strengths

My Motivation to Coach

This is my #2 talent in the list of all 34 CliftonStrengths. I love to help people discover their calling, and to help leaders get their people “in the right seat on the bus.”

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What are your top CliftonStrengths? How do they impact what you enjoy doing? How can you focus and maximize that enjoyment?

Find out more at www.wealigncoaching.com

Don't Should on Yourself

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This is a friendly reminder to love yourself.

One key is recognizing the scripts that are running in your subconscious. Identify those voices in the back of your mind that always tell you you’re not good enough, you need to change, or you need to be like someone else before you’re acceptable.

Once you see those for what they are - tyrannical taskmasters - it makes it easier to shut them out. It will take practice, but it’s worth the effort.

You are too valuable to be squashed into something you weren’t designed to be.

Love Who You Already Are

 
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I'm all for self-improvement. I work at it every day, and believe that we should all strive to be the best we can be.

The problem comes when you try to be someone that you're not meant to be. That's a recipe for a life of frustration and disappointment.

Being your best starts with accepting the limitations of your design. Think about it… If you not satisfied with your Real Self - with all your realistic strengths and limitations - in essence you’re saying that your Creator made a mistake. Not good.

If you can adjust that mindset and thank God for how you're made, you’ll release a flood of wisdom and have the proper foundation to move forward with your plans.

Watch this short video for an encouragement.

The Tyranny of Should

 
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“Should”

When I take stock of who I am and see that things are good
A thief comes in to steal my joy, accusing, “But you Should…”

“You Should be more productive.  Your body Should be slim 
That guy right there is so well-liked, you Should be more like him.”

So now there is a rubble heap where my esteem once stood
Knocked down with cruel intention by the wrecking ball of Should

“How dare you be contented.  Your best will never do.  
Try harder still,” his voice demands.  “Become a different you.”

I get back on the hamster wheel determined to improve
But hear him say to my dismay, “the finish line has moved.”

Then in a time of clarity I see I have a choice   
I can choose to tune him out and hear a different voice

I hear, “I am accepted.”  I hear, “I am enough.”  
And where I lack, God’s got my back.  I’m covered by His love

I’ll celebrate my talents working hard at what I do  
I’m doing fine with my design, my limitations, too

I don’t do super-exploits.  Sometimes I wish I could
But I accept me as I am.  I’ve had enough of Should!

Copyright 2019 by Peter Cafarchio

How Comparison Steals Your Joy

Photo by  Fares Hamouche  on  Unsplash

I was reflecting about how I tend to despise my natural limitations instead of accepting them, and this graphic representation came to mind.  I hope you can gain some personal insights from it.

How it works

When I accurately see myself the way I am, with a realistic view of my strengths and limitations, I can have self-respect and a healthy appreciation for myself.

The problem comes when I get fixated on a fantasy version of who I think I should be.  In that version, my strengths are exaggerated, and my weaknesses are ignored or hidden.  It’s unrealistic, but I’m more attracted to that version.  And then when I see my Real Self in comparison to my Fantasy Self, I wind up disliking myself because I don’t measure up.  The result is deep-seated unhappiness with my core identity.

Entire industries spend multiple billions of dollars each year to convince you that you don’t yet measure up to the Fantasy Self.  They don’t mind damaging your self-esteem just so you’ll buy their products to improve yourself.  Pretty sick, huh? 

Social media makes it even worse by broadcasting images that only show our best moments and hide our real struggles.

And if you’re a high-achiever, you might be naturally prone to setting unrealistic expectations for yourself and others.

What can you do?

One plan of attack is to identify the sources that contribute to your Fantasy Self.  A short list might include: entertainment, advertisements, past messages from your family of origin, condescending friends, certain corporate cultures, and your social media feed.  

Ask yourself if these influencers are making you feel better or worse about your Real Self, and then manage or eliminate them. It’s not easy because we’re barraged every day, but a few key choices can make a big difference.

The second approach is to get a good understanding of who you really are – self-awareness.  Do the work using assessments, a coach, and feedback from friends and coworkers to get an accurate view of your strengths and limitations.  And then learn to love and accept yourself for who you are.

What’s interesting is that the better you know your Real Self, the easier it becomes to see (and reject) your Fantasy Self. 

I’ve heard it said that when currency experts are trained to identify counterfeit money, they don’t study the infinite ways the money can be imitated. Instead, they study the unique characteristics (paper type, colors, inks, images, etc.) of legitimate currency. Then if they see that one aspect is altered, they know the bill in question isn’t authentic.

The same principle applies here.  Get to know the real, legitimate you, and it becomes easier to spot the voices trying to make you into a phony.

How about you? What’s one comparison you can eliminate this year to increase your joy level?