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Strengths, Weaknesses, and Failing.

Do you know what your strengths and weaknesses are? Are you afraid of failing? I would expect many different answers to those questions depending on who you are. Most of us even at an early age begin to know what we are good at and what we are not good at. My two older boys both play hockey but have very different skill sets. Dan, my oldest son, is smaller and quicker than Jacob who is lanky and tall. Dan learned very early to use his speed and quickness to gain an advantage. Jacob is beginning to learn just how to use his size and bulk on the ice. The point is they both have strengths and weaknesses in the same sport resulting in very different styles of play. But on a team those roles can combine to produce successes on the ice.
If you have a career I am sure you have constantly analyzed your strengths and weaknesses in your job. I went to many seminars that addressed this area. Some told me to work hard on my weaknesses to make them strength. Others told me to take my strengths and make them even stronger. Both were valid, but I probably fell into the group that knew what I did well and made it an even bigger advantage.
We also have strengths and weaknesses as individuals in our relationships. Whether it be your marriage, your friendships, or your families; we all bring many wonderful qualities to those relationships. At the same time I’m sure there are also many things that bug the heck out of these people too. The point here is nobody is perfect. We must be able to accept the weaknesses in our relationships as well as all the wonderful qualities people bring to our lives. Unfortunately, many cannot overcome some of these faults. We spend time trying to change people as opposed to embracing who they are or who they become.
From an early age there seems to be pressure to be the best and win at all we do. However, the most successful people not only failed repeatedly, it was through failure that they catapulted to the greatest successes in life. See if you can guess who these people were:
  1. This person did not speak until age 4 and did not read until age 7. He was said to be mentally slow and adrift in foolish ideas. He went on to win the 1921 Nobel Prize in physics.
  2. He was cut several times from his high school basketball teams.
  3. 27 publishers rejected his first book.
  4. He gave up a medical career and became the father of modern biology.
  5. His teacher called him “hopeless” as a composer and handled the violin awkwardly. While completely deaf he wrote his five greatest compositions.
  6. His idea was rejected by a city and was bankrupt several times.
So never be afraid to fail, in fact, embrace your failures and learn from them. If you haven’t failed you haven’t pushed yourself enough. When you least expect it, your biggest failures will provide you with your greatest victories. In the end, embrace your strengths, weaknesses, and failures. These will provide you with your greatest joys, and they will make you the successful person God created you to become. By the way the answers to the questions above are Albert Einstein, Michael Jordan, Dr. Seuss, Charles Darwin, Ludwig van Beethoven, and Walt Disney. Pretty amazing and successful people who failed more than they succeeded. In fact, Michael Jordan said himself “I’ve failed over and over and over again in life and that is why I succeed.”

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