Friday, January 29, 2010

Building Personal Strength - Why You Should Consider Doing It

I've been hearing the term "personal strength" in the media more often these days. That's a good thing. But it's important to define it well. My take on that...

In a subsequent post, I illustrated by giving over 40 examples of important behavior patterns that I consider to be personal strengths.

Yesterday I explained what you have to do if you want to make a personal strength even stronger. A really smart thing to do....

Today I want to explain WHY you might want to go to all that trouble.

The short answer is, working on your personal strengths is key to achieving your goals. Here's why...

People do outstanding things and achieve amazing results for four basic reasons:

1. They know how. They have the knowledge, skills and experience to do what they have to do.

2. They want to. They have the requisite passion, desire and motivation. It's really, really important to them. They have wind in their sails.

3. They have the stuff they need to get the job done. Authority, guidance, information, resources, allies, systems, tools, supplies, facilities...whatever, you name it. How did they get all this stuff? I don't know. But they did.

4. They have personal strength. They have the heart, grit, character, inner strength - whatever you want to call it - to do the hard things in the face of adversity. And there are always unforeseen challenges. The Suprise of the Week, etc. Always. I'm talking about bringing integrity, courage, optimism, initiative, creativity, patience, perseverance, focus, effort....I could go on and on.

It would be a good idea to make sure you're up to snuff in all four areas. When you think about it, if you're weak in any one of these areas it could hold you back.

But I think the deal-maker or the deal-breaker is personal strength. You may know how, and you may want to, and you may be empowered with a lot of stuff. But when the going gets tough, you'd better be ready to do the hard things. If you quit when you're exhausted and discouraged, you're done. If you lie, cheat or steal because it's easy to do and it gets you something you want, you're done. If people start thinking you're untrustworthy, you're done. If you don't take action--and lots of it, you're done. If you don't stay focused, you're done.

And so on.

So that's why you might want to pick out one of those 40 strengths and start doing it more often, to build up the behavior pattern, even though that's not a particularly easy thing to do. Yes, even at this stage in your life.

Achieving your dream may depend on it.


Sean said...

Now with 40+ personal strengths to choose from, how do you know which ones you need to develop? Certainly they are not all equally important. And some of them seem a little similar, so there may be overlap. Are there 1st and 2nd tier strengths? Do some depend on others? How would one measure a personal strength?

Unknown said...

Sean, good questions!

The important thing is to focus on one strength at a time. Later, focus on another. So I advise studying the list and picking the one you personally feel needs work.

Yes, some strengths sound similar. They may in fact be closely related. Some have subtle differences, some have huge differences.

The important thing is to do the work, make your self stronger, if that's what you want to do.

In a couple months my company will release a new online service called ProStar Coach, which will make the self-assessment and self-development process easy.

Thanks for you comment!