I was recently in a conversation with a client who asked me of all her 34 talents that are identified in the CliftonStrengths Assessment, which one she should focus on first. This is a great question that I’m sure a lot of people have so I thought I’d answer it in this blog post.
Generally, when you think of someone having a talent, this may be one or two things at most. The CliftonStrengths Assessment presents you with 34 talents which can make tough to know which ones to focus on first. To answer this question though, I like to give an analogy that has something to do with your dominant hand.
Giving Yourself a Hand to Prioritize Your Top Talents
Now, you can imagine this or do it physically (because it helps for effect), take your dominant hand, raise it, and then pop your five fingers open. Those are your top five talents. When you think about them in terms of handedness, the fingers on your dominant hand you use every moment of every day for a variety of things.
They’re so incredibly helpful to you. It’s just very natural for you. They serve a great function in your life and probably in terms of handedness – the most useful in your life when it comes to getting things done.
Now, take your non-dominant hand, your second hand, and hold it up and pop those fingers out. Those are your next five talents, your 6 through 10. They’re also very strong in you. However, they’re not quite as useful to you (probably unless you’re just completely ambidextrous) as your dominant fingers are on your dominant hand.
But if you bring those two together, these are your two hands and the 10 fingers that you have to work with at any given moment in any given day. Together they combine to create the you and the capability of you.
Start With Your Top 5
So to answer my client’s question plainly and for anyone else who may be trying to prioritize your top talents, I suggested that you start with her dominant hand and your top five talents.
Take a look at those and get to know them very, very well. Then when you’re ready, move on to the next five to consider how those can be useful as well because that hand comes in handy too. Together your top 10 talents combine to make about 95% of who you are. You have other things in your capability as well that are other talents that may come up every so often. The ones to focus on first and with the most intention are your top 5 and then your next 5. I hope that helps you realize that you don’t have to get a full understanding of every single talent you possess at once.
Prioritize Your Top Talents By Starting With the Strongest
At the end of the day, you can even focus on talents one-by-one if you have to. These themes are already apart of your DNA and they really matter. You will have the opportunity to challenge and develop your strengths through work, chores, relationships with others, and other responsibilities over time.
Start with your top 5, but be sure to give each talent its own analysis and see how you can utilize it more effectively in your everyday life. If you need help with this, I do offer coaching to help you utilize each of your talents in a way that allows you to live, work, and interact more authentically.
To learn more about your strong hand or your top 5, head here to learn for FREE how they work together to create your own profile. It’s great fun and truly enlightening. And again, FREE! And you can always contact me if you have any questions or would like to discuss your top talents in more detail. Just shoot me a note at firstname.lastname@example.org