From what I’ve heard, the subject of this message may hit a little too close to home for all my friends and family in the Shenandoah Valley today after nearly 2″ of rain… That’s not where I’m going with this, give me some rope… Hopefully I won’t hang myself on this one…
Over the last few weeks, I’ve written about the importance of finding your sweet spot, illustrated in The Law of Priorities (chapter 17 of The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership), and how the best way of doing this is often by practicing The Law of Awareness (chapter 2 of The 15 Invaluable Laws of Growth). On the way to Dallas, I read a book completely dedicated to identifying and working from your natural areas of strength. While this seems to be a very logical concept, how often do we actually do this?
When I recall the bits and pieces I can about middle school and high school, I have painful images of all the extra “help” I was able to get for the subjects I wasn’t doing so well in. I can’t think of a single time where I was given any extra attention or resources in math, the subject that came easiest to me at the time. Quite frankly, I don’t know that I ever a single discussion with a math teacher other than simply being the first to answer questions in class. (“Someone had to do it, so I did. Now can we move on?” I’ll cover that in more detail in another message when I explain why I’m so impatient and blunt…) As good as I was in math at that time, I can’t help but wonder how much better I could have been had there been an intentional focus put on this area.
Now back to the floods… If I’ve heard it once, I’ve heard it a thousand times: water always takes the path of least resistance. I don’t think we need to put a lot of time into debating that. Floods always point directly to weak points in ditches, roads, etc.; sometimes with deadly effects. But is that what we’ve been trained to do? When I had to spend time in the English classroom before or after school to get a passing grade, did that even resemble a Path of Least Resistance? It certainly didn’t feel like it!
Does this sound familiar to you at all? Sure, it may be different subjects but I’m guessing you have at least one similar story.
How about now? How much time do you get to focus entirely on the things that are your strengths? Can you even identify them? This isn’t as simple as just naming the things your company pays you to do. I mean those things that you truly get the 80% return from just 20% of your effort; and you should be enjoying them too! If you can’t point to them now, don’t worry. We’ll work through that more over the next few weeks.
Talk with you soon,