What Was Your Spark?

Lights, camera, action!

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In my book “Life Matches: Fire Up Your Life!” a book of matches is a physical reminder to use your personal strengths to fire up your life.

Each match in the matchbook represents one of your many strengths or talents.

Each strength requires a spark to light.  What sparks your strengths? Maybe it was an encouraging parent, teach or coach who saw some smoke signals that hinted at your possible strength and helped you fan it into flame. Perhaps it was an experience which put you into close proximity to someone else’s flame that sparked you or it could have been the Holy Spirit’s faint whisper telling you it was your time to shine.  Sparks can happen in many different ways.  What sparked your interest?

Please take a moment to share what or who helped you discover one of your strengths by sharing a spark.  What or who helped you discover how to ignite one of your Life Matches so you could fire up your life?

Please share your spark by clicking on the “Leave a Comment” link that is located under this post’s title.  You might spark someone else’s strength by sharing your story.

#1 Self-Improvement?

Descending the summit ridge

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What is the number one thing you would most like to improve about yourself ? If you succeeded in improving this one thing, your life would become better or happier, or more satisfying.  What would it be?

If you took a moment to think about it, did you choose to improve something you were already really good at doing or being? If you are like many people, did you immediately focus on wanting to fix one of your limitations, personal failings, or fatal flaws?

A lot of people focus first on what they perceive as their negatives at the expense of their potential.  Did you?

Any personal self-improvement plan is basically a goal, a realistic understanding of one’s starting point and a plan of action steps that build a pathway that leads to the goal. The rest is persistence and perseverance. In short, you choose to just do it.

Certainly one may choose to not allow a limited capacity in any aspect of one’s life to keep one from achieving one’s goals or purpose. If something is holding someone back, then setting a goal and creating an action plan to reduce the impact of a personal limitation is a wise decision.

Our frustrations often come when we focus our energies on actually trying to dramatically improve a limitation or “weakness” to the point of where it becomes a strength.  This tends to not work out very often as we have real limited capacities in areas of ourselves that we are  unable to significantly improve even with our best of plans, intentions and efforts.

We end up wasting a lot of our time, resources and potential success, when we focus too long and hard on our limits at the expense of our potential. Focusing your energy and power on your weaknesses often results in making you more powerfully weak, as frustration and perceived failure set in. We often give up when we perceive our efforts as being futile.

Recognize, accept,  manage and minimize your limited capacities and then begin planning to empower your potential using your natural strengths.  Use your gifts and talents in new ways to realize your full potential, purpose and dreams.  Successfully achieving your goal will  require your persistence and perseverance but you have been well equipped for the journey and each small improvement in your strength will fuel your next step.

Focusing your personal power on developing stronger strengths is the key to living a fired up life!

If you would like to learn more about how to live Fired Up!, buy a copy of my book, “Life Matches: Fire Up Your Life!”  Tom Rath’s, “StrengthFinder 2.0” is also an excellent resource to help you discover your strengths.

The full-potential you that you were born to be is waiting to take center stage of your life’s performance!

Is it time to just do it?

Know Your Limitations, Not Your Weaknesses


Image via Wikipedia

I wrote “Life Matches: Fire Up Your Life!” to urge you to choose to live your life Fired Up!  This means that you learn to live your life using your natural, God-given strengths and manage around your weaknesses. The goal is to make your strengths so strong that your weaknesses do not keep you from being the 100% you that you were born to be.

The only thing is, I AM WRONG! 

There is no such thing as weaknesses!  We only have differing levels of capacities.  You may have been born with a limited capacity in one particular personal gift or talent, but it is not a weakness unless you choose to judge it as being one.

Rather than feel dejected and depressed about your weaknesses that never seem to improve, why not accept, understand, and embrace your limited capacities for what they are?  Your limits are something that can keep you humble.  Your limits can keep you safe.  Your limits can keep you using your strengths that keep you on purpose!

A nine volt battery does not have a weakness because it cannot generate 12 volts of power.  It isn’t designed to do so.  The battery is designed to store and deliver nine volts.  It is limited, but it is perfectly limited for its rightful purpose.  So are we all.

The next time you are spending lots of emotional and thought energy worrying about your weaknesses, rename and reclaim them for what they really are…your limited capacities. 

God does not make mistakes.  You are perfectly you with both strengths and limited capacities.  Test and explore your limits and in areas where you discover you have the potential to expand your capacity (strengths) go for it!

You’ll enjoy the warmth and spark of living your life “FIRED UP!”

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