I like to simplify complex ideas and motives into concise, overarching theories. I love classifying people and their intentions and boiling it all down to the lowest common factor. I have found that this process helps me to quickly analyze situations and make judgments based on some criteria rather than a gut feeling.
The problem is that this simplification leads to over-simplification…and classifying leads to prejudging…and boiling down ideas leaves nothing of value…and this, ultimately, leads to an overuse of ellipsis and a complete butchering of the written form of the English language.
But just for kicks, here’s one of my all-encompassing theories of the universe:
A person’s greatest strength is usually his greatest weakness as well.
Let’s use me as an example.
My strength: I am a big-picture person. I generally focus on the main objectives and, therefore, don’t sweat the small stuff. I don’t get bogged down in details and can usually come up with broad solutions and compromises for problems. I can typically see beyond the immediate problem and the immediate symptoms to the bigger issues.
My weakness: I am a big-picture person. I generally focus on the main objectives and, therefore, don’t care about the small stuff. I often ignore details and usually fail to consider small problems or the value of individuals. I typically overlook the immediate problem and the people involved while focusing on bigger issues.
I believe the greatest strength anyone can have is recognizing his own weaknesses, so I’m going to start looking for ways my strengths make me weaker. Oh no! That’s another really broad theory that needs some detail.
I’d love to see if this theory works. What are the inherent weaknesses that ride along with your strengths?