How to Find Your Natural Expertise?

Posted on by Sen.

When we talk about natural expertise we usually restrict our focus on defining the “area” of talent, for example, we might say “he is talented in singing” or “he’s talented with number crunching” – I would call this “area-based” talent. So, whenever you are asked to look within and find your natural expertise, you immediately start looking for a specific area-based talent, however, the truth is that your natural expertise does not just depend on your area-based talent but it also depends largely on the style of execution that’s natural to you. Most of us are good at a few things, for example, you may be good at singing, painting/crafts, writing fiction, cooking and comedy, so all of these may be your area-based talents but you may not be productive in any of these areas in terms of commercial viability and hence may be depending on doing something in an area, that’s not aligned with your talent, purely for the sake of making money – this leaves you feeling frustrated due to the sense of struggle and disconnection. Unless you are making a contribution, and hence making money, through your natural expertise, you are bound to feel a nagging sense of disconnection with yourself which manifests into irritability, frustration and self-deprecation.

As I mentioned above, your natural expertise is not just “area-based” but also “execution based” – it’s not just the area that you are naturally good at, but also the style of execution that you are naturally aligned with. Most of us are not aware of what’s our natural style of execution and this is the reason why we usually fail at bringing out our full potential in terms of professional productivity, which is what is required for a consumer-friendly contribution and hence is required for an inflow of money for you (this post follows up on the previous post on – A Deeper Perspective on Money where I talk about consumption-contribution principle for balanced flow of money). Making money has a light and dark nature associated with it, the light nature is one of contribution and the dark nature is one of professionalism – a professional contribution involves the whole cycle of idea generation, organization and packaging, which is what makes it a truly useful product in terms of public consumption.

It’s one thing to be good/talented at something and a totally different thing to be able to make it professionally productive for public consumption. It’s also a fact that it takes professional productivity to create a product, or service, that serves a large-scale value – a product/service without any real structure is hardly useful to the large-scale public and hence lacks a commercial value, for example, you may be good at playing the guitar but unless you are out playing in the clubs, or packaging your own album, it has very little contribution value because it’s not reaching a target audience and hence has very little capacity to generate money for you. What’s really important to understand is that you don’t have to be good at all the aspects of professional productivity, you just have to be good at one particular style of execution needed in the cycle of production and then you need to work on the basis of “co-operation” with people, possessing the other styles of execution, in order to create a professional product/service.

Understanding your natural style of execution

Before understanding what I mean by “execution style”, it’s important to understand what talent means. A lot of people equate talent to expertise, which is just a misplaced thinking. Talent is just something you are “comfortable” doing, for example if you are comfortable driving a car that’s a talent you have (you may take it for granted but there are many who are highly uncomfortable driving a car because their mind cannot process multiple inputs, like steering and accelerating, at the same time). Talent is that simple, it’s just something you are comfortable with and hence something that you are quite good at, something that doesn’t feel alien to you. For example, I can clearly say that singing is not my talent because I am just not comfortable with it and I am extremely bad at it, and the same holds true for painting/drawing because I still draw like a one year old and it’s not something I feel creatively comfortable with. Now one might say that “pratice makes perfect” (the nurture vs nature argument), and I am sure if I really practice hard I might improve in some way in both these areas, but the truth is that it would never feel natural to me, it would always feel “forced”. A better perspective is to understand that if you feel naturally comfortable with something then you can use “practice” to become an expert at it, and though practice requires work, you will not find it to be a struggle, and it won’t feel unnaturally forced.

Let go of having some high-blown, extra-ordinary, idea about what “talent” means. Just keep it simple, talent is just something that you are comfortable with, something that “you” feel you are quite good at. If you observe, it’s quite easy (especially as an adult) to know the things that you are not good at, or uncomfortable at, and things that you are quite good at. For example, I am not good/comfortable at – singing, cooking, yoga, comedy/wit, debates or organized elocution or oration, politics, financial areas (stocks, real estate, commodity trading et al), painting, creating music, math, sports in general, working with gadgets, story telling, riding roller coasters (yeah that matters), organized dancing (I just can’t follow dance instructions/steps) etc. From my observation I find that I am good/comfortable at – reading, non-fictional writing, analytical thinking, psychology, working out with weights and driving. Of course the list of things you are not good at will always be much larger than things you are good at, that’s because there are too many options/choices/aspects in life but each of us is mostly designed to experience only a subset of options from them (and it’s a good thing to have this limitation so that we can decide what to focus on, too many options will leave you confused and scattered).

