I used to think strengths are the things we are good at

9 thoughts on “I used to think strengths are the things we are good at”

  1. You provided wonderful reasons for your choice of writing and why your strength does not have to be your “go to.” I write because I must. Without it, breathing, cooking, exercising, relating in the world is gray. Yogis say be the witness to your life, the filter through which experiences flow. Words flow through that screen.

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  2. I’m glad you found your justification for writing because your words enrich not just you but your readers as well. Great post!


  3. This is so true. It’s how I have felt about career paths, school and writing. I think my dad was the one that pointed out that I was getting stronger in math because I was spending so much time with it. Where I once thought I was weak, I got stronger. Thanks for your post. Blessings to you.


  4. Thank you for this! I pursue many creative endeavours because they strengthen me, but am often caught questioning whether its worth it or not because they aren’t leading to a paycheque/success/ etc.. This is just the perspective shift that I needed 🙂


  5. Peter Meinke is the current Poet Laureate for Florida. He’s written an excellent book called “The Shape of Poetry: A Practical Guide to Writing/Reading Poems.”

    What he says about writing poetry, and writing in general, makes a lot of sense to me. Here are a few of his words of advice:

    “Writing poetry — like all writing for publication — is a tough game. It puts you on the line to be judged over and over, by yourself as well as others.

    “…take an attitude toward your own work that I will call a kind of ‘stubborn modesty.’
    All of us need to be open to suggestions, advice, criticism, to be modest about our work…

    “At the same time, you have to be stubborn. If, after you’ve listened and considered and read and studied, you remain unconvinced, you’ve got to stick to your own guns, against editors, reviewers, the public…

    “Writers are naturally subversive: They’re born rule-breakers. As soon as a rule is stated — that poems have to be unified, or have related images, or be written in stanzas — somebody will successfully break the rule. But you have to know what you’re doing, and why.

    “Writing is worth doing, whether you publish it or not. I think Emily Dickinson was happiest when she was writing, her poems piling up like old love letters in her closet…If you’re hooked on the physical act of writing, you have a good chance of staying at it long enough to say what you were born to say. And if someone recognizes and rewards this, that’s a bonus.”


  6. Again, I totally feel you! I have to admit though, I am- or was- one of the people who believed that our strengths are innate within us. It’s what we’re naturally good at. But reading your post and Buckingham’s reasoning, I realize I’ve been wrong this entire time. It’s a new perspective to adjust to, but it makes perfect sense. A strength is something that betters us. Got it.

    Thanks for this insightful post!


  7. Very interesting. Like you, I read fiction all the time. I hardly pick up non-fiction books. But maybe because I lack ideas to write fiction myself, and yet I like writing, stringing words together to tell a story, I write nonfiction. I write about stuff that has happened around me, my opinions on them. I guess that makes me a creative nonfiction writer?


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