"Gift, creativity cure, instinct, destiny, jumps - the "light" version"
I call this the light version because I wanted to see if I could craft this with some "brief" highlights that could have "something....." rather than post something "heavy" that would initially tackle the arena of giving an extensive picture of how a person should view and experience the Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ working in his or her life (something that the books by TD Jakes and "jump" by Steve Harvey get into considerably). I'd rather let that "unfold" if need be, later....
So this is my "light" "experiment" on how to touch on these aspects. If it can lead to anything "deeper," by all means, but that's not for the OP (maybe later replies).
THE BLOG 10/04/2012 06:35 am ET | Updated Dec 04, 2012
The Top 10 Ways to Discover Your Unique Gift
By Laura Berman Fortgang
Everyone has a unique gift — something that is just undeniably “you” and is precisely useful to those around you. It’s much more than a skill — it is an ingrained strength fueled by your deepest passions, and nurtured by an unwavering sense of purpose. Most people never find their unique gift, either because they don’t realize they have one, don’t believe they have one, haven’t attempted to find it, or don’t recognize it when it is staring them in the face. For those willing to start the search, this top 10 is for you.
By the way, you have probably noticed that this top 10 list has 11 items. Isn’t that unique?!
1. Revisit Your Childhood
You have probably heard this before. That's because it works. Think back as far as you can, to pre-school days if possible. Think back to times when you weren't influenced by peers or fears. Back to times when your parents' expectations of you didn't go beyond you playing and exploring in a safe environment. What did you do? How did you fill your days? What activities or experiences created the greatest memories? What was the most fun? The common thread in there is a message that, with a little reinterpreting to fit your adult world, will propel you down the path toward your unique gift.
2. Lost In The Present
When is the last time you lost track of time? Are there activities that you find so engrossing that you don't think about time, or eating, or sleeping? Do you have these experiences at work? Do your hobbies and leisure activities fall into this category? Moments of lost time point towards areas of strong interest and deep passions, another key stepping-stone on the path towards your unique gift.
3. Ask Others
Friends, family, associates, or trusted advisors get to observe you in ways that you cannot observe yourself. Their insights can be valuable, revealing, endorsing, and reinforcing. Many times, their observations have greater clarity than self-analysis that is surrounded by a fog of self-talk. Query some close observers about your strengths, skills, and unique talents. "What makes me unique? What do you think I do particularly well? What is my strongest skill or characteristic?" They may not nail your unique gift, but they will offer clues.
4. Learn From Assessments
There are numerous, scientifically validated assessment tools that can help individuals determine key personality traits, interests, skills, and areas of expertise. Myers-Briggs, DISC, and CDR are but a few. As with asking others, these tools will provide valuable clues. You must be willing to answer the questions as honestly as you can. If you've done these, try the Strengths Finder. I have found it to be very accurate and helpful.
5. Create Space
When you climb to the top of a tree, you see the forest, at the bottom you only see a few trees. Create some space in your life so that you have the opportunity gain perspective. This will help you determine the general direction you should be moving in, which will then lead to a more defined path, and eventually your own personal trail blazed with your unique gift. Unclutter your life from activities, people and things that keep you from having space.
6. Go Solo
This is the extreme of creating space. If you find creating space in your daily life difficult, or if you have created space and are ready to go to the next level, go solo for a week. Go camping, find a cabin, a deserted island, go sailing -- be alone for a week. No distractions. Start listening. After you overcome the fear of being alone with yourself, you will start to hear.
Write down your thoughts every day. Record observations, intuitions, feelings, revelations, and shifts in perspective. Your journal will begin to reveal patterns -- those created by common threads that represent areas of strong interest, honesty regarding feelings, awareness of special skills, and a natural draw toward certain people, places, and purposes.
8. Release The Genie
Imagine that you brush up against a magic lamp, and out pops a genie. The genie says, "I am here to grant you 20 experiences, of your choosing, to be enjoyed sometime in your lifetime." What would your list look like? This list represents more clues. These experiences represent your true values, your interests, and your passions. Then give yourself at least one of these experiences soon.
9. Re-Engineer Your Job You don't have to switch jobs or your profession to find (or honor) your unique gift, though those are possibilities. Start by pulling out your current job description. Identify everything you really enjoy doing, and everything that you have to do but would prefer not to do. Next, identify items that are not part of your job description that you would like to do. Now that you've distinguished the wants from the shoulds, start to rebuild your job into the "perfect" job. Renegotiate what you can!
10. Butterfly Projects
You know the feeling of joyful anticipation as you look forward to a special event or day? Like Christmas morning, or your birthday as a child, or getting ready for vacation, or daydreaming in school on the first warm day of spring. These are positive butterflies, in contrast to those we get from nervous anticipation. Have you ever had positive butterflies while thinking about a project? Perhaps it's a special project at work, or coaching a soccer team, or fixing up the yard, volunteering at church, organizing a golf outing, or looking forward to a quiet day with a book, or preparing for a marathon. Which butterflies might represent your gift?
