Conventional wisdom tells us that successful people focus on their strengths, while pretty much ignoring their weaknesses. If you want to win—and win fast—you can’t afford to waste time working on your weaknesses.
Conventional wisdom also tells us that when you focus on your strengths, you grow them more, but if you devote energy to strengthening your weaknesses, you will get mired down in mediocrity and never excel.
What do you think?
Sounds like pretty typical advice from career experts, doesn’t it? Kind of makes sense, don’t you think?
But what if your strengths don’t align with your passions? What if you are already bored with your strengths, and feel as if you are doing the same thing every day? What if you want to learn something new—something you never tried before? What if you find out that you have passion for something you never imagined doing? Isn’t doing something completely new a weakness because you aren’t focusing on what you already know (that is, your strengths)?
Passion without strength is better than strength without passion!
Also, if your passion lies in weakness, it can turn into a strength in a short time!
Sure, having a lot of strength in a field is great, but having strength in something without passion will lead to burnout. The call to focus solely on your strengths is a call to establish a fixed mindset and live a lazy and boring life in the long term.
While on the other side, the call to focus on your passions is a call for establishing a growth mindset, learning, growing, and Turing your weaknesses into NEW strengths!!
As Jeff Bezos said,
“You don’t choose your passions; your passions choose you”. When you have a passion born inside you, it is born there for a reason. So keep noticing the passions that are born inside and don’t ignore them, test them, and give them some time either to grow or fade away. Remember that truly successful people like Jeff Bezos, Elon Musk, and others built their careers on their passions, not on their strengths. Their passions then became their strengths.
Don’t fall into the strength trap like others did.
PS: Know more about your passions, and how to turn your weaknesses into strengths in my recent book “Time to Move On”