So, a talent is like a “potential” that you can work with towards converting into a productive out-flow which will provide a contribution towards the public and allow for a monetary inflow for you. You can use some of the talents purely for re-creational purposes, for example, I would use driving, working out and reading for re-creational purposes, while using reading, non-fictional writing, analytical thinking for productive purposes – one can use certain talents for both, re-creation and productivity. The crux is that when a talent needs to be converted into a publicly consumable product/service it requires you to “execute” in a manner that allows for a professional contribution. However, the cycle of professional contribution/productivity requires different styles of execution, that need to work in unison, to deliver the product as commercially consumable; the different styles of execution are as below

The creative imagination, or idea, generator – Some people are really good at coming up with ideas relating to their “area-based” talent. For example, the concept of “dubstep” was just an idea that someone came up with about how to integrate repetitive techno into music, so this person was quite good at working with music (area-based talent) and came up with the idea to create a new genre of music. Not everyone is good at out of box thinking or creative imagination in terms of idea generation. However, these people lack the organizational capabilities to put the idea into professional execution, in fact they may even lack the foresight/acuity to envision the potential of their idea; they just come up with the idea and usually let it drift if they are assisted towards “grounding” it by a visionary (discussed below). These people are very good at analytical thinking, logical reasoning and complex cognitive perception, in other words they are really good “thinkers”. This style of execution has a very important place in the cycle of professional productivity, after all it’s the idea that gives birth to a product to start with. It’s just that the people who are naturally good at this style of execution can be very poor at routine-work, or ground work, which is required for managing/marketing a product. They are unstructured and come across as being dis-organized, haphazard, lacking discipline and dedication.

The visionary – Some people are naturally good at being a visionary with respect to the contribution potential of an idea, or its real world use-ability – in other words they understand the productivity aspect of an idea. These people are good at grounding an idea to the real world in terms of thinking about the various possibilities for contribution, marketability and revenue generation. They are “thinkers”, and they work with their vision for the potential of the idea, however they are also not good at putting things in place in terms of doing the ground work. You can think of them as navigators who work on creating a map of the journey, once they get the idea for the journey, but they are not good at finding the details of how to traverse the journey on the ground. The place for this style of execution, in the cycle of productivity, is that these people are good at envisioning the potential of an idea and mapping a general direction for the idea – they stay with the idea, they create a template for the idea and can thus sell/market an idea. They hate working on details or the nitty-gritty stuff of how to execute the idea in real-time, they hate routines, they hate dealing with technical issues, but they are good at understanding the potential of an idea. They are structured, but find the “routines” of organization, details, delegation and ground work, to be draining.

The organizer – These people are good at creating a workable plan with respect to understanding the nitty-gritty requirements. They can come up with the details needed to execute an idea, in fact they are really good with details. They have a penchant for asking the detail oriented questions with respect to real world marketability, resources, time constraints, applicability and challenges. They are highly structured and they love to work with the “to do” lists, setting goals, setting deadlines, setting priorities and understanding limitations – they are very practical. They have a proclivity towards converting everything in a workable plan, schedule or structure. They find it very difficult to communicate with people who are not detail-oriented or “practical” – hence they are not great with the “creative imagination generator” type people who they might think of as slobs. This style of execution is necessary for organizing a plan and aggregating/delegating the resources required to get the plan rolling into the “production” stage. They are not great thinkers but excellent “doers” with respect to doing the organization of ground work.

