The description of positive traits provided by my family and friends is not surprising. I am very much aware of my strengths and the ‘best self’. The portrait they describe is well aligned with my own self-image. I find it interesting to see how much people notice about me and remember. I personally don’t see much of interest in what I do – I just do it. It comes naturally. It seems like the right thing to do. I assume that I’m pretty much the same as everyone around me. However, the remarks offered suggest that people don’t see me as equivalent to everyone else; it’s something that I have encountered in the past, and it still shocks me. I feel that I can be quite critical of people’s abilities and output: I expect people to be able to perform at my level. I suppose this trait is an extension of my belief that I’m pretty much the same as everyone else. If I can do it, why can’t they? The most useful part of this analysis was getting confirmation of what I consider to be my positive strengths. It’s one thing to think I possess a strength, but I always worry I could be deluding myself. If nothing more, this “critical self assessment” exercise allowed me to understand which areas I don’t need to focus on. I need to understand that it’s not realistic to expect everyone to operate at the same level, and recognize people for the unique and valuable contribution they make, even if it’s not the contribution I would make. Though my sense of humor was highlighted by respondents as an asset, responses indicated another set of common trait: overly serious. All of the comments talked about how I got things done, or got other people to get things done. Not a lot of fun there. Though it’s important to be productive, to do things right, to go out and get things done, I need to relax a little and not take things so seriously. No one lies on their deathbed wishing they’d spent more time at the office. This is my life, and it’s ending one second at a time – so,...
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