Every year we make New Year’s resolutions and those declarations drive our activities in January and sometimes through December. You can see the Diet books, stop smoking books and quit bad habit books all spiking on Amazon in early January.
Why don’t we make resolutions that challenge us to magnify our strengths?
Think about it. Most resolutions attack the negative things we do in our lives. When was the last time you picked something you do well and resolved to be even BETTER in the next year? These resolutions not only leverage an existing asset, they gain momentum via positive feedback, and you might actually keep it.
In his landmark book, Now Discover Your Strengths, Marcus Buckingham makes a convincing case that it is far easier to increase your strengths than to eliminate your weaknesses. His book also gives you useful tools to help you identifty and isolate your greatest strengths. If greatness is something you want to achieve, take a different approach this year.
Write down three strengths that you have. Use your areas of success from home to personal to find these. Pick one of the three strengths and write out three things you can do, starting Janaury, to improve in that area. In 2004, I did this and it was the best New Year’s resolution ever for me. I picked out my ability to speak in public as a strength and I started three habits in January; got speech coaches (Public Words), read about the great speakers (one book every other month) and begin to tape and listen to my talks (like a ballplayer looks at game tape). By the end of the year I felt like I improved in that area — and I saw financial results from it too!
Try this exercise this year and be amazed at the power of positive resolutions that help your soar with your strengths in 2007!
Recommended read: Now Discover Your Strengths by Marcus Buckingham
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