The work horse – They are not very creative, they are not big on “thinking”, but they are great at routine work, highly efficient at getting the “ground work” accomplished. They are unstructured in the sense that they are not big on “planning” or organizing, but they are highly focused in terms of getting a specific job done if they are given a deadline and a well detailed project to work on. In other words, you can give them some work that’s required as a part of packaging the product and they will stay with it efficiently as long as you are paying for their keep; they are not very interested in understanding the higher level implication of their work, they are less concerned with the bigger picture of the organization, they just like having their work spelled out correctly so that they can go at it with a narrow focus. They are good at executing the ground work to create a solution, they are not good at coming up with the creative thinking for generating a solution. Of course all the styles of execution are a form of “work”, but this particular style of execution has a narrow element of being work-centric without emotional (or deeper level) intelligence regarding the work. They are most comfortable when they don’t have to come up with ideas or use their imagination too much. The work horse style of execution is necessary to bring an idea into real world production which involves routines, maintenance and reporting.

You will notice that you will fit into to one of the above styles of execution prominently, and predominantly, while being “okay” at other styles of execution. We all have the capacity to take care of all these styles of execution, on our own, but we are naturally inclined (and comfortable) towards one particular style of execution, which is part of our natural expertise. A person who’s style of execution is one of a “work horse” will always find it difficult to be a visionary and vice versa, and it would feel forced, like a real struggle. Identifying your natural style of execution allows you to stop trying to fit into a style of execution that’s just not aligned with you. A lot of us end up belittling ourselves by thinking that we are “stupid” for not being good at a particular style of execution, for example a creative-imagination generator type of a person would constantly feel criticized for not being methodical, or structured, enough to execute his ideas, and he may start feeling negative about himself, thinking that there is something wrong with him, when in truth it’s just his natural style of execution.

Productivity requires co-operation

To be truly productive in the real-world you need to use the leverage of co-operation. Each style of execution is complimentary towards the other styles of execution, and they are all needed for professional productivity. A team should ideally consist of people who collectively bring in all the four styles of execution to the fore; for example, a team that only has “organizers” without the “work horses” would never be able to get the routine work in place and hence will have issues with packaging, maintenance and reports, and without the visionary there is no higher level motivation, and without the idea generators there is no new venture to work on. The way we are created/designed is so that we fit in with a cycle of productivity through our natural style of execution in our area-based talent. For example, your area-based talent may be in cooking and your style of execution may be one of a visionary – it’s important to understand both these aspects in you to truly realize your potential for contribution, and which role you fit in with.

Co-operation is the basis of real world productivity, you can’t be an island onto yourself. However, it’s important that you bring in the co-operation of people who are different than you in terms of their style of execution while having a similar area-based talent. You will also have to learn to understand the thinking of a person with a different style of execution than yours – for example, it’s easy for a work-horse type person to put down a visionary type person by saying that he/she is not doing any “real” work, when in truth the visionary is doing the work of creating the template for the idea’s potential and the work-horse is getting employed because of that vision. One style of execution is not “higher” than another style, they are all of the same value because they are all needed for the completion of productivity cycle.

If you are wondering which style of execution makes the most money, the answer would be that your money making ability does not depend on a style of execution but upon how aligned you are with your natural expertise and how much you value it. One style of execution is not more financial superior to another, since they all have the same value in the production cycle. Of course, we all have different financial requirements and from a place of alignment we can bring in the financial inflow that’s congruent with our particular requirement. The money inflow, relative to your true requirement, will come in as a byproduct of your alignment; it’s not something that you need to work on specifically. What you need to work on is finding your natural style of execution, finding the areas of talent, and making a conscious choice towards working from this place of alignment. For all you know, the only blockade to your productivity (and higher returns) could be the fact that you are not delegating parts of your work that are not suited to your style of execution, for example, if you are an “organizer” type person you can delegate/outsource the parts that need a “work horse” and thus have more time to work on the planning aspects, leading to an improvement in your productivity as a whole.

