If I had to give you my best advice to help you build a fulfilling business it would be this:
“Get to know yourself …and choose the business path that fits who you really are.”
But, when I say “the business path that fits who you really are”, I’m not suggesting you a focus on using your current skills, because…
It’s not your skills what counts when you want to create a fulfilling path.
Instead, you need to search for something else…
The difference between skills, talents and strengths.
I’ve talked about strengths before , but today I’ll go a bit deeper while sharing more about my own career change journey.
1) Your Skills
A skill is something you learn how to do.
With the right information, training and practice, you can acquire almost any skill. To illustrate this, let me share a bit about my own career journey.
You might not know it but I’m a former Architect.
Back then when I was at the University, I was taught, among many other things, how to draw the blueprint of a house, how to estimate the cost of a building or how to make sure everybody was safe during the construction process.
Now those are valuable skills, but do any of them bring me any sense of meaning in my business?
Not to me.
And in a minute you’ll find why.
Skills are like tools
You can learn to cook, you can learn to write, you can learn to use photoshop, play the piano or whatever you want, and do it at a pretty decent level.
But there is a problem with tools:
First, you may enjoy using those skills or you may not.
And second, having a skill doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll be good at it. (knowing how to prepare a meal, for example, doesn’t turn you into a chef. )
So there must be something else.
We all know people who went to the same school we did, got the same amount of training and became really great at that. What do they have that we don’t?
The answer is they have a natural talent for that.
2) Your Talents
A natural talent is an inborn capacity for something.
When you have a talent for something, doing that is easy for you.
With less training you get better results than most people, and when you put effort and time into developing that capacity you truly shine in that activity.
Can you see why it’s key to develop skills in alignment with your natural talents?
As a baby, I started talking at a very early age. I remember I’ve always loved playing with words and sounds. And now, even though english is not my main language, I have a strong confidence in my ability to communicate my ideas to anyone, either by writing or speaking.
I can track that ability back in time, and that’s a clear sign of a natural talent.
And by the way, this is an important business and career happiness tip:
Avoid as much as possible any business that forces you to spend long periods of time using skills that don’t match your natural talents.
Ok, so back to your talents
They are assets that can help you shine. But identifying your talents and developing them is not enough. Because, as surprising as that may seem, neuroscience has proven that you can have a talent for something you don’t enjoy doing!
That’s why you need to focus on…
3) Your Strengths
A strength is something you not only love doing and you are great at, it also leaves you feeling energized. According to Marcus Buckingham, a researcher and author of Now Discover Your strengths, says: “Strengths are those activitites that strengthen you”
You can say that a strength is a natural talent you really enjoy using.
When you play to your strengths, you do things better than other people (which is an advantage in any career or business) and you will feel great doing those things, too.
For a long time, I made all my career choices based on the skills I had acquired at University, while ignoring my strengths. No wonder those careers made me so unhappy.
Because of that, my career path as an Architect was doomed from the very beginning, without me even knowing it.
I learned the hard way that choosing a career path because it matches your current skills is the surest way to career burnout and frustration.
Now as Purpose-based Business coach I teach, I write, I speak and share my knowledge in any way I can. I’m playing to my strengths…and I absolutely love it!
How much suffering could I have avoided if only I had know myself deeply enough? Knowing yourself is key to your career happiness and to building a business you love.
If you need some help figuring out your strengths, I encourge you to get my Career Clarity Cards Deck. I designed these set of cards with 12 key questions to help you gain clarity about who you are and what it is you’d love to do.
I invite you to get your FREE access to the Career Clarity Cards by visiting: