Strengths and Weaknesses

We all have strengths and weaknesses. Some people are better at communication, some are better at problem-solving. While utilising your strengths is great for following your passions or earning money, it is usually your weaknesses that are holding you back from progress.

Playing to your strengths is often promoted as a good idea. If you work on improving your strong points further, you’ll start to stand out, developing more considerable expertise. Though most of the time, it’s your weaknesses that are holding you back in various areas of life. Imagine a programmer who writes code behind the scenes of a website for a tech company. Suppose he has several years of experience with websites and is quite socially awkward. Working on that strength of being a good programmer may help improve their career slightly but working on weaknesses like communication skills and assertiveness will probably make it much more likely for them to be promoted to a more senior role. Likewise, a skilled communicator may find it more beneficial to work more on the technical skills required for their job.

Playing to your strengths can only get you so far. Working on improving yourself in your weakest areas is where you’ll usually see the most significant benefits to your life. Improving on your weakest areas will make your life feel more balanced, and you may experience a greater sense of well-being. Improving on your weaknesses can often bring greater benefits to your strengths than trying to directly develop your strengths. If you notice this, it’s the first step to living a more balanced life.

Improving on your weaknesses often takes courage and self-discipline. It will be uncomfortable for socially awkward people to go to more social events. It may be challenging to find the time and effort to consciously try and improve your weaknesses. You should realise that doing a small amount to improve your weaknesses can have a much greater effect than doing a more substantial amount to develop your strengths.

The advantage of working on your weaknesses is also to bring better balance to your life. You may realise that your life may be lacking in some areas but abundant in others. Consider improvements in areas like exercise, diet, sleep, career, finances, friends, relationships, networking, spirituality, charity, communication, state of mind, happiness, passions, hobbies, emotional stability, etc.

Improving your sleep could be the one thing that improves your productivity at work and gets you a promotion. Improving your diet could bring greater happiness, energy, and feeling of self-worth. Working on your spiritual side could alleviate stress and improve well-being, while also enhancing emotional stability and communication, which in turn could advance your career. Spending more time on your passions could give you a greater sense of meaning and purpose in life.

Improving the other areas of our lives can often be the best way to achieve greater balance while also developing our strongest areas the most. If you feel like working on your strengths is providing diminishing returns, don’t neglect the other areas of your life — it could be critical to the next big step forward in your life.