Thursday, November 05, 2015

Your Strengths Are Also Your Weaknesses

Your strengths are your weaknesses.
-From a teaching on the Enneagram (
We have all taken tests that show our personalities, our preferences, our comfort zones, our strengths, and our weaknesses.  It seems logical that we would exploit our strengths and the best parts of who we are.  In general this is true.  However, too much of a good thing can be a bad thing.  I am a nice person but sometimes I am too nice.  There are times when I need to be less accommodating and to assert my own will by not always giving in to what other people want.  I am an analytical person but sometimes I over analyze things.  I am a perfectionist but sometimes this is taken to extreme and is little more than anal retention.  I am usually calm, laid back, and centered but sometimes I need to be more assertive and pro-active with a greater sense of urgency.  We need to look at our strengths to see how we may overuse them.  One thing that helps me is a daily thought I receive for my particular personality.  Some days this thought tells me I need to remember my strengths and to use them.  Other days the daily thought warns me about some of my dysfunctional tendencies and encourages me to do the opposite of what I usually do.  I believe all of us need to be more self-aware and to understand our behavior.  I know myself well enough to usually see when I am at my best, when I am at my worst, and when I am feeling stressed.  We all have patterns of behavior for better or worse that are closely tied to our personalities.  Most people believe their personalities are who they are.  This is not true.  Your personality is actually a defense mechanism that you created early in your life as a way to protect yourself from the world around you and to help you get what you thought you needed in life which is primarily love.  I am nice, accommodating, and calm most of the time because sometime in my childhood I received the message that I needed to be this way in order to be loved.  Each of you received your own message and much of who you are today and how you act is the result of those messages.     

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