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10 Ways To Develop Your Strengths At Work

August 12, 2015 by ·

????????????????????????????????????????????????????????Next week more than one thousand people around the world will see if they can put their strengths to work more intentionally.  Want to know what they’ll be trying?

As part of the first free global Strengths Challenge, we’ve invited leaders, employees, contractors and entrepreneurs to create an eleven-minute daily strengths habit and monitor how it impacts their wellbeing and performance.  Why eleven minutes?

Well after teaching thousands of people around the world to discover and develop their strengths, there was one hurdle I found most people faced when putting it into practice.  They were always too busy to start.

Keen to shrink down the time and effort it would take people put their strengths to work, I started playing with ten-minute habits.  After all, most of us can find ten minutes in our day somewhere!

But after looking into more of the neuroscience on how our habits actually work, I started recommending people spend eleven-minutes a day developing their strengths.  You see it appears our habits run on a neurological loop that includes a cue that triggers off the desired behavior, a routine that we practice, and a reward that creates a craving to repeat the habit next time the cue goes off.

As part of the Strengths Challenge people have been identifying their character strengths, picking one strength to create a habit around and then finding a cue, a routine and a reward that they will practice from August 17th – 21st, 2105.  Here are ten habits people have submitted that you might want to try:

  • Curiosity Habit: When I turn on my computer (cue), then I’ll use my strength of curiosity to spend ten minutes reading and learning something new (routine), before sharing this idea with a colleague (reward).
  • Creativity Habit: When I arrive at work (cue), then I’ll spend ten minutes using my strength of creativity to mind-map new ways we can serve our customers (routine), before getting my morning coffee (reward).
  • Kindness Habit: When I go to get my lunch (cue), then I will spend ten minutes using my strength of kindness to check in with a colleague on what’s working well for them (routine), before getting something to eat (reward).
  • Gratitude Habit: On my way home from work (cue), then I’ll spend ten minutes using my strength of gratitude to find one way I had a positive impact on someone today (routine), before heading in my front door (reward).
  • Honesty Habit: When I pack to go home (cue), then I’ll use my strength of honesty to acknowledge failures, fair criticisms and areas for ongoing learning and improvement and make a note of these for tomorrow (routine), before going home (reward).
  • Bravery Habit: When it’s time for my morning break (cue), then I will spend 10 minutes speaking up about an issue or an idea that is important to me with a colleague (routine) before heading outside for short walk (reward).
  • Love Habit: When I open my laptop (cue), then I’ll spend ten minutes thinking about how my work today can help someone (routine), before reading a gratitude note from one for our customers (reward).
  • Appreciation of Beauty & Excellence Habit: When I get ready to have lunch (cue), then I’ll spend ten minutes walking outside and post a picture on Instagram of something that inspires me (routine), before having my lunch (reward).
  • Leadership Habit: When I travel into work (cue), then I will spend 10 minutes thinking about a leader I’ve admired (routine), before noting down ways to channel their approach in my work (reward).
  • Perspective Habit: When I get to work (cue), then I will spend 10 minutes looking for a quote on perspective that inspires me (routine), then spend 30 seconds meditating on it (reward).

Keen to use your strengths more intentionally or help other put their strengths to work?  Join the free Strengths Challenge at www.strengthschallenge.com and discover a whole database and toolkit of free resources around the small habits you can create to make developing your character strengths easier.

-Michelle McQuaid

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