11. Just Do It
Everyone has something unique to offer. Give yourself the opportunity to find it. A fulfilling life will emerge from a conscientious approach to living and sharing what is in your talent DNA. If you find yourself stuck trying to name it, get a coach or find some like-minded folks and get unstuck. You need not deny yourself the joy of following a fulfilling path, and discovering your unique gift.
Instinct - TD Jakes
When you take baby steps, you discover the strength of your legs before you try to run.
It’s not how many times you have failed; it’s what you’ve learned each time you got back on your feet…Each time you fail, there’s a clue to your future success
….if you want more than just a job, you must know the why and when of a thing and not just the how.
To not prepare for the new territory is almost disrespectful of the opportunity.
More opportunity emerges when you organize a cluttered life.
Destiny - TD Jakes
Destiny is a journey, and you will fall down a few times, and maybe even more. The key that opens the door to Destiny is your willingness to get back up after delay, disappointment, or even disaster.
When you make a conscious decision to have balance in your life, you systematically eliminate the potential for frustration and misery.
Destiny means focusing on a vision, seeing what’s not there yet. Don’t let go of it.
On any given day, I prioritize…After I have prioritized, I focus…Equally important..is the ability to ignore….not be a situation that merits my attention that day.
It is so vitally important that your life has an order and a rhythm so you won’t miss the seasons of life when you are most productive and vital.
Pay attention to the small things because sometimes the greatest opportunity can come through seemingly insignificant events.
...remind yourself that the challenge is part of your destiny. You can't predict where it's going to lead.
Add someone to your life who is smarter, more knowledgeable or accomplished than you and make learning from that person’s experience part of your Destiny.
Know that you’re a work in progress. Look for the signs of advancement and celebrate your moments of growth.
Discipline makes decisions that take you toward Destiny…When you do make mistakes, keep a level head, reassess, and move in the direction of Destiny.
Above all else, guard what goes on in your head.
Protect your head so that your journey to Destiny is guided by knowledge rather than feelings….Keep your thoughts in a good place…Protecting your head is important because discouraging advice will come from the sage experts.
Learn to be selective about whom you share your dreams with.
He asked this friend how he accrued his fortune. The wealthy friend’s response was, “Keep the right company.”….he would spend as much time as possible with the people who would improve his life;
Sometimes Destiny speaks quietly in subtle opportunities at the hands of those we least suspect.
Develop a regular practice of stillness so that you can be attuned to Destiny speaking to you.
The path you travel to Destiny can create as much excitement and drama as a horror movie. You need courage to keep a level head and stick with your strategy, especially when you’re under attack….
You should be scared to make decisions with no information. Good information can unfreeze the paralysis of your mind to make a Destiny decision.
Destiny requires showing courage in addition to changing, demonstrating vision, entering new arenas, stretching, growing, failing, and getting back up again
The Creativity Cure - Carrie Barron
Creativity starts with how you think and then becomes about what you do…When you are creative you can think of alternatives….
You have to be willing to stay the course and do some things poorly or with discomfort. Ineptitude is good because it means that you are letting yourself learn and experience the process. Process is more important for happiness than product.
Learning to act without waiting for the perfect opportunity and embracing a flawed situation will help you progress.
Knowing when to honor and when to resist impulses, when to act and when to suppress will serve you.
You have to incorporate:
A capacity for delayed gratification Points for small victories Using and honoring what you have The belief that results are about incremental steps Patience and a belief in process
Having a work ethic is essential for happiness…But you can take it too far, …sometimes your mental health is more important….
Making what we can, however imperfectly, is empowering, because it is an expression of the self…The next rendition might be more advanced, but a growth process has begun.
…the mind works better when the body is robust.
An active body leads to a passive mind, which is the essence of Creative Capacity…a mind that allows thoughts to go where they will without trying to control them…rely on a well-conditioned body that takes the lead, honors habit, and allows intuition to surface.
Teaching yourself the benefits of long-term gratifications over short-term ones is very useful….a much better chance for happiness.
….when you are discriminating, clear, and self-aware, you can choose well, commit…and feel good about your process. You can refine....
The nurturing situation, or the holding environment, is critical for cognitive and emotional development…identify what makes you feel safe and whole.
Compromise by finding a balance between desire and practicality. Have your passions, but make adaptive choices.
If you really have some defect in your knowledge base…and it disturbs you, then take five minutes a day to learn about the subject…you will start then have the choice to continue in whatever way you deem right.
Jump: Take the leap of faith to achieve your life of abundance by Steve Harvey
Don’t give up on your dream; accept that life is a series of ups and downs and that you will overcome the obstacles.
Reframe your story by looking at the positives.
In every dark moment, you have an opportunity to travel down the hallway of life until you find the right door for you. Even when you get a door slammed in your face, it just means it’s time to turn another doorknob, and maybe another, and another.
Every door isn’t for you.
Even if you fail, you can still end up with opportunities or skills or connections that you wouldn’t possess if you hadn’t tried.
My only job is to keep getting up and allow my hope to propel my life forward. Every morning that I am blessed to see another day, it is yet another chance I have to dream again. It is an opportunity for me to see how I can do it better.
