Personal Strengths & Weaknesses

What is Important About You?

In a society obsessed with pigeon holing and fitting in, the above question is rarely asked nowadays and, in the rarities that it is, is usually answered with modest mumblings of social roles and how well the children are doing in school.

And the reason? Because it’s deemed as socially unacceptable to hold your hand up and say ‘I’m a brilliant leader’ or ‘I’m a great listener’ today. Because being different is no longer seen as being ‘Special’ but as ‘Not fitting in’.

And the effects? Well… we begin to believe it! We convince ourselves that we are not special, that anyone can be a brilliant leader or a great listener. If we are unable to sing our praises about our personal strengths, then we begin to accept the weaknesses as normal.

Personal Strengths and Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats

So is there any wonder that we have begun defining success materialistically? Or is it just the only way we can express what is important about ourselves?

Each and every person in the world is special. We are all placed and born in to the world with a different and unique combination of skills and qualities, almost like a mixed bag of seeds to grow from. But the thing is that, if we are not aware of what our strengths are then, we won’t be able to sell ourselves or grow in the right direction.

Similarly, if we aren’t aware of what our weaknesses are then we will never learn to tackle them, and by not doing so we’ll never learn how to value ourselves in the process; in other words we will grow in the wrong direction.

So I ask you to leave the mumblings and modesty behind you when considering your personal strengths and weaknesses. Unlearn the belief that it is a sin to express any pride for our achievements, or use our strengths and skills, or be different to others. Flaunt that fact that you are special. After all, the world would be a very underdeveloped boring place to be if everyone thought the same things wouldn’t it?

What Are Your Strengths?

It takes a great deal of quality experiences, knowledge and feedback to discover what we truly excel in; what makes us think, behave and dream differently to others.

For example, I was extremely shocked to find out that a good friend of mine was unaware of his strong leadership skills until they were brought to light by an event that involved him using them. As it began to dwell on him, it became apparent that he was proud of this accomplishment. He began to think back and notice a trend in his behaviour.

The fact that, in a team, everyone naturally came to him and he was generally always positioned in a starring role. His talent was in leadership. His strengths were in people management, communication and organising.

The moral? Society says that it’s wrong to think about why you are important, but it often takes a deep consideration of this to discover what infact we are actually good at; a knowledge that can help us to generate career choices, decide whether we would soar in certain opportunities or simply which positions to take within team challenges. It also takes voicing what your good at, to get the opportunity to prove it.

You can discover what your strengths are in so many ways, usually by questioning yourself. After everyday consider why you lived it the way you did. There are many analysing quizzes out there on the web and in books, that can help you to understand where your skills lie, but often a study of the way we think differently to others can work as, if not more, effectively.


I stumbled upon ‘Finding Square Holes’ purely by accident, in an attempt to understand what my Dad did for a living. I was simply rooting through his folders and books when I found the book that was soon to become my bible. I admit, I have become a bit of ‘Square Holes’ basher, but only because every exercise within the book is useful.

QuAKE is one of the exercises within the book, one that my Dad often gets his audience to participate in to build up their self-confidence. I find it’s particularly useful when answering awkward chair-shuffling questions in interviews and filling in CV’s. After all, if you don’t believe you are special, or even know how you are special then, how can you convince anyone else that you are?

Qualifications – What proof do you have of your personal strengths?

Abilities & Skills – Can you play guitar? Are you easy going? Any talents?

Knowledge- What do you know about yourself? Of others? Of the world?

Experience- What have you gained and learned from the past?

Your achievements, knowledge and strengths help to define and enhance our talents. Remember though that skills don’t just have to be academic, infact it’s often what we learn outside the classroom that counts, you could be quite a creative person or quite a logical person. That in itself, that way of thinking, is an ability or skill that someone else might wish that they had. So why waste it?

If your personal strengths are in designing, then shape your life around channelling this. It’s much easier to become valuable to the marketplace, to your friends, to your family if you exceed in it because using our personal strengths comes more naturally to us. A psychologist called Gardner divided human strengths into seven categories;

Spatial – The skill of being able to judge and calculate distance well.

Logical – The ability to identify, solve and reason with abstract problems using a logical or mathematical mindset.

Musical – The capacity to play, create and appreciate music.

Bodily Kinaesthetic – The ability to control and sync body movement in the form of sport or dance.

Linguistic – The skills to read, write, listen and speak with skill and fluency.

