It’s Easy to Be Honest When You’re Five! (2/24/23)

I made a new friend at a parade over Mardi Gras weekend. She told me her name and that she was 5 years old. Totally mesmerized and delighted by the groups of girls dancing and twirling their batons to (very loud) music from the marching bands, she announced, “I’m going to dance in a parade just like this next year.” I answered, “Yes, it looks like such fun. Do you already take dance lessons or baton lessons?”

“Oh, no, I don’t need to take lessons. I’m already a very good dancer. And I don’t know how to twirl a baton yet, but I’m so smart that I can learn really fast.”

She wasn’t bragging or boasting…. just stating the honest facts as she knew them. When you’re five, you can be totally honest about how good you are at everything. How different from the women in my audiences who have a hard time acknowledging their strengths. Why are they uncomfortable? “My mother always told me that people won’t like me if I brag about myself too much. So I’m not comfortable talking about the things I’m good at.”

What were these women comfortable talking about? It was much easier for them to list things they can’t do, wish they could do, are afraid to do, don’t know how to do, and the things they would like to do over.

While no one likes a show-off, acknowledging your strengths has nothing to do with bragging and boasting. It involves taking a realistic look at your God-given gifts and talents, acknowledging them, and making the decision to use them to the best of your ability.

We’ll talk more about your strengths next time, but for now I encourage you (challenge you?) to make a list of your strengths. You don’t have to share it with anyone. It’s just for you. You might be surprised at what you learn… even if I may not spot you dancing and twirling your baton in a Mardi Gras parade next year!


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