Strengths Finder: Part 5 of 7

25 Jan


My fourth strength is Responsibility.

People who are especially talented in the Responsibility theme take psychological ownership of what they say they will do. They are committed to stable values such as honesty and loyalty.

At the risk of sounding like a broken record, I also very much identified with this theme. What stands out to me is the idea of taking “psychological ownership”. This is certainly something I do – sometimes to the detriment of my mental well-bring. I take ownership of things that are often outside of my control, and then feel horribly when anything goes wrong. This is, of course, as weakness as well as a strength if not kept in control of rational thought.

The other weakness that this leaves me susceptible to is taking on too much. I have had to learn how to say no more as I get older – less I take on more than anyone can reasonably handle and then berate myself when I cannot do everything I’ve promised.

The other item to focus on is how this ties into values. Because I understand the responsibility for every action I take, I highly value ethical behavior in myself and others. I find it difficult to work for companies who espouse values or motivations that I disagree with, and I find it even more difficult to be around people who have behaved unethically. Of course, intent is a huge part of this and I am much more willing to forgive mistakes and misunderstanding. But if I feel someone is intentionally malicious, or careless when care was obviously needed, it is difficult for me to look the other way.

The list of action items yield two worthwhile bits of advice.

First is to remind people in a supervisory position that I can be trusted to finish a project and do not need constant check-ins. I am not sure how realistic this might be, but I do now that the fastest way to de-motivate me is to make me feel as though I am either not trusted or that I am not unique. To constantly check in is to make me feel not trusted. To have one-size-fits-all checklists or performance matrices gives me the impression that each worker is only a cog or trained monkey, simply meant to perform trained actions without bringing any thought or creativity to their work.

However, goal setting, using clearly defined goals, is something that I am good at and can be very useful is motivating me and moving me forward.


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