How do you figure out what you were meant to do? How do you know what you're really good at? What can you do that makes you shine?

One obstacle most of us have is that we really don't know. People are quick to point out our weaknesses and most of us in childhood and onward were pushed toward shoring up our weaknesses rather than identifying our strengths and working on them. The goal has been "well-rounded," not "sharp."

Alex is a published novelist. He was 21 before someone whose opinion he trusted pointed out to him that he could write. He hadn't a clue. He had started a rudimentary journal when he was 8, and a neighborhood newsletter when he was 10. He got As in English, but he also did in Math and Social Studies. He thought writing was something everyone could do and no big deal.

This happens all too often with talents. Talents are innate; something so easy for you to do you can't remember when you couldn't do it; something you 'can't help doing' so you don't “feel it” when you do it, and you also think everyone can, they just aren't . Talents are also things that are fun for you to do, almost in the sense of flow - you'd do them even if you weren't getting paid, and in fact they are the hobbies and avocations of many of us.

Another clue – if you cease doing it for a while and start up again, you're immediately back up to speed. Knowledge and skills can be acquired, but talents are innate.

Why is this important? In their book, "Now, Discover Your Strengths," ( ) Buckingham and Clifton propose the theory that if you work in your strength areas, you can perform consistently and effortlessly at a near perfect level and find great satisfaction without a whole lot of stress.

Sounds like heaven on earth, doesn't it? Well, there are ways to get there.

Next time we’ll talk about how to get there!

Author's Bio: 

©Susan Dunn, THE EQ Coach, Here to assist, inspire, support and transform your experience of yourself, your life, your relationships, your career and your world through the magic of emotional intelligence competencies (EQ). We've done it again - check out the first Emotional Intelligence Blog on the Internt: . for FREE ezine.