't working in our lives, particularly this time of year. What we suck at, the habits we are failing at, and the big promises we want to make to ourselves to correct some area of lack in our lives. Find a job! Find a mate! Lose some weight!
When working with my brand strategist Adam on JennyBlake.me, we often returned to the idea that the best ideas result from an expression of who you already are.
So instead of trying to incrementally mitigate your weaknesses, how can you bust a grand slam out of the ballpark with your biggest strengths?
Research shows that building upon existing talents, strengths and marketable skills provides much more leverage than marginally improving on weaknesses. As Tom Rath says:
“When we're able to put most of our energy into developing our natural talents, extraordinary room for growth exists. So, a revision to the 'You-can-be-anything-you-want-to-be' maxim might be more accurate: You cannot be anything you want to be—but you can be a lot more of who you already are.
The most successful people start with dominant talent—and then add skills, knowledge, and practice to the mix. When they do this, the raw talent actually serves as a multiplier.”
―Tom Rath, StrengthsFinder 2.0
Hustle & Flow
As I shared over on JennyBlake.me last week, my word of the year is (Hustle &) Flow.
After an often-confusing year with change so intense it was sometimes debilitating, I'm also choosing to re-focus on what is already working in my life and business. An excerpt from that post:
After a year of Alignment — the precision, structure, daily habits of meditation, yoga and not drinking — I’m declaring this the year of FLOW.
The surrender, movement and momentum of Flow, but — lest you think I’ve fallen off the woo-woo reservation — served up with a healthy side of hustle.
Grit and grace. Focus and release. Strategy and surrender. Effort and ease.
If you want to become full, let yourself be empty. If you want to be reborn, let yourself die. If you want to be given everything, give everything up. —Lao Tzu, Tao Te Ching
Your Turn . . .
Before you go any further trying to fix what's broken, I want you to take an Inventory of Awesome.
Make a list of 25 things in your life that ARE working: habits, strengths, talents, creative ideas, even people and relationships. Now circle just one or two that, if you were to focus on elevating those through education, focus and practice, would take you from good to DAYUM I'm great!
See? That wasn't so hard. And you might even find a much greater sense of excitement and motivation by doing this exercise and narrowing it down to strengths you're jazzed about.
I'd love to hear from you in the comments:
Resolutions, Schmezolutions. What strengths will you build on in 2014?