As a Clifton Strengths Coach, I’ve always loved Gallup’s Clifton Strengths Assessment. But it wasn’t until I realized my on-going back pain was due to stress that I discovered the true magic and simplicity of the tool.

Discovering and using my natural strengths dramatically reduced my stress levels and was a pivotal part of my recovery.

Here are the 6 reasons why finding the magical operating manual to myself was a game changer.

6 reasons to help avoid stress
6 reasons to help avoid stress

Reason 1 – We know our stress triggers

It’s hard to believe but what is stressful to one person can be energizing to someone else. This is because we are all different.

Once we discover our greatest strengths, we can also identify our stress triggers. The way we think, feel and behave are all linked to our unique strengths. Knowing this information, we would be able to predict how we respond in a variety of different circumstances ahead of time. This gives us the chance to learn strategies to cope and even thrive in stressful situations.

And once we understand our stress triggers, we are already less triggered!

Reason 2 – We move into ‘flow’

The assessment pulls out our natural talents/strengths whether or not at the time of taking the assessment you are using them. We could be miserable, stressed out or even in pain but the results are still surprisingly accurate.

Once we discover what makes us tick (our strengths), we can start to intentionally use our strengths more. The more we use our strengths the more we move into the state of flow. Flow is a state where time flies and as such we are distracted from the stress or pain.

Reason 3 – We can have better relationships

When we understand our strengths, we then specifically know why we are different from others and why certain people drive us crazy. Once we have this knowledge, we are far less triggered by other individuals and we also have the strengths to respond rather than react.

Reason 4 – We can stop trying to be someone we are not

Stress can be caused because we don’t feel that we are good enough. We are putting so much effort into trying to be better, different or more like someone we look up to.

It sounds simplistic but when we know and appreciate our strengths, we can stop trying to be someone we are not and start living from a place of authenticity. When we are 100% ourselves it takes a lot less effort than pretending to be someone we are not.

Reason 5 – We can stop overthinking

For some stress comes from overthinking. We can spend hours in our heads going over situations that have happened and beating ourselves up about what we said or did. Or we spend hours overthinking before even taking action. And sometimes it causes us to take no action at all.

Knowing our strengths helps us to pinpoint exactly why we think the way we think. Having this knowledge puts us back in the driving seat so we can choose if and how to change these thought patterns to something that would serve us better.

Reason 6 – We can be whole again

When we are stressed, overwhelmed or in physical pain, we tend to stop doing things because of time pressure. But if the activity that was cut was using one or more of our strengths, we could find ourselves getting even more stressed.

Why? Because the more we use our strengths the stronger we become. Using our strengths lights us up, makes time fly and makes us feel alive.

When we know what these strengths are, we can ensure that we are using every single one every day to give us the best chance of keeping our emotions and energy above water.

In summary

When we know and use our strengths, we feel stronger. With or without stress, overwhelm or physical pain this is a way better way to live.

Knowing my strengths changed my life. Stress became something I could easily predict, and my strengths gave me the practical tool to stay calm and enjoy my life again.

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