The below article is a guest post by Rekha Pant from Canva, a graphics design platform. I’m not affiliated with them but have been a fan since 2014, and used them many times to build images for my clients and my own content.
Over to Rekha.
One of the things that we can do to reach our maximum potential is to identify how we are unique.
What makes us stand out from a crowd? What makes us special? These questions sound narcissistic, but the intention behind them has nothing to do with vanity. In fact, knowing how you are different can lead to self-love, which is the best gift that you can give yourself.
Knowing your unique skills will help determine which of life’s many paths is best for you. It will lead you to things you’re passionate about and live the life you deserve to live. It’s kind of a light bulb moment. Something clicks, and before you know it, you’ve made your way out of the dark cave you got tired of hiding in.
You’re probably wondering how to identify what makes you unique. That’s understandable. Most of us don’t know where to start because that’s a question we don’t usually ask ourselves. Well, I’m here to give you tips on how to identify what your unique skills are.
Here are five simple steps you can take:
1. Converse with Your Inner Child
Not many people are open to the idea of talking to the child in them. So getting used to doing this is okay.
The point I want to make here is, if you engage in conversations with your inner child, you’ll get a clear picture of how you are different from your peers. It’s an insight that’s more valuable than online quizzes could ever give you.
2. Reflect on Your Past
Have you received thank you notes from your friends? Did your boss compliment you for something? What attributes did your friends and colleagues praise you for?
Jot them down on your journal and reflect on them. These attributes are a part of your strengths. They’re among the many things that make you special.
Sometimes, our minds are cluttered with a multitude of thoughts that’s why we don’t see them. Luckily, we have interactions with family, friends, and colleagues to look back on to help us see what it is in us that makes us unique.
3. Ask People for Feedback
If you’re not comfortable answering the question by yourself, you can ask the people closest to you to do it for you. You’ll be surprised at how eye-opening this conversation can be.
Here’s a fine print though: take everything with a grain of salt. What do I mean by this? Sometimes, our closest friends have the tendency to impose things on us. Take time to reflect on their feedback and take note of statements that resonate with you.
4. If You Feel the Flow, You’re Good to Go
Pay close attention to moments where you feel a certain lightness about you. Which activities fill your heart to the brim? Is it blogging? Web design? Why do you feel happy while doing these things? What is it about them that gets you in the groove?
Let’s think of an example like – you don’t know what your real interests are and you came across a friend who is learning some new designs. You just got influenced or motivated and started learning with design tools. This means you instantly developed an interest. Knowing what’s causing this natural high will help you discover your strengths, and eventually, unleash your full potential.
5. Give Yourself Ample Time
Getting a full grasp of what makes you special can’t happen overnight. It’s a process that takes time. It can take longer if you’ve lived most of your life doing things you were programmed to do instead of the ones that make your heart flutter.
So be kind and patient with yourself. Give yourself space each day to meditate on the question and see what unfolds for you. Each time a thought or a realization comes up, write it down on your journal. As you go about your day, take note of which activities feel like work for you and which ones put a smile on your face.
The gifts and talents that make us unique are tied to our life’s destiny. By taking the time to get to know what these are, we allow ourselves to be a step closer to the people we were destined to be. Now, that is pure bliss.