I am generally of the opinion that the only good reason for running anywhere is to escape danger. I sincerely hope to die without ever having run a marathon. However, since my working day consists of sitting at my desk and/or in plane seats for hours at a time, I do occasionally go to the gym, where I am regularly reminded of how much weaker I am than your average tank-top-wearing bodybuilder. I’ve always wanted to know at what point the laws of the gym require that you no longer wear sleeves, but I’ve never bothered asking because I know my biceps are well below that threshold. Sometimes I amuse myself by finding the largest guy in the gym and offering to show him around and explain how some of the machines work. That generally gets a laugh, or a grimace – it’s hard to tell sometimes, they have so many muscles I don’t always know what I’m looking at.
But I don’t want to focus this entire article on my physical weakness; I want to talk about my mental weaknesses instead. I am not the most organized person. My desk is always in the middle of a disaster, and my wife is constantly irritated by how messy my side of the closet is. I’m not great with details, and paperwork seriously annoys me. I manage to keep things in files, but it’s not always easy anything in those files if I ever need to find them. And I have only patience for a very small number of social media channels at any given time, which is why I haven’t bothered to open an Instagram account, or Snapchat, or whatever it is the kids are using these days. For a guy who runs a business that deals in communication and connecting with people, that seems like a thing I should be better at, right?
Why am I spending so much time telling you about my failings? Because you probably have some of your own, and it’s good to know what they are, for several reasons:
So You Can Improve
Duh. This is the obvious one, and I’m not going to talk about it. I also don’t think it’s nearly as important as the following two.
So You Can Delegate Those Responsibilities
No one is good at everything, and you shouldn’t try to be. Now of course that doesn’t mean I should spend zero energy working on improving my organizational skills or my attention to detail. But if I am aware that these are my weaknesses and there are people I work with who are better at these things than I am, then it’s far better to delegate as many of those responsibilities as possible than to figure out how to do everything myself. After all, whatever energy I’ll spend improving my weaknesses is energy that’s not being spent playing to my strengths.
So You Can Decide If They’re Actually Weaknesses
I only have patience for two or three social media channels at a time, and there are a million of them. It would make sense to think that I should expand my online footprint. Except that nobody in my line of work does business on Snapchat. I’m also not aware of any other speakers making solid business deals through their Instagram feed. That could mean it’s a wide-open space ripe for my domination, but it could also mean that diving into Instagram would be a giant waste of time. Maybe I’ll give a new social media platform a try, find out that it’s promising, and transition away from one of my existing channels. Or maybe I’ll decide that my current strategy is still the best one. The point is, knowing where I could improve is a necessary first step in order to know how (or if) I should improve.
So enjoy your weaknesses! They’re actually more helpful than you think. Now if you’ll excuse me, there’s a Strongman competition going on a few blocks from here, and I want to shout helpful pointers at the contestants. I’m sure they’ll appreciate my input.