Sometime it’s hard to know if you’re operating out of your strengths or not. We recently had came up with a list of symptoms that you aren’t operating out of your strengths and I’m going to start a series around these symptoms. In this episode, I’ll talk about one f the ones that I should have noticed in my first job.
It is Friday February 2nd and I’m Josh Newton.
Welcome to the on Josh Newton show where it is all about putting your potential into practice. Today I’m going to do something a little bit different. and I say that all the time so I should probably stop saying it – but we really are going to be doing something different today because I’m starting a little series.
This series is going to be about the symptoms of not operating out of your strengths. Recently I was preparing for a speaking engagement that I had and, this was one of the topics that came up. How do you know you’re not operating out of your strengths? And at first it seemed like a really strange idea to me – you know – how do you not know you’re not operating out of your strengths? That seems kind of crazy. You should know whether this is a good fit for you you should know whether this is really using your natural talents or not. But what I realized and what I started to recognize in some of these experiences and thoughts and conversations that were coming to my head is that a lot of people don’t realize they’re not operating out of their strengths because a lot of people don’t have a really clear understanding of who they are what their strengths are and what are those innate abilities that they have that they should be leveraging.
This just isn’t something that people are really aware of and so, oftentimes, you need something to bring it to your attention that you’re not operating out of your strengths or let you know that what you’re experiencing right now isn’t the way things should be and it’s not the way things could be.
So as I’ve been thinking about this an interesting analogy came to mind. So I go to a chiropractor – not very regularly but every once in awhile I go just to get an adjustment and get aligned. The funny thing that always happens is when I get there he asks me, how are things going? How are you feeling? And my response is almost always I’m doing pretty good you know, things feel pretty good, I’m fine. And in general that’s probably true ’cause I’m sure there’s a lot of people who are experiencing some really bad things from a chiropractic standpoint. But it’s always hilarious once he start saying, “okay well are you waking up with any pain?” and it’s like oh yeah… I wake up with a debilitating pain in the middle of my back and I have a hard time sitting up every morning. Should have thought about that when he said how are you feeling? “okay. How’s your neck doing ’cause I know you had some neck problems?” Well my neck is okay – just the only thing that happens is if I turn from left to right it cracks really loud and I get a shooting pain down my spine. This is literally the type of stuff that happens to me when I go to the chiropractor and it’s completely insane that he asked me how things are going and my responses things are fine.
This is a great analogy and I think it’s exactly what people are experiencing in their day-to-day lives when you talk about this idea of operating out of your strengths. I think a lot of people aren’t aware of how bad things really are because again it’s not something you see yourself doing. Your senses are tuned outwards you’re watching people all the time but you’re not watching yourself. So it’s less obvious when you are not operating out of your strengths.
With all that said let’s jump into the first symptom that I want to talk it out with you guys. The first symptom is feeling frustrated and you don’t know why. Now it’s natural to feel frustrated about certain things and oftentimes it should be pretty obvious why you’re frustrated, what you’re frustrated about, or who you’re frustrated at or something like that. There’s always a thing that you’re either frustrated about or a person you’re frustrated with or something like that. But one of the things I really experienced when I was in a job where at least 90% of what I had to do on a day-to-day basis was a terrible fit for who I was was that I was just extremely frustrated all the time and I had no idea why. I literally come home and just be frustrated and I would you know if I have to handle with my kids or with my wife or just stupid things we get me really frustrated. And the tell-tale sign here was that my wife would actually ask me, “what are you so frustrated about?” and that’s when it actually occurred to me that I was frustrated.
It wasn’t, “What are you frustrated about? Well, my boss yelled at me today… “Why are you so frustrated? Well a user just wouldn’t get off my back about this thing that wasn’t working right in their system or something like that. It was, “what are you frustrated about?’ And I didn’t know… I had no clue. It wasn’t obvious why I was so frustrated but I was taking it out on people that I loved and I was taking it out on people that had nothing to do with what, in the end, I found out I was really frustrated about. But I had no clue that I was actually frustrated with my job, the circumstances, feeling like I wasn’t good at what I did day in and day out.
So this is one of the ones that I think can have the worst impact on the people around you because that frustration and especially not being able to place it on a specific thing and identify that and then deal with it, really affects the people around you and it can really affect your relationships. Not just in work but outside of work. And so this can result in lots of increased conflict, not good conflict, but really bad conflict. And it can also really start to tear down some of those relationships and other things you might have in your life to do feel life-giving outside of that job it’s really frustrating and it’s not a fit for who you are.
So there you have it guys. There is symptom number one that you are not operating out of your strengths. Like I said going to be a series. I don’t know if it’s going to be a 10 part series and 8 part series or something like. This is actually a list that we’re developing within the company right now, and it’s something we’ve used for a couple of trainings. Not just the speaking engagement where we originally designed this and I’m not sure if I’ll go into or not but we actually developed a list for organizations or teams as well. It’s also interesting to see – how can a team start to become dysfunctional if people aren’t operating out of their strengths? So I may get into that. I may not. What I really want to focus on here is helping individuals identify where they’re not operating out of their strengths and help get them out of those frustrating or not so great roles and responsibilities and situations that are really dragging them down and are keeping them from finding that thing that they’re supposed to be doing.
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