There’s a big difference between having a dream that propels you to achieve and pulling an idea out of thin air that has no connection with who you are and what you can do.
You must have some kind of “rating” for knowing if the desire you have matches the abilities you possess.
Warren Bennis, author and leadership expert, has developed something to help people with this issue. He offers three questions you can ask yourself to identify if what you want to do is possible.
- Do you know the difference between what you want and what you’re good at? These two things don’t always match up. To be successful, you need to be doing what you’re good at.
- Do you know what drives you and what gives you satisfaction? Sometimes people get it in their heads to do something for the wrong reasons. Maybe the job they want doesn’t look like hard work, when in fact it is. or they want the rewards that come with the job, not the work itself. When what motivates you lines up with what satisfies you, it is a powerful combination.
- Do you know what your values and priorities are, and what your organization’s values and priorities are? The more you can align these two, the greater your chance of success. If you and your employer are working at cross-purpose, success will be difficult to achieve.
Measuring the differences between what you want and what you’re able to do, what drives you and what satisfies you, and your values and those of the organization reveals many of the obstacles between you and what you want to do. At that point the question you need to ask yourself is whether you are able to overcome those differences.
One of the main keys to being successful and fulfilling your purpose is to understand your unique talents and to find the right arena in which to use them. Some people have an inherent ability to know who they are and who they’re not. Others have to work hard to make those discoveries.
Poet and critic Samuel Johnson observed, “Almost every man wastes part of his life in attempts to display qualities which he does not possess.”
Your goal should be to waste as little of your life as possible.
Check out John Maxwell’s book, The 15 Invaluable Laws of Growth
“Discover your uniqueness; then discipline yourself to develop it.” — Jim Sundberg, Former MLB catcher