Hoping is an investment….It was the hope of better things that kept me going.
Happiness for me is living a life of purpose. I don't see how a person could be happy without a purpose or mission. The Scripture says, "A man without a vision or a dream shall perish."
Your hope has to be tied to something that you’re gifted at or have a talent for and is in the realm of reality.
What is the one idea that you can begin with today?
All he did was to keep pushing that hope forward until it carried him into a more positive place.
The purpose is that subconsciously you’ll do something each day to bring you closer to achieving your desires.
As you learn to keep your hope flexible, and to affirm yourself and your dream, your confidence will grow. This will put you in a position to take on whatever life has to give you.
Act like a success - Think like a success - Steve Harvey
We have to be aware of the conversation we are having with ourselves about our gifts and talents. What are you saying to yourself when no one else is around? What are the conversations that you are having in the mirror with yourself each morning?
But you have to realize that failure is part of the process when you are on the road to success.
The only way to get back on track is to come up with another plan.
We have to get up every single day and make the choice to focus on the positive....
Every day is an opportunity to see your light as a gift. We all have opportunities that are presented to us on a daily basis. These opportunities show up in the people we meet, the invitations we receive, or the information shared with us. Our response to these choices can determine the quality of our lives.
All of our actions are intertwined, and they prepare us for the moments to come. We don't know when, where, or how our next big moment is going to show up.
At the end of the day, your personal resolve to nurture and grow your gift will be the deciding factor between your success and your failure.
Now please don't walk into work tomorrow and quit your job.
Passion is a strong emotion associated with something you do. Passion is the emotion, but it is never the gift. Some people are not passionate about their gift because they have not yet given themselves the room to actually walk in it yet....do not confuse the passion you have for something else as your gift.
Finally, your gift is not your talents. In fact, what you do well sometimes blocks us from finding out what we do great. I think of talents as the lesser to one's gift. Talents can be learned while a gift is inherent....However, our talents often lead us to exercising our gift.
The first thing you need in your makeup kit is to be the kind of person who attracts rather than repels others.There are no self-made men; therefore, you have to learn the law of attraction to draw the right people to you. You have to be easy to work with, or at least willing to create the atmosphere that makes it easy to work with you.
Next, you have to aspire to be a visionary person with a positive outlook....
You also must recognize your shortcomings and be willing to improve on them...
Finally, you have to respect time - yours and others - by being punctual. You have to be a person of integrity.
An essential part of your makeup has to be getting honest, getting real, and being willing to take on new actions.
Once you have become honest with yourself and you identify new actions for tackling your weaknesses, here comes the hard part - changing your habits....
Knowing what's next is paramount to your success....There's always has to be a what's next.
What separates the dreamers from the doers? Goals...Goals are the key ingredient that helps us stay focused, consistent, and diligent on our path to achieving our dreams.
Goals are essential because they give you realistic, measurable, and specific targets....They can also serve as a handy map for attaining your dreams....
You also have to set up your goals in a way that ensures your success.
If you don't honestly know where to begin, start by just setting up a regular time in your calendar to focus on your dream.
The key is to have the right number of steps that will be attainable and have just the right amount of challenge to keep you motivated and moving forward.
Create goals for your dream that will make your gift come alive.
Until you change your focus and elevate your imagination, your present situation will define you.
Your vision will matter only when it is connected to your gift.
Make sure you are clear about what your gift is before you create a vision...
Write down your vision. Make it simple and direct.
I have learned from my past that the best way for me to accomplish my goals is to put them in front of me where I can see them at all times.
When you focus on your vision and connect it to your gift, you are on your way toward success.
You cannot share your dream and vision with everyone.
I don't want you to deny yourself anything just because you are too proud or stubborn to realize that God often uses other people to assist you in reaching your destiny. These people are like treasure chests waiting at strategic moments in your journey to provide you with what you need. Asking for what you want is the only key you need to open the chest and enjoy the treasure.
Everything we do in life that's worthy of note requires gifts that are beyond our own. How we utilize the blessings of our relationships is the key to making it big....
There is nothing wrong with partnering with someone else.
You also have to keep your eyes open for like-minded people, for others who are on the same wavelength as you.
You need others around you for inspiration and motivation....I also had nothing to prove and nothing to be ashamed of. Recognizing this practically doubled my confidence level. It strengthened me to go forward and ask. You have no idea of the number of successful people who are around you waiting for someone to come up and ask them for assistance or guidance.
You cannot give your best when you don't know what your best is. Knowing your strengths and weaknesses is important because you need to learn how to maximize your wins and minimize your losses....
When you know what you do well, you can develop a strategy for growth.
You never know. You just have to stay open to diversifying your gift.
The more open you are, the faster you will realize your dreams. An expansive vision is necessary when reaching for your life's possibilities....Step outside your comfort zone and try something new, something adventuresome, when utilizing your gift.
Your commitments can develop you, or they can destroy you, but either way, they will define you. Tell me what you’re committed to, and I’ll tell you what you’ll be in twenty years.
The question you must answer is: “Twenty-five years from now, what will I wish I had done today?” That’s the cost of a God-given dream.