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We don’t pick the circumstances of our life. We do not pick the time of our birth or the family we are born into. We do not pick our talents or strengths or even our disadvantages. We do not pick the color of our skin or our nationality. We arrive “as is” and must face whatever life throws our way.
We can be sure of one thing. Adversity will come whether we are ready or not. We can pick our attitude but not our circumstances. As with Daniel, obstacles will come and how we are prepared for tomorrow’s trouble will determine how we survive.Read more
Discipline: People exceptionally talented in the Discipline theme enjoy routing and structure. Their world is best described by the order they create.
Daniel was an Israeli captive that had been carted off to Babylon- probably somewhere in his middle school years. Imagine, a tween, and being taken from the family you love. But even as a young boy, he had a strong faith that sustained him as he grew in a society that was not conducive to God-fearing men and women.
When the king called for Daniel to be on the king's diet plan, Daniel refused. He kept to a strict and disciplined diet and would not eat the king's food. This proved to be a very wise choice, as Daniel and his three friends were much stronger and healthier because of it.
Daniel was a disciplined learner and had incredible amounts of wisdom and skill in all maths and sciences.
He was smart, young, handsome, had a good attitude, was highly regarded by the king ...and the high officials were jealous! They looked for grounds for complaint against Daniel, but found none. The only thing they found was that he had a strict routine in prayer and was focused on obeying the laws of God.
(You're in pretty good shape if that's all they have against you!)
The high officials solution? They created a law that said you could only worship King Darius...or be cast into the den of lions. Of course, that did not stop Daniel. He went straight to his house, where he had the windows open toward Jerusalem, and prayed three times a day "as he had done previously."
He was an example of what disciplined prayer should be. He persevered in spite of opposition, difficulty or inconvenience. He stuck to his routine, even when no one was watching.
How does your Discipline play out in your life? Are you routined even when those around you are not? How could a disciplined prayer life strengthen your spirit? What would happen if you found a routined time to pray each day, like Daniel?
I am adding the final finishing touches on my new book, "Draw On Your Strengths"! I can't believe this is finally happening! I had another Strengths coach tell me that I must have a lot of Discipline to have this completed. I had to laugh. Discipline pretty close to the bottom of my pile. I told him that what he is most likely seeing is a fierce combination of Achiever and Focus.
The idea of this book actually started off with my Learner. Learner and Focus are themes that are not typically seen that often together. The reason is that Learner pulls you in 100 different directions, wanting to learn about all kinds of subjects. It's the reason I drew a "squirrel" on the wall of my Learner picture. If you've ever seen the Disney movie, "Up!" you may remember Doug the dog. As he is in the middle of conversations, he notices a squirrel out of the corner of his eye and says, "Squirrel!" (Click here to see a scene.) That's a little what my Learner looks like. As I am learning one thing, I may come upon something else that is exciting to learn...and will end up on a rabbit trail of all kinds of wonderful things to learn.
But Focus tempers my Learner in this way. Every year I find a new thing that I really want to learn, and I spend a year learning it. I read everything I can about it, practice it, watch videos, talk to people... just about anything I can think of to learn more.
A few years ago I wanted to learn about sketching. I was doing some conferences in New Zealand and had the opportunity to visit one of the schools that I work with in Rock Our World. The students there knew I was coming and had a presentation planned when I arrived. They wanted to put in a proposal for the next season of what we would learn with our global team. They wanted to do an art project. That got me thinking that I had not really done much art in the past 10 years. Art used to be a part of my every day life, and it somehow got shuffled to the side. I agreed - who can say "No" to a group of adorable kids from Governor's Bay, New Zealand?!
So began my journey in Sketchnoting. I chose that medium because, frankly, I knew nothing about it- and I would get the opportunity to learn something new! I had gotten in trouble in school plenty of times for doodling on my pages, and wanted to explore the idea of doodling in education. I can still look back at my college papers (the ones I saved) and remember facts about the classes- simply based on the doodles I was drawing. So, it was time to give it a try and see if it could still work for me now.
That's when Achiever and Focus took over. I decided I would learn Sketchnoting during the year. And to practice, I would use our sermons each week as a testing ground. I knew that I would hear a different message each week to practice my craft. By the end of the year, I changed some things. Traditional Sketchnoting has containers and arrows. My style started there and eventually morphed into one image that would be my focus piece...with arrows and text supporting that main image. At the end of the year, I published my first devotional book with my father on iTunes called: "Sketching the Sermon". It included the audio tracks from the messages as well as my sketches.
After becoming a coach, I started sketching little pieces of each theme to use in my class at Fresno Pacific University called, "Teach With Your Strengths". It became a hit...and well, you know the rest! Once my Learner was satisfied, my Achiever wanted to see a weekly check off list, and my Focus drove me to make it happen.
For the past year, I have been trying to upload a sketch a week on "Theme Thursday". These sketches eventually became part of my new book, "Draw With Your Strengths."
Here's where you come in:
What themes do you have, that when put together, look like another theme. My Focus and Achiever were mistaken for Discipline. And that's OK! It's kind of cool to know that I can use the talents that I've been given to make up for a lesser talent.
We all have the ability to mask some of our lesser talents with our Strengths. Look at your own life. How do you compensate for your lesser talents?
Rock Your Strengths
(Here's a sample of one of my #Sermonnotes from this year.)
People that are especially talented in Discipline enjoy routine and structure. I had a hard time trying to decide how to correctly draw out this theme. So, I did what I do best and asked my network! My StrengthsFinder coaching friends worked this one out with me - so thank you, team! When I originally started drawing this theme, I was going for a "sports" theme, looking at Discipline through the eyes of an athlete... working diligently at the tiniest movements to perfect it. I studied divers, golfers and ballerinas. Their careful routines and precision timing of their muscle movements intrigued me. But then I thought of Discipline as a need for order and strategic planning. It made me think of the details that an architect would put into their work. So I sketched out an architect's planning table. But the thing that made me change my mind to this drawing was timelines and deadlines. Almost every person I spoke to with Discipline in their Top 3 told me that they were ruled by their plan book. They structured their lives by disciplining themselves to stick to predictable schedules and calendars. Distractions and unplanned events were things that they did not enjoy.
There are some personal storied hidden in this calendar. If you knew me well, you'd be able to see them very quickly. Can you guess what they might be?! Hmmm....