To take my personal example, I find myself to be more of a creative imagination/idea generator type person. For a good part of my life I kept struggling with trying to fit into the “work horse” mindset which was externally conditioned into me (or which I took up based on unconscious thinking). I have always been a “thinker”, I like observing, analyzing and reasoning out things; it’s difficult for me to follow rigid instructions, it’s difficult for me to focus on a routine work, I am not great at working with systems and protocols (for ex, the very idea of filing for a visa makes me not want to travel), I can’t stay with one thing for long unless I find new creative possibilities in it, I can work on intricate details of analytical thinking but am not great at dealing with the details of organization/mapping/planning needed to create a product. My brother is more of an organizer, and in our business that’s a big help in ensuring that some of my ideas get into production or find a channel of productive expression. Even with respect to this blog, I came up with the idea for it and I write the content, while he took care of the technical aspects of registering the web-domain, putting up the wordpress template, auto backups and handling the administration – running a wordpress domain may not seem like a lot of work but it would have deterred me from grounding this idea if I had to manage that aspect (so you can see how small things matter in the cycle of execution). All of this holds true even in a 9 to 5 job, if your role, in the office, is in opposition to your natural style of execution you will always find it difficult to be truly productive.

Why do we disconnect with our style of execution?

Like I mentioned, we all have the capacity to work with all the styles of execution, it’s just that none us is naturally aligned with all the styles – we are predominantly aligned with one style of execution and have secondary inclination towards another style, with a tertiary and quaternary inclination towards the rest. Working on our predominant style of execution is what allows for highest sense of satisfaction, aliveness, interest and contribution. On the contrary if you are stuck working on a tertiary or quaternary style of execution, on a predominant basis, you are bound to feel irritated, stressed out and low on productivity. And why would we do that? It’s mostly because of a lack of self-awareness or self-understanding, where we mindlessly follow a certain way of behaving/working which was impressed upon us a kid, for example if your parents were mostly work horses they would try to condition you with their mindset (when they are low on awareness towards understanding your needs), while you may be an “idea generator” type of a person, causing you feel incompetent for not standing up to the expectations of your parents – some people keep trying to fit in to their past conditioning instead of taking the time to work on self-awareness, to understand their natural style of execution or talent.

There is also this sense of not valuing one’s expertise or contribution – this sense is usually at the background of being resistant to allowing a balanced inflow of money relative to your contribution. You will notice some people valuing each aspect of what they do, to the point of charging for every minute that they expend their service, and then there are people who might put in several hours of service without valuing it too much. You can allow your contribution to bring in the natural value if you don’t impose a limiting thinking on top of it of undervaluing yourself. For example, a creative idea generator can easily start undervaluing his/her work because externally it doesn’t seem like a lot of work, because the work is mostly done in terms of “thinking” rather than in terms of “doing” – to someone watching from outside it may seem like the “idea generator” type person is basically doing nothing, because his/her work is not externally visible as that of a work horse or an organizer. However, in truth, creative ideas and new ways of thinking are pivotal to bring in better productivity, new products and new solutions, which can create a lot of financial improvement for the outside – the “idea generator” type people have to understand this value that they are providing and stop undermining their contribution in their own mind; when they let go of this form of limiting thinking they can allow a balanced inflow of money relative to their contribution. The same is true for all the different styles of execution – if you are not experiencing a balanced inflow of money, it’s an indication that you may either be disconnected with your natural style of execution or may be undermining the value you are providing by self-deprecating thoughts.

It takes self-awareness, and the state of allowing the release of the pull of past conditioning, to let go of functioning from an incongruent style of execution. A visionary would find it really hard to be a work-horse, but he/she may continue doing so from a place of old conditioning which they are afraid of letting go. If you are too identified with certain patterns of conditioning, you will have to bring in a deep awareness towards it and see through your struggle based preoccupation with those patterns (using Brainev, along with the state of allowing, is highly effective in releasing strong identification with past conditioned patterns, especially the anxiety of letting go – as discussed in the post “Eliminating Anxiety”). It’s important to recognize what feels like your natural style of execution, especially by seeing through the styles of execution that don’t feel “comfortable” to you – this recognition not only serves the purpose of giving you the opportunity to move towards higher productivity but also allows you to let go of any sense of self-deprecation that you felt, towards yourself, while struggling with a style of execution that’s not natural to you.

