August 11, 2015
When we listen to the messages that our own strengths carry, we see that we can add limitless value to the world.
There is a saying, “When the student is ready, the teacher arrives.” That is to say, simply, we cannot learn something that we are not ready to learn. How could we?
But there is a difference between not being ready and not being able.
The best physics professor in the world, for example, could tell a baby everything there is to know about quarks and gluons—and it wouldn’t matter how eloquent or dumbed-down it was—it would be an exercise in futility. The baby, here, is simply not able to learn the depth of what the professor has to teach.
However, what if we replaced the baby with an average person and had the professor give it a go? What if we, then, replaced that person with a physics undergrad? And, after that, replaced the undergrad with a working physicist?
Notice how with each ‘replacement’ the possibilities of the conversation level up. The average person would absorb some of what was said, the college student would gain a little more—but the two physicists…
They would be able to dive in to the heavy stuff right away. They would be able to explore the ideas together, take them a step further, maybe even disagree and debate. And why?
Because they are already familiar with the concepts and the vocabulary of the topic at hand as well as the nuances and the BIG questions involved.
And that is what it feels like to live from a place of strength and to be constantly finding news ways of letting that light shine. Familiarity is at the very core of what the strengths bring to our lives and to the world—they make each one of us experts. Once we have identified our strengths, we have language at hand that describes us. One that allows us to talk about what we already know and do best.
In that way, the strengths, when we listen to their guidance, create compass points, which steer us to and from people and situations that resonate with our highest truths. A teacher to someone who is high in intellection might look very different from that of someone who is high in ideation. Both are, nevertheless, valid.
When we listen to our strengths and allow them to guide our actions and reactions, we might find that we meet less resistance—from others and from ourselves—because we can hone in on true sources of wisdom, growth, and understanding.
How do you listen to your strengths? How often have you felt like that baby being taught physics? How often have you felt like that professor?