wavy pattern

when who we are isn’t helping (part 2)





why your strengths aren’t *always* good for others

- Posted byHannah Miller

Hello dear reader,


I have vivid memories of the leadership team meetings I was involved in when I was an assistant headteacher (or an ass head for short, which was a valid description at times to be fair).

Every Tuesday we would have a long leadership meeting. The first half would often be around a specific strategic issue, and the second would be around the stuff of the here and now. I quite like meetings, if I’m honest. I do my best thinking when talking and enjoy knowing what is going on and being kept in the loop. The problem with some of these meetings was when I felt that we were still talking about things that had clear and obvious solutions (aka my idea/ viewpoint), we weren’t moving to action (I really like action) or we hadn’t considered how this decision we had made might make people feel (huge driver for me).

When these things happened, I had the tendency of doing the following two things: 

What was going on here? My strengths were (once again) not operating well – in fact, they weren’t operating like a strength because that would suggest they were working in my favour (and the favour of those around me). No, they had gone into overdrive making it difficult for me to operate well. They were in fact causing a fog that undermined the contribution that I could make. It meant that I was perceived in a way I would never have hoped for, and acted as a blocker to our success rather than a facilitator.

Sometimes our strengths get in the way, and they become hugely unhelpful for the people around us. Sometimes we turn the volume up on our very talents and they get so loud that it is impossible for people to hear them. They end up being perceived in a way that we don’t intend and undermine the progress we might make and the relationships we might deliver. 


Sometimes a misdirected strength or talent can lead to misperceptions

The very things that have the potential to be us at our best (for others), can also be us at our worst (for others)

Just because something has been identified as a potential strength in your life, doesn’t mean it’s working for the good of others right now

A C T I O N 

Here’s a great question to consider:

What does it feel like to be on the receiving end of you?

Love, Hannah x 





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