One of my favourite quotes is Albert Einstein’s “Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish on its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid.”
When I first came across this quote I thought wow. It simultaneously made me feel happy and frustrated. Happy because it is so true; frustrated because not thinking like this is exactly what damages so many people’s self-esteem and self-worth.
Every teacher, parents, child, teen and adult needs to read this. If we all knew this from a young age, we’d all achieve even more and quicker.
Relationships & Playing To Your Strengths
In relationships, people bicker about the other’s lack of ‘x’ or apparent refusal to do ‘y’ or seeming inability to be responsible for ‘z’. This can lead to frustration and questioning the relationship. However, sometimes your partner isn’t doing something because it isn’t a strength and what they and the relationship needs is a better strategy, not just a load of animosity.
For example, maybe your partner just isn’t good at managing money, and for the sake of your happiness and the relationship’s success, you could just play like a team. This could mean you play to your strengths by you taking more responsibility over the finances to begin with. Over time you could help them to become better at managing money, but until that point, you could decide to take ownership over that role in the relationship so as to avoid repeat arguments, relationship problems and relationship dissatisfaction.
Work & Career & Playing To Your Strengths
If the career you’re in doesn’t allow you to play to your strengths and if you’re utterly miserable in it, maybe you need to consider a career where you can play to your strengths. Remember also, your “weakness” can actually be your biggest strength in the right career. If you’re staying where you are, you could speak to your boss about how you’d like to make better use of your strengths. Perhaps you could use it to your advantage in your current role or perhaps you could take on a different role there, one that allowed you to…play to your strengths. You’d be happier, feel more valuable and perform better which would benefit you and the company.
Health & Fitness & Playing To Your Strengths
If you want to lose weight or get fit and healthy and you see friends do so following a regime that fills you with dread, then that is not the approach for you, no matter how many people rave about it. By trying to follow these and giving up quickly, we can feel like a “failure” when really it has nothing to do with that. Find your strengths and passions and use them in a way that helps you to achieve your objectives. Notice how many different exercise approaches there are now? Pole dancing, “hip hop abs”, ballet workouts and so on. These have been devised because someone recognised that swimming or resistance training at the gym isn’t for everyone. By playing to your strengths you’ll enjoy it more and, therefore, stick at it long-term.
Playing To Your Strengths Creates Happiness & Harmony
We can easily feel lacking in worth, even those of us who are extremely talented and intelligent, just because we’ve been judged by others on one very specific factor alone. We too can judge others but we are all different and we all have different skills. Life is about using your skills in a way that helps you to be happy and feel fulfilled and hopefully make a positive contribution to our world.
Relationships are also about recognising that we all have different skills. By helping others to fulfil their potential and by allowing all units to play to their strengths, we all become happier and our relationships more successful as a result.