I take great pleasure in awareness of my strengths and weaknesses, and slightly less pleasure in addressing them actionably. Perhaps ironically (“perhaps”, because I’m not sure that word means anything anymore), one of my biggest weaknesses is an insensitivity to weakness in others.

I grew up among exceptionally strong, flexible, loving, authentic, balanced, effective humans. Only in the past couple years have I had regular and long-lasting contact with many profoundly broken and hurting people. So, not only do I have little experience in being sensitive to weak people, but also I often fail to enjoy their company because I can’t just be myself around them; I have to walk on glass, tip-toeing around their tender insecurities or wounded antisocialism. Clearly, my own heart does not reflect the heart of Jesus, who specifically sought to love and fellowship with weak people. God, give me your heart for every person I encounter. Transform my selfish mind.

Though I spend much of my time minimizing my weaknesses, I have failed to properly develop my strengths. To help begin correcting that mistake, I took the Strengths Finder test, which had been recommended to me by several people I admire.

My top five strengths are pretty much all the same thing:

Input – I constantly consume and collect data and items of interest. (Yup, I am always studying topics of interest, and my album collection should hit the 5,000 mark any day now.)
Intellection – I like to think. (Yup, my mind never stops, which is why I only sleep 3-4 nights a week.)
Learner – I am excited by learning. (Yup, I love to learn. I recently listened to a 48-hour lecture on the history of music, and saw a 19-hour documentary on early jazz.)
Ideation – I am fascinated by ideas. (Yup, I love it when an elegant idea can explain a complex subset of reality.)
Restorative – I love to solve problems. (Yup, I tinker with computers and the human mind to learn how they work, so I can fix them.)

So, my path to maximizing my strengths is clear and unified. I would also like to capitalize on some more specific underdeveloped strengths, for example guitar performance and creative writing. Soon, I’ll start reading the book that accompanies the Strengths Finder test.

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