Your natural expertise, in productivity, is a combination of your area-based talent and style of execution. You can’t do much with your talent if you are struggling with a style of execution that’s not natural to you. The fact is that unless you let go of the style of execution that’s not natural to you, you can’t find the co-operative assistance coming in from the outside – you need to create a gap before it can get filled, if you keep working at all styles of execution on your own you will not allow an opening to be filled by a co-operative element. Once you consciously recognize your style of execution, and align with it (by letting go of limiting conditioning), you will feel a strong sense of connecting with your purpose in your current human existence, a sense of fitting-in which you may not have felt before – this connection opens up the doors for fluent productivity, personal satisfaction along with consistent growth opportunities and abundant inflow of money (relative to your requirement).

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  1. Markus

    Sen: “For example, a creative idea generator can easily start undervaluing his/her work because externally it doesn’t seem like a lot of work … – the “idea generator” type people have to understand this value that they are providing and stop undermining their contribution in their own mind;”

    Spot on. I am strong in this archetype, with some strength in the work horse type. You need good ideas, thinking outside the box, or new methods? I’m your man. You want a schedule of tasks and a budget? Sorry, I cannot help you (though I could think of some crafty alternative approaches).

    My field of work has a lot of the latter, and this has definitely affected my productivity. I’ve often been critical of myself for not being organized enough at my job – I do my job well; however, whoever takes over for me when I move on will be groping in the dark for details about how the work is done. The point is that I’ve hurt my own ability to earn by doubting my worth. By seeing the value of my contribution as less, I undermine the energetic value of my contribution. Frustrating, but at least I am now aware of what I am doing. That’s always the first step to changing the pattern.

  2. A visionary horse

    Excelent post, very spot on.

    The “Work Horse” description really applies to me, I knew I had a strong presence of that archetype in me the moment I read it. I have a job that is aligned with a “work horse” mindset, and I constantly feel baffled by the “laziness” of my co workers (who, now I realize, may simply be in a job that isn’t aligned with their capacities). It’s very easy for me to methodically follow plans and instructions, and I also like to get things “done” (preferably very palpable and visible things, if you understand me).

    Paradoxically, I also see “visionary” characteristics in me. I dont know how those archetypes merge together, but I will certainly discover it. These last days have been great in terms of self discovery for me.

    All in all, this post gave me a huge clarity, and also a lot to think about.

    1. Sen Post author

      It’s possible that your primary style of execution is that of an “organizer” – the fact that you are “structured” (being methodical with plans and instructions is a strong point of an “organizer” type person) and have an objectivity towards application points to this aspect in you, the organizer also has a “vision” in terms of being a person who works with organizing all the ground-level plans (what you call palpable/visible things). What I mean by the “work horse” archetype are people who are unstructured in terms of not really connecting with a higher level plan, but who can follow specific orders – like a soldier follows the orders of a colonel without really needing to know the bigger picture of things. An “organizer” and a “work horse” are both “doers” in that they are busy on the ground work application and getting things done, the “creative thinker” and the “visionary” are mostly thinkers who come up with ideas, creative solutions, who hold ideas, who hold mission statements – they work more at the “thinking” level than at the ground work level – following rigid instructions, routines and details of ground work does not suit the visionary or the creative thinker type person.

  3. Priya

    how can u know the money requirement correctly? my ego says i shud have more money than anyone else around,, i have been belittled over the money that i make,, my early childhood was marked with financial struggle. am willing to allow myself to reach my nautral style of working and fit in .i have found a job which is good and i believe is the outcome of a lot of shud i believe that life wil back me up and set right wotever is not in order?

    1. Sen Post author

      Priya, we are usually inundated by so much outside conditioning, regarding money, that we lose track of what really is our original thinking about the lifestyle we want – we simply buy in to the outside standards and influences regarding how we determine our requirements. The whole deal of working with self-awareness is to discover what you are really about, and the state of allowing (which inherently allows the release of the pull of conditioning/patterns/emotional-momentum which is not aligned with you) is conducive towards this self-discovery because it inevitably brings you towards a deeper connection with yourself – your inner connection also manifests on the outside in terms of you finding more and more compatibility in areas of work (finance), health and relationship, along with getting a sense of what type of lifestyle really suits you at this point in your life.

