“Because you neglect the specific moments that strengthen you, your life gradually becomes filled up with a grab bag of activities and responsibilities….You start to feel empty.
Aware of these feelings if emptiness but unaware of their source, you take on yet more responsibilities in the hope that by doing more, you will feel more.
These new responsibilities overwhelm your senses. Moment by moment, you feel not more, but less–less resilient, less fulfilled, less strong….
Down the spiral twists, with your days filling up and your life emptying out.”
– Marcus Buckingham,
Find Your Strongest Life: What the Happiest and Most Successful Women Do Differently
I’ve never experienced what Marcus described. Ahem.
I wrapped up this book recently and found it really helpful. I especially appreciated Marcus’s definition of strength and weakness.
A weakness is just like what it sounds…something that makes us feel weaker. And here’s the kicker: That’s true even if you’re good at it. Just because we can (and everyone really wants us to) doesn’t mean we should.
A strength does just the opposite…builds us up, lights a fire within, fuels us for God’s purposes.
As an exercise, Marcus recommends placing a “W” for “weakness” or an “S” for strength next to each activity in your life. I gave it a try and on the first day I ended up with way too many Ws.
Sometimes you’ve just gotta do what you’ve gotta do. But Marcus’s point is that we should move toward our God-given strengths and away from our weaknesses as much as possible.
There’s a free and quick online test that goes with the book (I’ll give the link to you in a minute). It tells you what your primary and supporting roles are based on your strengths. Mine are Creator (primary) and Caretaker (supporting).
I needed to be reminded of that–I thrive when I’m creative and fizzle when I’m not. And God made me that way. And “when He saw all that He made, it was very good” (Genesis 1:31). That means me, you, us.
When I live in my God-given strengths and seek “S” moments that let me live them out, it’s strange how insecurity isn’t an issue anymore. It evaporates. I’m not aware of time passing, of people analyzing, of anything but the joy of being who God made me to be.
I’m curious…What are some of your “S” moments?
And, if you’d like, go to www.stronglifetest.com to take the quiz and come back here to tell us your roles!
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