Hidden Talents Might Be Too Well Hidden

I was sitting in a circle of women and we each had a question to answer.  My question, typed on a strip of paper was, “Name one thing you do well.”  We were at a get-to-know-you Relief Society Meeting and the object was to answer the question (not mentioned but kind of implied to answer truthfully).  I happened to be the second to last person in the circle so I had plenty of time to think.  I needed more time.  I couldn’t think of one single thing.  This is a relatively new problem for me.  I used to be able to divulge my many virtues at the drop of a hat.  But alas, my cockiness has been knocked down a few degrees.

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The potential inside

“She needs to toughen up,” my co-worker surmised after sharing a story about her daughter.  Apparently, her fourteen year old daughter’s feelings were hurt by a remark her friend said.  Her mother told us the remark was not that big of a deal and that her daughter is “too sensitive.”

Too sensitive.  I’m aware of that phrase.  I have poured out my soul in prayer to my Heavenly Father pleading to toughen up.

But as my co-worker described her daughter I had a new take on it.   Perhaps, and stay with my ramblings here, perhaps sensitivity should not be viewed as a character flaw.  What if sensitivity is a character strength given to a few souls to make the world a better place?  What if it’s our responsibility to bring some tenderness into this hardened place we call home?

Instead of stamping out this God given attribute, what if we are to learn how to share it?  True, we need to learn how to cope with this gift.  I can understand why the common belief is we need to toughen up.  That prevalent belief is for a sensitive’s soul own good.  Less heartache that way.  But isn’t that forcing someone born with the gift of sensitivity into someone he or she is not?  There has got to be a way to be a happy thoughtful soul who shares the gift of tenderness.

Shortly after this conversation, I went to see Disney’s Frozen.  (By the way, I recommend this movie.  The best Disney animated film I’ve seen since Tarzan)  The movie seemed to continue my train of thought.  I don’t want to be a plot spoiler so let me just sum up by saying it’s about a girl who can’t use her innate talents and is forced to hide.  She becomes somebody she was not meant to be and does not live up to her potential.

Is that what happens to most of us?  We are afraid to use our abilities or maybe we don’t understand them so we live half-lives never reaching our full potential.  We stamp out our gifts until we conform to the world’s standards.   Perhaps we feel if we don’t possess the right talents we are not good enough.  In reality, we just need to learn how to use our own gifts.

Anyone willing to weigh in on this?

Want to hear a song from Frozen sung by the character I mentioned?