  4. abet

    But this kinds of contradicts with your last article, and you saying about how work is not supposed to be fun and there are certtain things we have to do even if we dont feel “inclined”.. While on this article you are saying that if we dont feel “inclined” we shouldn’t do it at all.

    1. Sen Post author

      abet, work that aligned with your natural expertise allows for the best use of your potential, and in doing so you feel more connected with your sense of purpose and satisfaction. From this place work is not a “struggle” in terms of it feeling incompatible with our potential, but that doesn’t mean that work is “always” fun; Work is not always fun because there are times when you need to bring in aspects of responsibility and organization to provide a professional contribution.

      What I mentioned in the last post is that – “work doesn’t have to be struggle” and “work is not play”. It’s easy to misinterpret these two pointers.

      When I say “work is not play” it’s an obvious pointer towards the fact that work has a purpose towards professional contribution (a contribution which has a quality public use-ability), and as mentioned in this post, a professional contribution/productivity requires aspect of organization, system, responsibility and structured output. It can’t be a frivolous and scattered output. This doesn’t mean that work has to be struggle, it just means that work requires an attitude that’s different from how we approach play. Work involves bringing forth your natural expertise and creating the right application (which can involve working in co-operation with other people) towards a professional contribution.

      And when I talk about “work doesn’t have to be a struggle” it’s simply a pointer towards the fact that any work that’s aligned with your natural style of execution, and area-based talent, feels compatible with you and hence there is no “friction” within. Work is struggle when you are working from a place of inner disconnection, and from this place you can’t be at your highest level of contribution/productivity in terms of quality of output – so one has to find one’s natural style of execution and area-based talents and from this place work is not a struggle, it feels like an output of your true potential(s) from a place of inspiration, creativity and purpose.

  5. Alliswell

    Sen, If my execution type is creative, thinker/ visionary and I work in a creative field, yet still feel frustrated. What is the problem? I enjoy what I do, per se, and understand my style of execution is not organized or disciplined, how do I increase income if I do not feel compelled to work harder? Accept that this is my style and that I may never be a huge wage earner due to the two attributes?

    But, what if I would like more income? Not a lot, but more to be secure.

    1. Sen Post author

      Alliswell, though this post focuses on an external aspect like making money, it’s important to keep in mind that the foundation always is one of the “inner work”. Finding an inner balance, which comes from a place of inner freedom by consciously letting go of the momentum of your mental/emotional pull, is crucial to attracting a balanced external reality. A post like this is basically just an add-on in terms of giving some insight on personality types, but the core pointer always is to first find your inner balance/wholeness. Without this foundation it’s not possible to work on the external reality aspect – to try to fix the outside, without first balancing your inside, doesn’t work out. An external lack of compatible reality (with respect of finance, relationship or health) is always indicative of an inner imbalance towards either a light or dark nature aspect. For example, inner power is a dark nature aspect that’s required to be balanced in one’s being in order to be an effective human being.

      A lack of inner power reflects in all of our external life situations like needy/dysfuncational relationships, weak financial situation and health issues. Once you balance this aspect of inner power, you will be able to find the right mindset towards productivity and hence towards allowing a balanced inflow of money – for example, from a place of balanced inner power, you may be able to let go of certain limiting ways of thinking about money, you may be willing to take a more dynamic approach, you may be more powerful in your social interactions, you may feel open to allowing more co-operation with other people/resources (who can help with the organization and delivery aspects) and be capable of a better focus towards employing your abilities. It’s not about “working harder”, it’s about working to employ your abilities to your best potential – the desire to employ our abilities is an inherent nature/need in us, and the only reason we keep blocking a free expression of this nature is because we keep thinking in terms of “how can I make more money” instead of “how can I employ my abilities better”.

