Your Very Particular Set of Skills

By Christopher Connors

Liam Neeson used his “very particular set of skills” in the movie Taken.
Liam Neeson used his “very particular set of skills” in the movie Taken.

I’ll admit it- I’m a sucker for the movie, Taken. Growing up in the golden age of vigilante films, I can spot a good one when I see one. Taken was a fine exhibition of this genre. One-man wrecking crews like Steven Seagal, Arnold Schwarzenegger and Sylvester Stallone were once all the rage.

These warriors always had a crime to avenge and often very personal ones, at that. This post is not meant to laud action films but rather to help you tap into that indescribable greatness that’s inside of you. Or as Liam Neeson’s character, Bryan Mills would say, “Your very particular set of skills.”

We’ve all acquired our own, “particular set of skills”, from a variety of personal, educational and professional experiences. Bryan Mills’ skills were acquired through- what we can only imagine- a long, brutal career working for the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA).

Chances are, like me, you’re not a spy. We’re fighting less strenuous battles, but hardly less consequential. In our pursuits, we’re developing skills. We should concentrate maximum energy and effort toward building these skills so they become strengths.

Life Tests Us

Life isn’t easy, in fact, life often presents us with significant physical, mental, spiritual and emotional challenges. On the spiritual side, we’re tempted in a multitude of ways to live a life that wars with the inner core- the true self– of who we really are.

On the mental, emotional and even physical side, all of us will lose loved ones, and deal with the awful pain that accompanies those losses. We endure painful break-ups with boyfriends or girlfriends, fights that test our mental resolve and we meet temporary failure pursuing our dreams.

As we keep progressing through life, it only becomes easier to let these difficult experiences define who we are. The path of least resistance emerges as a simple choice for many people. We find ourselves unhappy with our circumstances, but we’re beaten down from setbacks that weaken our willpower and lead to complacency.

This can result in us settling for second-best. We need to rise above mediocrity and disappointment, and come through the fire, knocking adversity to the ground. This takes resolve, courage and self-awareness. We have to live with self-awareness in order to avoid repeating previous mistakes.

Complacency is the enemy of achievement. Adversity will stare all of us down, time and time again throughout our lives. The question we continually face will be: “How do we respond?” A wise person once said,

“Your desire to change must be greater than your desire to stay the same.”

Examine Yourself

The way to continue evolving is to strive for improvement every day. Our personal and professional skills can always use a boost. Difficult times test us and shape who we are. Make sure that you let them shape you for the better.

I hope you’re able to read my stories and find words that provide you with motivation, inspiration and focus, as you journey on your path to self-improvement. I hope that I can provide tools to assist you in the development of your particular set of skills- and at minimum, the identification of what they are.

Most importantly, I encourage you to write out your current state in the following four areas of your life:

1) Professional/Educational
2) Spiritual
3) Emotional
4) Physical

You’ll be amazed at what you put down on paper when you’re honest with yourself. Once you have written your current state, your mission is to bridge the gap between where you and where you desire to be in the future state.

Set of Skills

When I haven’t been happy with my spiritual life, I’ve made it a plan to turn to search my soul and ask myself the difficult questions to understand why there is a lack of peace and harmony in my life. I have turned to my faith, relied on the help of others, but I have also sought time alone in solitude for reflection and contemplation.

When I felt like I was in a rut in my career, I reached out to trusted friends and mentors for advice. I improved my resume, networked ‘like a boss’ and determined what I needed in order to improve my skills. When I was having relationship difficulties or hurting emotionally, I turned to my family and friends for comfort and refuge. Fortunately, they have always had my back.

The Hunger For More

I’ve watched too many successful people become content with their own arsenal of skills — regardless of comparative depth — and then trudge on, for better or worse, finding whatever satisfaction and success they can. This is no way to live. We should always strive for greater things. I believe this is precisely what we are called to do.

I’ve increasingly developed a burning desire to challenge my experiential status quo and hunger for more. Something more soothing to the soul — more in line with what moves me inside and feels like home. This desire is visualized in my mind- imagined and obsessed over and then put into plan so it will become my reality.

Connecting this bridge between what is imagined and what is actionable will lead to a flourish of excitement and a horizon of new opportunities.

Along the way, fears and the voice inside our heads will occasionally remind us that we can’t do it. Just remember that you have your current and future state analysis to serve as your guide. When you put in writing what you need to do to find self-fulfillment and happiness, you’ll have a road map that guides and plots your path, when doubts arise.

We were all born with a particular set of skills that we are meant to share with the world. What are yours? Are you using these skills and trying to improve them today? Please, share your thoughts below!


Sign up for Updates

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Notify me of new posts by email.