Wednesday, October 2, 2013

I Know My Strengths

Last night I took the online test for Tom Rath's StrengthsFinder 2.0 and the results I got were exactly what I had expected.

I like to think that I know who I am pretty well. I've know who I am for years actually; probably since seventh or eighth grade.

My top five strengths were:

1. Woo
2. Maximizer
3. Adaptability
4. Positivity
5. Communication

In the book, Rath describes Woo as follows:

"Woo stands for winning others over. You enjoy the challenge of meeting new people and getting them to like you. Strangers are rarely intimidating to you. On the contrary, strangers can be energizing. You are drawn to them. You want to learn their names, ask them questions, and find some area of common interest so that you can strike up a conversation and build rapport. Some people shy away from starting up conversations because they worry about running out of things to say. You don't. Not only are you rarely at a loss for words; you actually enjoy initiating with strangers because you derive satisfaction from breaking the ice and making a connection. Once that connection is made, you are quite happy to wrap it up and move on. There are new people to meet, new rooms to work, new crowds to mingle in. In your world there are no strangers, only friends you haven't met yet--lots of them" (Rath 169).

How I look/feel when people like me.
This describes me perfectly. Like spot on. As I said before, I knew who I was since I was about thirteen years old. I knew that I need to be around people and I need people to like me. If I went to college, got a degree, and spent the rest of my life trapped in a cubicle typing numbers into an excel spreadsheet for my stuck-up boss who hates me, I would literally die.

That's why I promised myself right then and there that I would get a job where I can talk and interact with people every single day. Young people, old people, normal people, unique people. Interacting with any person makes me happy. I need to be social to enjoy my life.

Elvis Duran and the Z100 Morning Show in the studio.
That being said, I'm studying Television and Radio. I want to communicate with EVERYONE. I started my shift at 92 WICB last night (well I guess it was the morning) and even though not many people are calling the studio between 2:00 and 4:00 a.m., I have to start somewhere, right? I hope to have my own talk show one day, similar to the Elvis Duran and the Morning Show, which is a show I grew up listening to every single morning in the car ride to school.

I need to constantly be interacting with different people, yet I struggled with this my senior year of high school. Well, I didn't struggle, but many people around me struggled to recognize this fact of my life. People in my town are very, very clique-y. If you don't have a defined, exclusive group of friends, people look down upon you. And I didn't like that. I had a group of best friends in the beginning of the year, but as I became more and more involved in extracurricular activities, (volleyball, track, yearbook, volunteering) I started to grow apart from those friends. Sure, I always had a few best friends, but I was no longer part of that specific group. I didn't mind, because I liked knowing a ton of different people. Being able to walk through the halls of my high school and know 80% of the people I saw was comforting. Not being invited to hang out with my old group of friends however, was not. I don't think they realized that I had to be involved in many different things. It was the only way I could get to know everyone at the same time. The athletes, the artists, the nerds, the philanthropists. I couldn't be a part of one group and get to know all these different types of people. In my hometown, that was impossible.

Wow these silhouettes are soooo social. 

When people around here say "Ugh I can't wait to go home!" I just sit there and say, "What? Why would you want to go home?" The people at IC are so much more open to each other than in my town. Maybe it's because we have to be, since we're all new to school and everything. But hopefully it's because people are ready to be open-minded and connect with each other as much as they possibly can. (Or that could just be my positivity kicking in...)

Dustin and me. (Buddies for life yo).
Last year, I did what I had to do to make myself happy, even though I grew apart from some friends along the way. I have no regrets. Don't worry, I still always had a few best friends; people I'll always be friends with, no matter what. The reason my friend Dustin and I are so close is because we both would rather be friends with everyone than just a few people. Also, we're both going into communications, so we know just how important it is to make connections with as many people as possible--with the friends I haven't met yet.

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