Live and Love Out of Your Strengths

Our strengths are what we can most naturally live and love well out of.  We each have different talents that help us live well.  There are many ways we can love the people in our lives well.  When we know our natural style for living and loving, we can be intentional and more effective in our own unique way.

Each of these pictures represents one of the Top 5 Strengths Themes that I live and love out of.  My themes are Responsibility, Empathy, Discipline, Connectedness, and Positivity.  Can you guess which picture goes with which theme?  (See answers at the end of this post!)

Last week’s post introduced Gallup CliftonStrengths and the benefits of using this assessment to discover our personal Strengths Themes.  These themes are like a lens through which we see the world, describing how we tend to think, feel, and behave in response to life.  As we understand ourselves, we can lean more fully into being the person God has created us to be, so we can do meaningful work, love Him, and love people.

So, how can we use our strengths to live and love well?  I’ll answer this by sharing how I naturally express my Top 5 Strengths Themes.  The beautiful thing is that this will look incredibly different for each of us depending upon what our themes are.  There are countless possibilities, and all themes are equally good!  No Strengths Theme is better than another.

Here’s a glimpse into ways I live and love well out of my Top 5 Themes:

  1. Responsibility enables me to live well as I see what needs to be done and take joy in completing it (even in small things, like doing the dishes).  I show love for others as I serve and care for them.
  2. Empathy helps me live well as I’m self-aware, which helps me slow down when I need to.  It helps me love well as I sense other people’s emotions and am drawn to respond to them.
  3. Discipline helps me live well as I create calm, orderly environments and create organized processes for getting things done.  It helps me love well as I manage my time, and I intentionally make time for the people in my life.
  4. Connectedness shapes the way I think, as I connect the dots between different people, places, and ideas over time.  This makes me sentimental, which you can see in the items I tuck on a board in my laundry room.  This theme helps me love well as I connect quickly with people and notice things we share in common.
  5. Positivity gives me a natural tendency to respond to life by being optimistic and appreciative in problem-solving.  I love well with positivity as I smile, encourage, give gifts, and create beauty.

You’ll notice that these aren’t just textbook answers or something we see on an assessment and forget.  Discovering our Strengths Themes is the first step to becoming aware of our talents, so we can intentionally use them and grow in them.  The goal is to use them do meaningful work and build loving relationships.  When we are connected to Christ and using our strengths, we can be the most effective as we build others up and love them well:

“Instead, we will speak the truth in love, growing in every way more and more like Christ, who is the head of his body, the church. He makes the whole body fit together perfectly. As each part does its own special work, it helps the other parts grow, so that the whole body is healthy and growing and full of love.” ~Ephesians 4:15-16 (NLT)

{Answers for my Top 5 Strengths Themes photos:  Responsibility – sink, with dishes done.  Empathy – Kleenex; this speaks for itself!  Connectedness – keep-sakes saved on bulletin board.  Discipline – organized pantry.  Positivity – writing notes to encourage others.}

 

Are you ready to put words to your personal style for living and loving well?  Discover your Strengths Themes with the CliftonStrengths assessment

If you know your Top 5 CliftonStrengths Themes, how do you most naturally live and love well?  Would you share an example by commenting below?

 

Kathryn Featherstone is a Gallup-Certified Strengths Coach and a board-certified Christian Life Coach. She’d like to encourage you in your journey! Write her a note or see her Coaching page.

4 thoughts on “Live and Love Out of Your Strengths

  1. Joanne

    Your mom and I both have adaptability and empathy. Within six months we’ve had two chaotic situations that we were able to quickly intervene. One just Saturday morning when we had a man trying to get in our front door at 6:30! Within hours his family had him hospitalized with a life threatening condition!
    Your mom also has connectedness which she uses to develop neighborhood friendships, sometimes with needy people. One of my strengths is Restorative which then helps me to be of help to them. So God definitely has us together for a purpose to use our God strengths.

    Like

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