August 1, 2011

Leveraging Our Gifts

“It is not recognizing our gifts, but how we use them, that is the true measure of our gratitude.”

Everyone has been blessed with a unique set of gifts and talents.  While many of us may not be aware of or confident in these gifts, believe me they exist.   Our unique skills and abilities often manifest themselves in different ways and at different times in our lives.  Sometimes we simply discover them because we followed a particular passion or purpose that instantly inspired us and we found we were successful at it.  For others still struggling to find meaning in their lives, it may take some exploration and thought before they realize their passion and purpose as it relates these gifts.  Regardless, we have all been blessed with a unique set of skills and abilities that enables us to engage in certain activities in a very special and powerful manner.  And, it puts each of us in a position to leverage these unique abilities to make a difference in both our lives and in the lives of others.

For those who have not discovered or embraced their uniqueness often do so because they are not yet aware of their energy and power.  Something that seems incredibly difficult to others comes easy to us, though we don’t see it as all that significant.  While others stand in awe of our ability to organize, articulate, compete, lead, or strategize, we just shrug our shoulders wondering what the big deal is.  We devalue the little things we accomplish with ease that others spend a lifetime trying to simply do.  We don’t recognize our special talents because we underestimate or diminish the real uniqueness and power of it all.

Or, we may not recognize the true source of the energy that we get when we engage in our unique talents.  This occurs mainly because we are fixated on accomplishing something else.  While our skills provide a means to the end; it is not the brass ring we are chasing.  When we do something that provides us success, we can be more fixated on the process of accomplishment and not contribution our skills and our passion played in that success.  Hence, we confuse the accomplishment as energizing, not the excitement of using our skills and abilities to its fullest that enabled us to get there.  Our skills and abilities get lost or misplaced when we are not fully aware of what energizes us or why.

As you examine your life’s experiences, go back through those experiences and discover when you were happiest and most engaged – what were you doing, what were you feeling and thinking, and what made those experiences the most satisfying.  Connect to those activities and accomplishments that brought you the most joy and satisfaction.  When you think about who you were in those situations and how you were able to think and feel this way, you will become more connected to those unique skills, abilities and talents that make you who you really are.

Armed with this information and insight you are now more capable of embracing the passion that is you.  You can bring gratitude and power to your gifts and begin to discover opportunities to use them in a way that will inspire, guide, and help others; and, along the way bring you to a new level of consciousness and fulfillment in your journey.  You are unique and special.  You have been wired with a unique and wonderful set of skills that others are looking for.  Bring them into play so we can all benefit from and celebrate in them.

About Dave Cooke

Dave Cooke is a dad on a mission. His mission is to help parents get control of their lives over the powerful, destructive influences of a child's addiction. As the father of a son in a ten year heroin battle, Dave knows all to well the challenges parents and families face. He also knows there is a way to find peace in the chaos. It is his mission to help parents discover their path to a healthier, balanced life even if a child's active addiction is still part of their daily journey.