Inside Out

Inside Out.

An Unconventional Approach To Personal & Professional Development

 Posted by Brenda Lockwood on Mon, Jan 14, 2013

Too often people spend valuable time and energy trying to “fix” their weaknesses. The conventional approach to personal and professional development relies on identifying an area for improvement and developing an improvement plan. This approach assumes if we fix our weaknesses we will succeed. The problem with this approach is that your best bet for success lies in building on who you already are, not trying to become someone you are not.

 When people tap into their natural strengths and talents they act

with more capability, confidence, happiness, direction, hope and authenticity.

The conventional approach to development also assumes if we are already good at something we don’t need to worry about it. The researchers at Gallup® have proven, through more than 30 years of research, that the best opportunity for people to grow and develop– and net their greatest return on investment ­– is to identify ways in which they most naturally think, feel and behave, and then build upon those talents to create strengths.

The better you can apply your talents, the greater your potential

to consistently act with more confidence, direction and hope.

Taking a strengths-based approach to personal and professional development yields a deeper level of self-awareness and leads to greater satisfaction in life and at work. Approaching life from a strengths perspective taps into your innate power and potential.

Gallup® Researchers have identified Three Key Truths at the core of strengths-based development:

  1. There is a strong connection between who people are and what they do best.
  2. There is a strong connection between what people do best and how people feel.
  3. There is a strong connection between how people feel and how people perform.

What do these key truths really tell us? Increasing your self-awareness and building appreciation for the uniqueness of your personality is key to unleashing your greatest potential and being at your best every day.  Why is increasing self-awareness so important? Because people often take their most powerful talents for granted, and many of us are not fully aware of what our most powerful talents are. Taking a strengths-based approach to personal and professional develop requires attention and intention. Knowing who you are allows you to bring your best self to your relationships, both personal and professional.

The following questions will help focus your attention on your greatest strengths:

1. What are you good at? Make a list of ALL of the things that you do well.


I am good at:

-making others feel welcome

-seeing the “big picture”

-working with others

-getting things done (projects at work, home…)

-problem solving

2. What themes are present in your list? Explore the list of things you do well and write down what these things have in common.



-Connections with others

-Discipline (routine/structure)


3. How do these themes show up in your life?  Reflect on the list of commonalities and what they reveal about what motivates you, energizes you, how you influence others and how you manage your daily responsibilities and build relationships? Let me know if you discover anything new about yourself!!! Until next time…Be Courageously You, Brenda   Be Courageously You!