Make the most of what is special about you

There are four principles for fulfilling your potential in life: this article is about the first principle make the most of what is special about you.

There are 3 “marriages” in Life: the marriage with your work, the marriage of love and the marriage with yourself. We can fulfil our potential in each of these areas by paying attention to 4 key principles:

  1. Make the most of what is special about you.
  2. Overcome your inner obstacles to fulfilling your potential.
  3. Learn to feel the support of Life itself.
  4. Take action to improve your life.

 

This article is about make the most of what is special about you.

This is the “quick-win” area: it is affirming to learn about, develop, focus on and express, the stuff that is great about ourselves. If you are someone who finds it difficult to say what is special about you, engaging in this process with the loving support of a coach or a peer group is really beneficial.

There are 5 sub-components:

Your Life-Calling: your purpose in life

Having a Life-Calling helps you to be more successful, happier, healthier, more fulfilled and to live longer! If you put your Life-Calling into your work you will enjoy it more and find it more meaningful1,2,3.

Life-Calling applies not just in giving your gift to the world, your work; it also applies to how you relate to and nourish yourself, and how you engage with your personal relationships and community. Life-Calling is at the heart of how you engage with the marriage with your work, the marriage of love, and the marriage with yourself. It becomes the compass of your life, helping you decide your direction and priorities. Things become clearer and simpler when you know your Life-Calling

Read more about Life-Calling here.

Your Life Vision: how will you know you have had a great life?

What is your vision for a great life? If you have a really strong vision of how you want to be in your healthy, wise old age, then this vision can also act as a guiding star for you. The you of your healthy old age can become a mentor for you, remind you of what is important in life. Once you have this vision, you can plan your life so that you can achieve this vision over the decades (God willing) that it takes to your healthy old age. Also, a positive vision of your ageing process is likely to lead you to engage in healthy, health-sustaining behaviours as you get older, creating a self-fulfilling prophecy (a prophecy that creates actions that make it more likely you will fulfil the prophecy)

Your strengths: what are you great at? What are your talents and skills?

Knowing your Life-Calling isn’t enough, you need to combine it with your skills and talents. The combination of your Life-Calling, your strengths and your personal history is what makes you unique in the world. There is only one of you. Develop this combination of your Life-Calling and your strengths and express them clearly into the word. Be the greatest expert of your particular gift to the world. There is a “you” shaped gap in the world waiting for you to express your potential more fully.

Your resourceful memories: memories of times when you were at your best and in the flow.

Remembering, exploring and bringing these memories to the forefront of your mind will increase your self-confidence and the well-being from these memories will bring out the best in you.

Your circle of supporters: memories of people who believe in your potential – either from the past, in your present life or imagined in the future.

Self-confidence has two components: your view of your own track-record, your own history, developed in point “4. Your resourceful memories”, above. The second component is your memory of the people who believe in you and your potential. This may be people who love you in an obvious way, or it could be mentors, teachers or colleagues who believe in your skills, character and potential.

By remembering the belief others have in you, you increase your self-belief and self-confidence. Self-confidence leads to self-expression and action.

This first principle, “Learning to make the most of what is special about you”, is key to fulfilling your potential, your contribution to the world, happiness, sense of meaning, health and longevity.

The second key principle of fulfilling your potential in life: 2. Overcome your inner obstacles to fulfilling your potential, can be read about here.

 

This blog is part of a series on the four principles of fulfilling your potential in life.  You can read about these principles in the following posts:

  1. Make the most of what is special about you.
  2. Overcome your inner obstacles to fulfilling your potential.
  3. Learn to feel the support of Life itself.
  4. Take action to improve your life.

 

Notes

  1. Amy Wrzesniewski, Associate Professor of Organizational Behavior at Yale University’s School of Management. Wrzesniewski, A., McCauley, C. R., Rozin, P., & Schwartz, B. (1997). Jobs, careers, and callings: People’s relations to their work. Journal of Research in Personality, 31, 21-33.
  2. Achor, S. (2010). The happiness advantage: The seven principles of positive psychology that fuel success and performance at work. New York: Broadway Books.
  3. L. Hill, N. A. Turiano. Purpose in Life as a Predictor of Mortality Across Adulthood. Psychological Science, 2014; DOI: 10.1177/0956797614531799 Psychological Science July 2014 vol. 25 no. 7 1482-1486