Name Your Core Strengths. If You Can’t, You’re Distracted.

Losing to a goldfish

Fun fact: Did you know that the average attention span of a goldfish is 9 seconds, while the attention span of an average person in 2022 is 8 seconds? That’s what data scientists and media analysts believe is now the average consumer attention span. Yes…it’s that bad.

Distraction presents itself in many forms

We are exposed to more distractions today than ever before. There are auditory distractions, like the drilling going on at your neighbors’ never ending renovation, sensory distractions like that thought that leads into the next thought and then the next or physical distractions like fighting the drag of fatigue in your body.

Good things can be distractions too

Then there are distractions that seem good but are actually destructive in the long run. Think about that long list of micro improvements you and your team can make to make things better… except those improvements take so much time and effort, you expect it to change the world but it barely moves your organization by an inch towards that big goal.

When introspection become unproductive

Of course, traditional corrective feedback and personal introspection has its place. Every organization must ensure that everyone performs at an expected level of competence. Unfortunately, feedback that consistently zooms into flaws can lead otherwise talented individuals to focus on problem areas and completely neglect their unique potential, or some say superpower.

Play to your strengths and do it consistently

So this is a call to focus on your dominant strengths. Gallup actually believes that while failure can be avoided by focusing on weaknesses, excellence is only achieved when we focus on and leverage our strengths. So it is far wiser then, to put all our focus into building up our unique strengths so we reach our highest potential as individuals, teams or organizations.

If you’re not focusing on your core strengths, you are distracted

The approach to dealing with weaknesses should only be at the level of removing barriers. Make sure it does not get in your way. Any measure beyond that is a form of distraction. Gaining awareness of your strengths also offers you a better understanding of how to deal with your weaknesses. For example, it frees me to say, “I’m great at leading but lousy at numbers. So rather than spending large portions of my time brushing up on remedial math, let me bring on a good finance partner.”

Legacy requires ruthless focus

The call to build a legacy for our generation and the next is a tall one. Many of us hope we get the privilege of doing just that. If you’re like me that’s your ultimate goal, then make sure you do not let small issues distract you from your goals. Lasting success requires a constant and ruthless focus on core strengths. So make that your practice everyday.

Sincerely yours,

Stephen Le, Lead Trial Lawyer