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Managing Your Dials: Strengths/Stress

When working with my coaching clients, I help them understand themselves better through models and language, specifically exploring where their natural strengths (energy) comes from.

This part of the process helps validate them, and provides insights as to why certain situations/people give them a lot of energy and other situations/people drain their energy.

When we start to further explore areas where their energy is being drained, we come back to these same strengths. What most people don't realize is that we can unintentionally drain our own energy when we over-use our greatest strength(s).

For example, many clients I work with have "Empathizer" as their top strength. These clients have a natural ability to sense the emotional landscape in any situation - a room, a meeting, a relationship - and be naturally motivated to want to help meet identified needs.

When Empathizers are using this strength in a healthy way, they can give freely while maintaining their positive energy. They know what is theirs to do, as well as knowing when to hold back or even ask for help.

When Empathizers become stressed, their stress will tell them that the BEST WAY to "fix" the situation is to do MORE of what they are ALREADY GOOD AT, which is being there for, and helping, others. They don't question if they SHOULD do it; the answer it ALWAYS YES, when under stress.

I call this "dialing your strength up too high under stress." Picture a car thermostat moving up into the "red" territory - the engine can't run effectively when the thermostat is consistently up that high.It's the same for us. When our natural strengths are dialed up too high under stress, we will become drained and we can't function effectively.

A tool I use is this "Strength/Stress" dial visual. The goal is to help clients see how the strengths, when dialed up too high or too low, start to impact our perspectives, behaviors, and emotions. The sooner we can "catch" ourselves, the sooner we can get back into a healthier "zone."

A recent Empathizer client of mine had reached a point where her dial had been on "overdrive" for months, though she couldn't see it before now. Her strength, under stress, kept telling her she HAD to keep all the plates in the air and COULDN'T take time for herself, or she would DEEPLY DISAPPOINT people.

We took time to talk through her energy levels, which were low, and where her stressed thinking pattern was keeping her from her goal of balance.

She eventually started to think of her Empathizer energy as a bank account. She was overdrawn, and needed to invest time for HER, to be able to build up her account balance in order to give healthy, energized withdrawals.

It can be an uncomfortable process to "adjust your dials" when your strength energy isn't in a good space.

As a coach, I am here to join you on that journey and keep you motivated to get beyond your current "pain" to the "gain" of a more balanced, healthy you. Imagine the impact you could have, from a place of health.

It's a workout, though you find the tools and experience you need to know you CAN keep your own dials adjusted.

If you're ready to explore your dials and settings, start with a complimentary consultation.


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