      An important pointer to consider is that if your motivation for productivity is coming from a place of “how can this make more money for me”, it will not allow you to employ your creativity/ability in a free manner, it will always feel blocked in some way – this is usually the tendency in people who focus on money more than the desire to employ their abilities. If you focus on employing your abilities, without holding thoughts of lack about money or how it will make more money, without holding thoughts of self-deprecation, you are bound to allow a balanced inflow of money – instead, if you keep focusing on how to make more money, you will not be able to connect fully with your potential. Just work to employ your abilities to the full extent, with an open mindset of knowing that your abilities are given to you for a reason in that they fulfill a requirement in this world, and your application will bring forth an equal contribution from the outside towards you. Your mindset should purely be towards finding ways to employ your abilities in the best possible manner, which can involve seeking co-operation from people who can compliment your abilities with their style of execution to allow you to be most productive. Let go of thinking from a place of “how to make more money”, rather think from the place of “what are the things I want to work on to employ my abilities” on a daily basis.

  6. Taylor

    Sen, thank you so much for your insight, it is truly a gift to all of us. I have been asking friends this question (they have no answer), and it occurred to me I should ask this question to you:

    What if what you truly love and want to do is (according to the textbooks) “bad for you”?

    Example: I love to play poker. Sometimes I win, sometimes I lose, but there is no “job” (I have been a worker-bee and a business owner) that gives me the satisfaction (rush, excitement etc) that poker/gambling does. The idea of quitting my job and moving to Vegas to play poker and be able to take trips (when poker is going well) is a very exciting thought. Not every day in that life would be thrilling, there would be terrible days, but the idea of that life is very exciting to me, yet anyone would say “Don’t wreck your life for a pipe-dream” etc. Let’s face it, very few people make money consistently playing poker/gambling.

    So what do you say, what if what you truly love to do is not something that you really should do??

    1. Taylor

      Sen, apologies, I also want to add that I am very health conscience, and poker is terrible for my blood pressure. When you are involved in a hand, I get very nervous etc etc. So poker is clearly a terrible choice from the health perspective….yet I love it.

      Is this an addiction (escape etc), or could it really just be something that is a Natural Talent that happens to “not be good for you”?

      Would you say that a true Natural Talent is something that would never conflict with your health?? If so, what about the Competitive Eaters or Car Racing etc…don’t these professions have danger, yet their participants truly love what they do.

      Thank you in advance for your insight.

    2. Sen Post author

      Taylor, as mentioned in this post, the talents we possess (things we are quite good at) can provide us with “re-creational” value and “production” value. To employ our production value is as important as using employing re-creation value. If your life is purely about re-creational value it leads to an imbalance (an imbalance of joy dimension which leads to consequences like restlessness, over-excitement leading to the opposite polarities of depression and instability). One has to have a balance between production value and re-creational value. It’s pretty evident that your poker talent has a strong re-creation value for you – in that it gives you a rush/excitement/thrill. So you can always employ your poker talent for the re-creational value it provides. However, the other question is, what’s the production value that your poker talent provides? For example, if you are able to teach poker to people, that’s like adding a production value. The production value not only brings a balance to your re-creational value but it also creates a channel of “outflow” (contribution) which is needed to create a balanced inflow (not only of money but other things like balanced health and lifestyle). It’s all about understanding this inner need for balance, you can always sense when you are moving into an imbalance – to just live for excitement/rush always leads to an imbalance as it’s mostly about re-creation value.

      If you take the example of car-racing, a professional car-racer is well aware of the balance that’s required to stay in the realm of professional productivity along with catering to the re-creational value that it provides. For example, a professional car-racer would take care of his health, eating a balanced diet, exercising/working-out to keep reflexes sharp, and working on his mind to be able to focus better in order to make decisions on split second basis. He’s not just lost in the re-creational value of his talent, but is being responsible towards using employing his talent professionally. Car-racing provides re-creational value to the audience, and this is the production value that the car-racer provides through his professional productivity. If a car-racer is lost to the re-creational value, without doing the “work” needed to keep a balance, he is bound to become unstable/over-excited/restless which would directly affect his professional productivity and also lead to an imbalance in his health (or worse, lead to a reckless accident). The same principle holds true for “competitive eaters” – if you interview any professional “competitive eater” he will tell you about the balance he works on to ensure he stays in an optimal place to employ his talent professionally.

