Have you ever thought there was something wrong with you? Like the way you are? Whether it be something silly like you, don’t like mint chocolate chip ice cream. Or maybe you’ve been told you’re lazy, or perhaps you enjoy live-action role play? Which I’m told is also known by its acronym, “LARP-ing.” You know who you are. I’m not here to judge.
I remember the following moment like it was burned in my brain. I was at a work function, and I heard a woman I slightly knew at the time say, “I’m so Type B, I’m basically Type Z.”
It was like one of those scenes in a movie where everything pauses, and you turn around in slo-mo and zero in on the person who just spoke. And when I did that, my eyes landed on a woman named April.
I immediately walked up to April and said, “oh my gosh, I’ve never heard someone say that before and not be super embarrassed about it. Can we please get coffee?” I wanted to feel about myself how April felt about herself: confident and unashamed.
And thus began a journey in my life where I discovered who I was in a brand new light. The things I had convinced myself to be true were suddenly flipped on their heads.
As I began intentionally focusing on who I was and learning about myself, I began to lean into the fact that the things I’ve previously viewed as negative aspects of my personality actually had good purposes. Instead of “lazy,” I was “present.” Instead of “gullible,” I was “trusting and positive.” Instead of being “intimidated and small,” I was “empathetic and encouraging.” I learned that I may not be the most organized, disciplined person ever, but I care about people deeply, and I’m pretty good with words. I can feel and sit in other people’s hurt and sadness. I can celebrate their successes and quirks. I can also write well and communicate in ways that not everyone can.
Not everyone can sit and play with their kids when the sink is full of dishes, and the laundry basket is overflowing. Yes, I sometimes have to hype myself up Rocky-style before I can tackle an extensive list of tasks, but I was beginning to understand that I had gifts and talents that my Type A, task-oriented friends didn’t.
I realized that although our culture epitomizes Type-A workaholic ladder climbers constantly on the verge of burnout, that was just not me. And that is perfectly ok.
And the funny part is that I’m married to a very Type A man. Although I would never have described him as a “workaholic ladder climber on the verge of burnout,” he has a habit of prioritizing tasks first. But through personal growth and being married to me, he’s learned why slowing down and being present has genuine merit. It’s one of the reasons why he decided to leave his downtown, high-paying job to go into ministry, where he tells college athletes about Jesus.
Over the years, we’ve learned that our very opposite personalities can complement each other best when we appreciate our differences and work together. And we make a pretty kick-butt team. Stuart motivates me to get stuff done, and I help him slow down and be present.
And that’s what I love about CoreClarity. Everyone has talents. And none of us is the same. When we can lean into what we’re individually good at, where we are each uniquely gifted, we can create something versatile, multi-faceted, and simply put: pretty darn cool. If we were all the same, life would be incredibly dull.
When each individual has clarity on who they are at their core, it leads to superior personal growth and superior relational growth, as it has with my husband and me. Not that we are always completely in sync and conflict-free. We have had to work hard in our marriage and learn how to work through the minor conflicts arising from our different personalities.
[This is also where the enneagram has come into play. But I’ll save that for another day…]
I truly believe that knowing your talents will help you discover what makes you unique and exceptional. It will give you confidence in yourself and security in what you bring to the table. You may not be the most organized and disciplined person in the room. However, a flexible nature doesn’t have to be a lack of organization but could be the strength of adaptability. And for example, having this talent could be a great asset as an elementary school teacher. No day is the same, and when working with tiny humans, you have to expect disruptions and immediate needs to crop up. Being able to deal with them at the moment without getting flustered, whether someone is acting out or peeing their pants, is why being adaptable would be a great talent to have as a teacher.
This lightbulb moment happened as I talked to one of my best friends about her talents. It was so cool to see how what she thought was a downfall was actually a fantastic talent to have in her career as a teacher.
These are the moments I live for. To watch as people realize not only do they have talents but sometimes what they thought was a weakness in their personality is a remarkable and super helpful trait to have.
As I’ve said, everyone has talents. Everyone is unique and extraordinary. However, sometimes the world, our culture, the people we surround ourselves with, or even our perceptions trick us into thinking we need to be one specific way to matter. This is a complete lie! If we can figure out what we’re good at, what we’ve been intrinsically given, we can live out of a place of true freedom.
We can be who we were created to be. We won’t have to try to be someone else. There’s only one YOU in the world. So be that person, live your life, and do what you’re good at.
And if you’re not sure what you’re good at, send me a message, and I’ll help you figure it out. It’d be my pleasure!