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Realize your Strengths

by Beth on April 5th, 2012

According to Alex Linley, “realizing our strengths is the smallest thing we can do to make the biggest difference”. Using our strengths makes us happy and is the surest way to be successful.

While there are a number of inventories that can be used to identify your strengths, I have been using the Realise2 strengths assessment in my coaching. The Realise2 is different from other assessments because it provides you with more information than just listing your strengths. The resulting profile includes your:

Realized strengths – attributes that you perform well, give you energy, and you use frequently.

Unrealized strengths – attributes that you perform well and find energizing, but you do not use frequently.

Learned behaviors – attributes or behaviors that you have learned to do well because you do them often, but they don’t energize you.

Weaknesses – attributes that you have difficulty doing well and that drain your energy.

What I like most about the Realise2 is that there are specific suggestions for how to use your results for your own development. Ideally you should do the following:

Marshall realized strengths – be careful not to overuse your strengths. At times you might need to moderate the use of a strength given the situation. Perhaps it isn’t an appropriate moment to use your humor.

Moderate learned behaviors – since these are not strengths you will be better off using them less frequently, ideally only when needed. They do not energize you and are less likely to lead to great success.

Minimize weaknesses – since using your weaknesses will rarely lead to success and will drain your energy, you should use them as little as possible. Some of the most successful people have avoided using weaknesses by finding a partner with complementary strengths.

Maximize unrealized strengths – this is your biggest area of potential growth! Looking for opportunities to use your unrealized strengths more will make you happier and more successful.

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