I’m not great at golf but I do love the game. Maybe it’s the outdoors. Maybe it’s the relaxed environment. Maybe it’s the calming chatter with friends. Whatever it is, I like to play. But after a few rounds, I tend to get bored. So it was when I was living in Arizona in my youth. In Arizona in the summer, golf establishments would offer killer deals just to get people out on the course.
One time, after a few rounds of cheap golf, my brother and I decided to turn the clubs handle up in our bags, close our eyes and pick one club with which we’d play the entire round. I ended up with my putter.
So, yes. Driving, chipping, hawking out of the rough (which is where I was normally) was all done with my putter. It was the worst round I’ve ever played, even though it was very fun.
Many of us live our lives like that round of golf. We almost randomly pick our career or our work for the money or because our parents were in the same field. We don’t first examine how God made us and what we like to do. Just like a putter was not designed to be a driver, you may not be designed to be spending your hours doing what you’re doing. Maybe that is why 70% of people describe themselves as frustrated or unsettled in their work environment.
So how do you begin getting at how you were made? How do you discover God’s unique wiring for you? There are many personality tests and work-style inventories you could and should take and I put a few references at the bottom of this post, but to begin, you can ask yourself three simple questions:
- What do I love to do? When you’re given a free day, what do you naturally gravitate toward? Would you immediately call friends and go play golf? Would you write a book, work in your garage or create a spreadsheet that details and lists things? What do you love to do?
- At what have others consistently said I’m good? It’s one thing to like to sing but it’s quite another to be good at it. (ala American Idol!). Listen to people around you. You could even be more intentional and ask your family and friends this question: “If I was doing what I’m doing now for my job, what could you see me doing?”
- With what do people need help? Ruth Stafford Peale who was the wife of the Reverend Norman Vincent Peale author of “The Power of Positive Thinking” is credited with the quote ” Find a Need and Fill It.” Using what you love to do and what others say you’re good at, see if there is a way that you can help others. Helping others is the secret sauce to a happy life. (Hey, I just made that up!).
So, are you a putter trying to be a driver? If so, this year may be the year that you begin to transition to fulfilling how you’ve been created. It would honor God, help others and create a deep satisfaction in your own soul.
Website that has helped me sift through my giftedness. Make sure you sign up for Dan’s podcast as well:
Excellent books (among others) that are simple reads and help you walk through a process of discovery: