Let’s face it, none of us are perfect. We’ve all got things we’re absolutely amazing at, the things we excel in, our strengths. Then there are the things we’re not so good at, the things we struggle with, our weaknesses. And that’s normal, I mean jeez who’d want to be perfect anyways, imagine the upkeep!
But on days where we’re struggling to keep afloat, the ones where we’re stressed, exhausted, and just feeling so damned emotionally vulnerable, that’s when we tend to focus on our weaknesses.
And it doesn’t half play havoc with your confidence.
Did you know however, that recognising your weaknesses, looking into your very core and discovering yourself for who you really are, is actually the biggest sign of strength there is? Because the moment you get honest with yourself, that’s when you can start to work on doing something about it.
Having a Word With Yourself
Right it’s time for some home truths, so brace yourself things could get ugly! Take some time to sit down with pen and paper and make a list of the things you’re good at and the things you’re perhaps not so good at. And remember… be honest. This process should help you face up to the reality of the situation and yes there are going to be things on there that are probably going to make you feel a bit rubbish. But there are also some things on that list that are going to make you feel amazing. Recognising your weaknesses is half the battle, so well done you’re almost there. Now let’s work on a plan of attack.
We All Make Mistakes
Sometimes weaknesses are only labelled as such, as a result of something not going right first time, or through bad planning. For example, say you tried to run 5K having never run before. It doesn’t mean you’re weak and destined never to be a runner when you end up doubled over on the side of the road feeling as if your lungs could burst. Of course that’s what the outcome was gonna be! You move on and you learn from it and you treat the mistake as a positive thing.
You’re only human, so of course you’re going to make mistakes from time to time, but the real strength comes from rising to the challenge of not making the same mistake again. Action that plan, break your goal into sizeable chunks and before you know it, your perceived weakness has transformed into your strongest strength.
Be Unique, Be You
Some people may consider the things that set them apart from others, those small nuances of differences, the quirks, as their weaknesses. But no, they couldn’t be further from the truth, as it is exactly this uniqueness that brings forth great things in the world. So you go out there and own it girl!
And anyway, since when did blending into the background and running with the herd, ever do anyone any good? Diversity brings new, exciting ideas that help boost creativity, productivity and positivity. Never be afraid to let your differences shine, in fact you make sure you damn well shine a spotlight on them.
We’re all works in progress sure, but ultimately you are who you are and that is good enough. In fact it’s flippin’ awesome.
Ask For Help
OK, so we’re forgetting that some weaknesses can’t be ignored, and nor should they be. But instead of carrying on trying to make good something that quite frankly probs ain’t ever gonna happen, swallow your pride and ask for help.
There is absolutely no shame in admitting that you’re no good at, for example, working out your accounts. Don’t sit there banging your head against the calculator, move on, get over it and hire someone to do them for you. The strength comes from solving the problem, not from failing at the task itself.
Find Your Devils Advocate
If you can’t be honest with yourself then it’s time to rope in a friend who’ll do it for you! And it can’t just be any old friend; it needs to be someone you trust, someone who knows you well and someone who doesn’t mince their words.
There are just so many ‘yes folk’ out there though aren’t there? Who tell you what you want to hear, driving you forwards and filling your cup to the brim with positivity. And jeez that’s good on so many levels, I mean we all need our cheerleaders, but you absolutely need somebody to balance that cheeriness out, with some cold hard truths. Because it’s the devils advocate who makes you question and confront things that you may either be putting off or even be in complete denial about.
And sometimes we don’t even recognise our own weaknesses, and if we don’t recognise them we can’t change them, which is where a good old honesty pal comes in. I mean I’m not saying it needs to be a go all out ‘let’s attack the weak girl’ witch hunt, no one needs a complete and utter personality annihilation. However, a personality audit every once in a while will certainly help you rebalance and reassess how you present yourself to the world and this in turn will empower you to become the very best version of you.
Maximize and Minimize
It goes without saying that you should be maximizing on your strengths and minimizing your weaknesses, but how exactly do you go about doing that?
Start by taking a look at that list again, you know the one you wrote at the beginning of this post. Focus on the strengths list for a moment and have a think about the ways in which you can maximise them; turbo charge them if you like. If they are mainly work related, think about how you can use these strengths more often, or the ways in which you can develop and expand on them. Or perhaps they’re fitness related strengths, in which case again focus on taking this strength to the next level and using it to help others.
It’s likely that you already do far more of the things you’re good at, however you can have too much of a good thing, and nobody likes a smart arse. Hone your strengths, master them sure, but remember to use them in the right amount, at the right time and in the right way.
Now take your weaknesses list, screw it up and throw it in the recycling bin.
Because you know what?
Weaknesses are what make you stronger, and you’ve just showed them who’s boss!