Your Strengths Can Be a Double-Edged Sword

Ever have those nights where you just don’t feel like getting much work done? I guess tonight’s one of those nights for me…I’ll write this post out and see where I go from here.

I’ve noticed that people’s greatest strengths can be their greatest weaknesses – a double-edged sword. At this point, I’m unsure how to address the weak portion without compromising the best parts of those traits. No one’s perfect, so I guess the best you can do is work to improve the weaker aspects. This is strangely reminding me of Fight Club.

Anyway, I’ll share what I think are two of my greatest strengths to illustrate what I mean about those becoming greatest weaknesses as well.

Strength #1 – I’m very cool under pressure. Actually, I tend to be in my element when things are going wrong around me and others are freaking out. I have the ability to objectively assess the situation, come up with the best ways to address the problem, and take action.

On the other hand, the “coolness” of my personality has definitely led others to think that I don’t care or that I’m not passionate, when in fact I am. Being outwardly demonstrative of my emotions doesn’t come naturally to me, and this has hurt me on different occasions.

Strength #2 – I consider myself a very independent person. I generally do very well on my own – I have an idea of what I want to do, and I follow through without having to ask others to point the way. I’m confident in my own abilities, and I take pride in being competent.

Yet this independence leads to a problem area – I don’t like asking for help, even when I really do need it. I suppose it’s pride, maybe a little bit of stubbornness. But it’ll take a lot for me to finally ask for help, and by the time I do, it’s a bit too late. In these instances, I definitely could have done much better getting help earlier.

Hold on, I think I came to a realization while writing this. If you’ve seen the ending of Fight Club (which I won’t spoil for those of you who haven’t), you’ll probably see a connection. I think it’s actually quite possible to work on those weak areas without having to compromise the strong areas. They can be separated. You won’t lose that entire trait. [Side note – I don’t know how well this analogy matches up, but hopefully you get the point.]

Sure, it’ll take time and a lot of work. And there’s no guarantee that the weaknesses will go away completely, but it’s possible. Maybe it would benefit me to be more demonstrative of my emotions. Maybe I should forget about pride and ask for help as soon as I realize that I need it.

That’s life, right? Learning, growing, and becoming a better person.

The first rule at

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