Articles and News

Five Ways to Overcome Your Weaknesses


When clients receive their Strengths Profile report, guess which section they look at first? Do they rush to look at their Strengths - the things which they're good at and give them energy? Do they turn straight to Learned Behaviours to discover what is de-energising them that they should do less of? Well... no. They skip straight to the back of the report to look at their Weaknesses. Why are our weaknesses more interesting than our strengths? We almost seem to revel in them. Wouldn't our time be better spent identifying and harnessing our energising strengths?

The answer is yes and no. Today I'm going to show you five ways that you can overcome your weaknesses and make sure they don't stop you from thriving in your career.

It will help to use a personal example here. One of my weaknesses identified in the Strengths Profile is "Planner". The report says "You may find it hard, before starting tasks, to think carefully and establish timeframes. For you, having a plan is not essential, since you prefer to just see how things work out in practice."

Oh yes, this is me to a tee.

However, it can be very difficult to run a business without having some kind of plan and sticking to it. So, how do I overcome this difficulty and unwillingness to plan? There are five key strategies that I deploy.

  1. Find a hack. Whatever your weakness, there will be someone in the world who has created a simple way for you to do that thing quickly and painlessly. For me, I found Michael Hyatt who is a guru in productivity and focus. I use his simple tool "The Full Focus Planner" to ensure I have a plan that has actionable goals which I plug away at every day.
  2. Create a habit. Because we don't enjoy using our weaknesses, it is a good idea to create a habit to ensure that you get the "thing" done. For me, I use the FFP every day - once in the morning and once in the evening. At first, I scheduled these uses into my calendar to make sure it became a habit. Now I do it without even thinking about it.
  3. Engage your strengths. Think about which of your energising strengths you can use to make the task more enjoyable. For me, the planner engages my key strengths of Writer (you write in it several times a day), Action (it enables me to take focused actions) and Gratitude (I record what went well each day and each week).
  4. Tie it to your Values. If you can tie your activities into your Values, your motivation for doing that will increase. One of my Values is "independence". A very good business coach (Karen Murray) once told me that planning would actually free me up to do more of the things I love. It's true - the plan creates space for me to flex my independence muscles.
  5. Find someone who has a strength in that area. Ultimately, outsourcing or delegating your weaknesses is liberating. I use a Passionate PA in my business. The Passionate PAs have strengths in planning out marketing strategies and sales funnels and all sorts of other great things. Invaluable when I need to create plans to execute my other plans...!

So, what are your weaknesses and how do they stop you thriving in your career? Which of these strategies could you use to your advantage which will help you to overcome your weaknesses? I'd love to hear how you've deployed them.

If you would like this weekly blog sent directly to your inbox, as well as receive a copy of my “Top 3 Ways to Boost Your Career Happiness Right Now,” please click here.