If you’ve ever wondered about your “calling,” or how you can serve other people, you might assume that your strengths are the area to focus in. If you are good at x and always have been, x is what you can offer to the world – like an expert skier who becomes a ski instructor. It’s pretty straight forward.

But what about our weaknesses?

When you really think about it, an expert skier isn’t a good ski instructor because he is awesome, but because he once sucked.

The paradox is: the more we’ve gone without something, the more deeply we understand the essence of that thing. When you deeply know the opposite of something, you can understand a lot about it. For example, someone who lives in poverty may learn a lot more about money while trying to obtain it and learning to live without it than a rich person, who has simply always had it and has never thought about it. Thus the thing that you can provide to the world is often your own perceived weakness. Who would be a better money coach – the rich person or the poor? It varies of course, but the obvious answer will not always be the correct one.

Many of the greatest coaches and teachers today are people who’ve grappled with those same issues they now help others with. So don’t beat yourself up for sucking at things – if you work your way through it, it may actually come in handy some day.

Now I’m gonna go practice math….probably not.