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Discovering your “thing”? (Becoming a virtuoso of your own unique ability)

November 8, 2012

You are great at something.

You may not even be aware yet of what that something is but you are already great at something. Discovering this unique ability, this strength that only you have is a large part of your life’s work. And once discovered and named you can then become responsible for it and nurture it and refine it. Eventually you’ll become a unique, one-of-a-kind, virtuoso at your “thing.”

But how do you discover your “thing?” 

Your friends and family can likely already see it. They have a perspective on you that you can’t have. If you really want to know what your “thing” is, start by asking them what they see. A simple, “I’m trying to discover what I’m good at. Can you tell me how have I’ve contributed to your life?” will do.

And right here is where you’re probably telling yourself “I can’t ask my friends that question! Its sounds so self serving!” Well, its not. It’s simply part of the discovery process you’ll use to become more useful, more capable of doing what you are uniquely able to do and contributing to the good of the world. Here’s the deal: Once you know what  your “it” is, then you can you consciously put it in service to others. In that light you can think of it this way: its actually selfish not to discover your thing. We want you to discover it. We need you to.

Other avenues for discovery are the tests and tools that are on the market. Myers-Brigg. The EnneagramStrengths Finder. Kolbe. These are ones I’ve taken and can confidently recommend. Also, the book Unique Ability took me far down the path as well. But honestly, none of these gave me the full picture. They were more like pointers toward what my thing is. And honestly I’m still not 100% sure I got it right. I’m still discovering. (Which is why I’m asking you an important question at the end of this post.)

This process is kind of like an onion. You just peel a layer at a time. And with each layer you get closer to “it.” With each layer you become a little bit more self aware. And as you become more self aware you become better and better able to serve, love, and care for those around you.

And the payoff is huge. Great reward will follow each successive layer. At first it may just be the physic and self reinforcing reward of being good at something – so your confidence increases. Then as you peel further down you find that your joy also increases. Drilling further down the rewards seem to get more and more tangible. Soon it will be things like recognition and likely even revenue.

So, I have a question and an offer.

The question: I’m trying to discover what I’m good at. Can you tell me how have I’ve contributed to your life?

The offer: If I know you personally and you ask, I’ll return the favor. 

 

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10 Comments leave one →
  1. November 8, 2012 12:23 pm

    You have a really beautiful balance of humility and strength that simultaneously puts people at ease in your presence and wins their respect….and you mix a mean martini!

    • November 9, 2012 10:07 am

      Thanks Elizabeth! That’s helpful (and encouraging!) Would you like me to return the favor?

      • November 10, 2012 2:45 pm

        awe, sure. this is virtual, so no one will have to see me blush and implode :)

  2. Julie Gross permalink
    November 8, 2012 12:54 pm

    You have a deep facility for telling folks hard truths in a compassionate and supportive manner. This has been really useful to me over the years and I remain confident you will continue to grw in this ability. And I will take you up on your offer to reciprocate.

    • November 9, 2012 10:06 am

      Julie, Thank you! That is helpful and encouraging….

      You are Britannica!! =) You hold a vast amount of information/knowledge (or know how to find it fast), can synthesize it, organize it, and communicate it in a way that is helpful to others — and you do this really really fast!

      Does that ring true to you?

      • Julie Gross permalink
        November 9, 2012 1:02 pm

        It does ring true…now I need to continue my search for the best way to leverage that one thing!

  3. November 14, 2012 12:49 pm

    You are a believer!
    Not only in God but in living life, the best of people, what the world has to offer, what could be….that is inspiring and encouraging to many. You are not afraid to take risks or make mistakes which has opened many relationships and opportunities for you along with some regrets I am sure. But here you are – still believing and following your intuition and inspirations.

  4. steven hamilton permalink
    November 14, 2012 2:07 pm

    You listen deeply and ponder before you respond with a warm wisdom that can be as challenging as it is encouraging.

    You are a brave catalyst of the Kingdom, expanding our old, limited vision of what the “kingdom” looks like and what “ministry” is…beyond religion and religious activity, but not without. So I think you are ‘both/and’, embracing not only spiritual activities but also enaging the weightier matters of the Kingdom.

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