What Is the MAXIMIZER Theme
Maximizers are the people in our lives who instinctively focus on strengths and naturally take things to the next level. Specifically, they love to bring people, things, and ideas from good to great, great to excellent, excellent to epic. They did not come here to play small, so moving a situation from poor to fair or fair to good is simply not their speed; they prefer to do big things, so they emphasize and concentrate on greatness—in themselves, in others, and in the world. They are drawn to excellence, fascinated by it, and also students of it. At their core, Maximizers are solution-oriented and they are willing to go to great lengths to guard and preserve their vision and their energy. Personal development is a priority for them and they will innately shy away (maybe even run away) from overly negative people and situations. For them, life is not about “fixing” what is broken; instead, it is about capitalizing on what is already there, accentuating it, transforming it, and evolving. It is their unshakable impulse to constantly push themselves and others into greater, more expansive expressions of who they are and what they can do. Identifying excellence—or, the potential for it—is what they do best, and in doing so they reveal layers of the world that were hidden or dormant before. They teach us and show us how to raise the bar and truly go for it.
Why Should We Care
These are the people who can bring out the absolute best in us and in teams. They have a natural confidence that tells them that people are always capable of rising higher and becoming more. And, they embody this spirit enthusiastically and without judgment. For them, life is a continual series of steps forward—the point is not to “arrive” but, instead, to constantly improve. Over time, they cultivate a certain type of charisma that is contagious and inspiring. We might feel spontaneously joyful, or capable, or even heroic after a conversation with them. They have a gift for drawing out the points of greatest potential in others. Maximizers help ensure that we don’t rest on our laurels, that we stay hungry for more, and that we get the most out of our time here on earth. In that way, when we connect with a Maximizer we often feel the world and our whole lives open up into a sphere of possibility: not what is, but what can be. They can teach us how to say Yes to life.
Ten Things to Know About People with MAXIMIZER
1. Intuition. Even though they may be social and, in ways, extroverted, Maximizers are deeply aware people who have highly evolved intuitions. It is one of the ways that they so quickly identify the already existing strengths of others and know just how to cultivate them.
2. Intensity. They generally have an intense, yet somehow calming, presence. Others may find them a bit mysterious, which can lead to a curiosity about them and their inner-world.
3. Human Optimization. They are usually connoisseurs of some form of personal development. The model or philosophy may vary, yes, but they are drawn to the ideas of those who have discovered something and then created a structure around it so that others may, too, develop along those lines.
4. Inner-Circle. Maximizers have an understanding that we are all the average of the people we spend the most time with—so, they aim intentionally to spend time with other driven individuals.
5. Grumbles. Being inherently strengths-minded, Maximizers generally have no tolerance—none—for complaining and nit-picking. Don’t be surprised if they casually, or abruptly, set boundaries around negativity.
6. Sleep. For Maximizers, sleep might seem like an inconvenience. It may also be something that they track methodically, tinker with, try to control or understand, and establish schedules around.
7. Networking. They are likely to see someone’s strengths first and personality second. So, their broader personal and business networks can be staggeringly diverse—almost like the ornate gears inside of a wristwatch—where each person they know plays a key role in their vision for life and for the world.
8. Pressure. Maximizers don’t seem to mind when others have high expectations of them. They may even prefer it that way, as it brings out their best. They have an accurate gauge of what they can and cannot deliver.
9. Measuring. Being able to benchmark progress and growth can be hugely important to them. They like to be able to see what has been done and track how something or someone has evolved. From there, once it feels concrete, they take great pleasure in celebrating successes.
10. Love. Maximizers have a powerful enthusiasm that seeks constant expression. It is likely that love is an action word for them; so, collaboration, teaming up on projects, and pursuing some type of venture can feel deeply connecting and soul-nourishing for them in their relationships.
Zach Carlsen is the grateful lead blogger at StrengthsLife.com
His strengths of Ideation, Connectedness, Input, Strategic, and Empathy have taken him all over the world. He is an inventor, athlete, joyous wanderer/wonderer, translator, poet, and Gallup Certified Strengths Coach.