Harnessing hidden talents helps you unlock your true potential
Curious about strengths-based coaching? If you’ve previously worked with a coach, you may wonder what’s different about this approach. Or perhaps you’ve completed a strengths self-assessment, but you’re unsure how a coach fits in. At On The Up Consulting, starting with what’s strong is central to how we work. I’m a big believer in the power of tapping into talents to enable people to discover hidden potential. Here, I’ll share the benefits of focusing on strengths and explain how working with a coach can help.
So what exactly are strengths? Essentially, they’re the things that come naturally and easily to you. Perhaps you have a creative flair, or you shine when leading a team.
Can you recall the last time you experienced a deep sense of fulfilment when immersed in an activity? That’s often a clue that you’re harnessing your talents.
When things are not going well, it’s easy to overlook your strengths But talents often show up while people navigate trying times. Perhaps you lean into your determination to figure it out or call upon your strong network for support.
Perhaps you sense that you’re not fully embracing your capabilities. But remember, you may not use your strengths, but you never lose your strengths. Even if you’re out of practice, your innate gifts come naturally – it won’t take long to pick up where you left off.
Research shows that 100% of us have some form of strength blindness. Yes, 100%! That means that you may not know how talented you are. If you don’t pay attention to your strengths, you’re probably not making the most of them. And that affects how others perceive you. Your boss may not see what you’re truly capable of, or your colleagues may not guess at your hidden gifts.
Ultimately, if you’re not aware of your strengths, you can’t understand your full potential. And you’re almost certainly not living it. That’s a missed opportunity to be your best self.
Focusing on your strengths can really shift your thinking. They are a gift and a responsibility. Consider how you use your talents to serve yourself and others, whether in your business or as a senior leader.
Tapping into your talents has the power to help you discover your true potential. Imagine what it would look like if you leaned into your strengths every day. People who do that are so much more fulfilled and successful. What’s not to like?
Placing your attention on what’s strong, instead of what’s wrong can lift your spirits and help you navigate tough situations. Instead of getting stuck in negative stories and scripts, you can shift your focus onto what you can do and how you can grow from your difficulties.
At a deeper level, it means reconnecting with your true self, with what makes you feel authentically fulfilled, driven and purposeful.
So where does a coach come in? If you struggle to identify your strengths or have a niggling feeling you’re not harnessing them, working with an outside perspective can help.
As a senior leader or business owner, it’s easy to overlook your strengths as there’s not necessarily someone else looking out for them. It’s about helping yourself to delve deeper and find a way through when it feels like things are stacked against you.
While self-assessments can be a helpful starting point, they only flag up the gifts you already know about. Working with a coach can enable you to discover strengths you weren’t aware of or that don’t fit into the neat categories. It’s much more personalised and intuitive.
As a strengths-based coach, I tune into the language that people use. I may pick up on capabilities you miss or minimise. For example, I may hear resilience in how you overcome challenges. I help you to reveal the good stuff in how you’ve faced a situation.
Perhaps a strength is showing up in your home life that you haven’t considered using in your business. It’s a really holistic way of understanding a whole person, including what they bring and how it will serve them in their work and their life.
It’s all about the individual. I don’t give advice or tell people what to do – I ask questions. I listen to what matters to you. My role is to stand in that zone of true inquiry and help the person tap into their resources and insightfulness to create new perspectives and take aligned action.
- Your strengths are the things that come naturally and easily to you. They often show up in the most trying times.
- 100% of us have some form of strengths blindness (Linley 2008). Overlooking your strengths means you miss opportunities to unlock your full potential.
- Focusing on your strengths can help you feel more authentic, fulfilled and successful and help you deal with difficulties.
- Working with a coach can help you uncover hidden talents and find ways to embrace them.
The book Five Ways To Focus helps you gain the clarity and perspective to focus on what matters to you.
Also listen here to me talking to the wonderful Amber McCue about using strengths to unlock potential and navigate challenges