One of the books I’ve been reading this week is Atomic Habits by James Clear. I can recommend it. There are many great ideas and stories there.
The purpose of this post is to share one idea that made me laugh out loud.
The Truth About Talent is the title for chapter 18. In it, James outlines a series of questions to help you hone in on the area you should focus on, based on your personality and genetics, to have the best chance of success. He mentions that you can find your niche by noticing that thing that you do that causes you less pain then it causes others!
The mark of whether you are made for a task is not whether you love it but whether you can handle the pain of the task easier than other people.
~James Clear, Atomic Habits
I found that hilarious but real. It’s another way of finding your strengths. Usually, the idea is to list what people often ask you to do. Or you list things others often appreciate that you do. It’s a way of recognizing something that is so obvious to other people but which you find so easy as to render it invisible to you.
The work that hurts you less than it hurts others is the work you are made to do.
~James Clear, Atomic Habits
Based on our natural inclination to compare ourselves to others, it becomes straightforward to remember and to recognize such tasks. I found James Clear’s questions in this section helped me realize several qualities I hadn’t entirely clarified for myself. Although his wording made me giggle, the question can help with identifying essential distinctions to consider in career choice.
Try it and see if the idea helps you become more aware of your own unique combination of personal qualities that should be a part of your professional brand and daily focus in your work.
Your career is yours and yours alone. You have the power to create it and live it as an expression of your unique talents and energy.
Forget what other people think of your choices. Even though people often mean well, you will be the one putting in the hours so be selfish enough to do something you enjoy and have fun with it!
Being yourself in your work gives power, creativity, and freedom. You are off track if you feel insecure or like a pretender at work.
Look Inside Yourself, You Know the Answers
Take note when you find yourself fully engaged in a work activity. If it feels as if you are in the zone, or plugged in and energized, or connected to something larger than yourself: Pay special attention.
Then describe it further…what are you liking about what you are doing? Is it this? Is it that? Keep asking yourself and you’ll know when you hit the answer that feels right.
Start general then get more specific in your description of what you like about what you are doing. For example, is it the communication or connection? Is it the performing or beautifying? Is it the helping or healing? Is it the organizing or administrating? Then add more detail by asking why.
Respect the Career Development Process
The beauty of a great career is in the way it unfolds.
Enjoy the present moment. Each small step adds up until you are absolutely ready for more.
Appreciate then forget when you felt lost or frustrated in your career. Through those times, you learned more about what you DO want.
Understand the Power of People
People can be powerful and brilliant in sharing their connections with others. Cherish and maintain your connections to tap into the power.
People can be dark, egotistical, and negative, but this is nothing compared to an individual in harmony with self. Recognize the negative as the weaker power and stay beyond it.
See and applaud the strengths of others as you do for yourself. Be a builder-upper who is generous with knowledge, info, and positive energy.
Be an Opportunity Bulldog
Take your individual strengths and mesh them with your public identity, and no one can take your place.
Research and understand the opportunities that exist because of the challenges in your field of expertise.
Present a passion for being or finding the solution and be unafraid of asking for the opportunity.