Those of you who have been reading my blog this week know I’m obsessed with StrengthsFinders at the moment. Yes, it’s true. My Intellection strength makes me want to delve deeply into a fascinating topic until I understand it.
Right now the strength that is fascinating me is Connectedness. I have never really been very spiritual or religious, until recently when I started on a personal journey spelunking into my spiritual side. After my divorce, I felt completely open to exploring anything and everything about myself and my world as I was no longer sure how I fit into either of them. I’ve read mostly Tolle as my guide and subsequently have been contemplating our unseen connections.
I haven’t been completely convinced about these connections. I sense them and I believe in them, but there’s a limited certainty to those beliefs. After all, I’ve been trained as a scientist, and we scientists are skeptical and want evidence. Feeling is just insufficient.
Yet Connectedness is a bona fide strength in StrengthsFinders. What that means is certain people are inherently talented in this theme, and can use this strength to have more fun, feel more engaged and be more effective, productive and creative at what they do in both their personal and professional lives. Connectedness people understand the unseen threads between people, events, and all things, and believe that everything happens for a reason. Or perhaps more accurately, as Tolle says, everything that has happened was supposed to happen because it did happen. Make sense?
I guess one could dive deeply into the validity of the StrengthsFinders assessment: are these real strengths? How reproducible and reliable is the assessment? The strengths were identified after years of research and interviewing people as to what qualities they felt helped them to be successful. And guess what. Connectedness came out as one of the 34 strength themes since a significant percentage of people felt that this theme had tangible benefits to their success and well-being.
So, to improve the effectiveness and utility of the Connectedness strength means to pay attention to these insights and gut feelings, to be aware of coincidences, and respect those connections. Improving also means learning, whether it’s from books or videos by thought leaders, but also by following the guidance and wisdom of those with more developed strengths in the area.
I don’t really have a conclusion or any insight to offer here. I’m really the rookie in the house. Rather I’m just reflecting on something that I’ve completely taken for granted most of my life and am starting to be more open to what else is out there – not only from a curiosity perspective, but also from a what-a-great-and-useful-skill perspective. So Connectedness people: I seek to learn from you. I can only begin to imagine and would love to hear from you on this topic….