Intrapersonal – The ability to feel empathetic and sensitive towards other peoples emotions.

Interpersonal – The capacity to interact, have impact on and understand others effectively.

Take some time to consider which category you think that most of your strengths lie in? How did you become aware of your strengths in this category? How does your personality, hobbies, talents reflect this?

Time to Think Back…

Think about one of your greatest achievements… what skills were you using? Who were you working with? How did you achieve this achievement? Why might someone else have struggled more with achieving this than you did? What areas do you have knowledge in that someone else might not?

What do other people value in you? Have you ever been told that your a good listener? Determined? Creative? Survey people that you trust, and look for trends in the feedback that you hear. What words re-occur?

Study the way in which you work in a team, not necessarily in work or school but in relationships too. What roles do you usually take? How well do you take orders? Have you ever lead a team? How successful were you?

List the major roles you currently play in life, e.g Mother, Manager, Sister. In what ways are these roles important to you? To whom else is it important? What do you offer them that is unique?

With who do you work best? Do you work better with friends? Strangers? Alone? All of these conditions are strengths in which you should aim to base your patterns around.

Making the Most of Your Personal Strengths


Strength vs Weakness

With a clear idea of your strengths in mind, take a long, hard look at where you are in life today. Are you playing to your strengths? A day revolving around your strengths will be a day that will feel much more fulfilled… is that how your days are spent?

If the answers to these is no then consider the steps you could take today to change that, because it’s much easier and much more enjoyable to succeed in doing something we’re good at than something we are not. You’ll feel much more motivated towards the day if your career, school courses, relationships reflect what is good about you.

My top tip for making the most out of your strengths? Use them! Now that you have identified them, whenever you can, practise and develop those special skills that makes you, you! If you’re a brilliant leader, then say so when asked ‘Who wants to lead the team today?’ If you know you work best on your own, then work on your own.

There’s nothing more draining for your mindset than knowing you could be doing more or watching someone do something that you know you could do better. So never be afraid to leap in. Even though time is changing, skills will forever be skills.

If we identify what we are good at as a strength rather than a skill then we can easily learn to adapt to the ever changing world outside. Never believe that your skills are outdated, they just need to be updated.

“What Are My Weaknesses?” – Overcoming Weaknesses

What do you think your personal weaknesses are? Are they keeping you from starting something new, from pursuing a dream? What are your fears? What is holding you back?

The main weakness in human nature, the hurdle that stops us from reaching success is our limiting belief in ourselves.

Personal weaknesses can dull your strengths - Personal strengths and weaknesses

How we see ourselves in called our self-concept. We may see things that other people don’t see, they may see things in us that we cannot see. Our self-concept is coloured from childhood by other people such as our parents, our friends and our boss. They may tell us that we work too slowly or that we are rubbish at maths. Humans judge. It’s what we do. But the thing is that, particularly in childhood, people will try to tell us what kind of person we are before we have the chance to discover it ourselves! So really… what we may have seen as being a ‘weakness’ may just be something that we never got the chance or never bothered to attempt again and develop because we saw no point in doing so.

What I’m trying to say is that, although we should seek and look for trends in feedback, we should always make our own mind up about our personal weaknesses. Your personal weaknesses may not just be as simple as ‘Not working well in a team’ infact, this could just be a pessimistic way of saying ‘I work really well on my own’.

The key to overcoming your weaknesses is to let that weakness, grow into a strength; something that, with the right mindset and attitude, can be easily done. It’s a simple tool. If you begin to think that weaknesses aren’t really weaknesses then you will no longer feel limited in your everyday life.

Consider what aspects you feel are not your strong points. For example, ‘I get bored easily of large projects’. Now consider it in a different light, consider the opposite perspective of the situation e.g  your strengths. Chances are that if you get bored easily of large projects then, you work quite efficiently on smaller ones.

So how can we apply this? Make changes to the way you work! Only take on small projects, break larger ones into smaller tasks. You aren’t a fast worker? So work on things that involve thought and thorough work.

You’re a good leader? Aim for a job that involves using these strengths and avoids using things that involve you taking a secondary role. You aren’t a creative thinker? So talk to someone who is, and learn to become one.

It’s easier than you might think to live life without personal weaknesses, but it’s hard to forget that we all have them. The key is to keep your focus positive, and the rest, I assure you, will fall neatly into place.

Next Page: Inspiration & Drive
Wrote by Aimee Hall