If you are ready to be the hero of your story by playing to your strengths, click here for a step-by-step approach.
However, I must warn you. It won't be quite as simple as you'd like. As part of the exercise you will need to ask others to share with you what they think your strengths are.
You may be ready to do this right now, you may not.
Regardless, why not practice a little systergy and outline the strengths of someone else?
On a milestone birthday, for instance.
And just to make giving this gift easier, here's what you could say to each of the guests once they've RSVP'd:
Ralph Waldo Emerson once said, “The only true gift is a portion of thyself.”
So, for [Cynthia's] 40th birthday, we’d like to collectively give her a gift of each of ourselves. For this gift, we envision that we will share with Cynthia what we love about her.
Several years ago, the Harvard Business School published a case study entitled “How to Play to your Strengths” by Laura Morgan Roberts, et al. The thesis of this paper is that we can best contribute to our family and world by developing our gifts and leveraging our natural skills rather than by trying to repair our weaknesses.
The first step in identifying our natural skills and gifts is to ask friends, family, and colleagues for feedback.
For many, if not all, this exercise quickly becomes a double bind because while we probably want more than anything to hear what is wonderful about us, we are loath to ask. That is why this will be such a wonderful gift.
Here’s the template we’d like you to use:
1. Cynthia, one of the wonderful things about you (or ways you add value OR make the world a better place OR make my life happier OR make me happy you were born) is (provide an example).
2. Cynthia, another wonderful thing about you is (provide an example).
3. Cynthia, a third wonderful thing is (provide an example).
The bottom line is, what do you see as being magnificent or wonderful about Cynthia. We are looking to you to identify things that you see that she may not (the what), and then explain them (the why).
So that we have time to compile all of the tributes, will you e-mail your tribute to me by XXXX date?
Thank you taking the time to write this – I have no doubt that this gift -- from our selves to Cynthia’s self -- will be a gift that she will treasure for many years to come.
You may be wondering -- has Whitney done this?
The answer is -- yes.
And it was pure joy.
Do you have a friend that is approaching a milestone birthday?
Is this something that you'd like to do for her?
Is it something that you'd like to do for yourself -- because you are ready to dream?