      You can use your talent for poker for its re-creational value and also for the production value. Just understand that you need to have balance towards employing your talent and not be lost to the pull of the talent itself. Working on your inner balance (spending time with connecting with your sense of being, releasing the restless momentum, releasing the emotional momentum) is critical towards using your talent in a balanced manner externally. Currently you seem to have a vibration of restlessness, over-excitement and a desperation, which is basically an indication of inner imbalance. From a state of balance you will be able to use the re-creational value of playing poker without making it into a form of helpless addiction, you will also be able to employ your ability to bring a production value to your talent (wanting to be productive is an inherent need/nature within us, which always finds an expression in a state of balance as there is no denial towards it).

    3. Markus

      Taylor, an example of how one might put gambling thrill to productive use – what would you think of becoming a stock trader? A trader offers service to people that has him gambling large sums of other people’s money. The responsibility requires keeping up-to-the-minute information and knowledge of how the “game” works. Pay might come from commission, which is your motivation to be professional and provide good results.

  7. Tyler

    I have a question regarding what I thought/hopefully still think is my passion. I love music. I’ve been listening to music of all kinds each and every day, growing and learning for the last half decade of so, and hope to for many years to come. Here’s my dillema though. As I’ve read, music is typically supposed to create a sense of joy in people. It’s supposed to make your troubles go away. This used to be my case, but not only does music (of all kinds. It’s not the style of music) no longer brings me great joy, it just hurts. I may have a tiny amount of enjoyment, but mostly I feel pressure, I don’t seem to recieve much of anything that’s happening, it’s all one big muddy blur. I have allowed whilst listening to music as well, and this seems to help marginally, but I stll don’t feel the music. It seems to just pass me by. I’m not expecting it to be amazing, but I just want to enjoy it, without confusion. I’m starting to wonder if I’m wasting my time even bothering, if maybe I should give up on music, and if maybe it is no longer my passion, even though I want it to be. I feel like I still love music, and though I’ve been dealing with this feeling for a couple years now, I never give up, but I’m starting to feel hopeless about it again. I don’t know what I should do, please help me!

  8. Jayson Zahidul

    Dear Sen,

    I would like to save your writings from Conscious Choice and on ward so that I can make some use of them when I, what you taught me return to the focus. As my journey continues first thing I would like to be the “Wholeness” once and for all thru let go, as I can sense the undercurrent of stream of consciousness starts breaking out the imaginary world of my egoic perception together with my delusional solid/core belief system. It feels like everything is swallowed by heart leaving it empty yet it feels like a shield around my chest. It gives me extreme shiver and disoriented sometimes coz I don’t know where I’m going. But my understanding of how life energy works is backing me up and I hold onto it no matter what.
    One thing I really would like to know about my emotional let go that how should I get it right on the release. Aside from sit and let go I’m talking about interaction basis emotions. For example my wife says something which angered me a lot as I’m feeling a burning hell inside of me, situations similar to that what would be the right approach to letting go?

    Jayson Zahidul

  9. Ganesh Shevate

    Hi Sen,

    Thank You for this detailed & still interesting Analysis about the natural expertise. I have received it on very appropriate time of my life & overall carrier.
    Another thing I guess that mine is a very simillar journey like you. I also find myself as a Thinker and not comfortable with “The Work Horse” mindset.
    It will be great if you share with us the relevant details about your biography. You can share it with us within a post or two. I think it will be helpful to build the courage in us.

    Love & Regards.


  10. Abhishek Gupta

    Hi Sen,

    I have released a good amount of emotional energy and mind momentum through various cycles of peace and pain and presently I feel a stability within. Now I want to go back to work and live a balanced life. I was a web designer before and have been jobless since last four months. As of now I do not feel panicked because of joblessness but I also have no clue what I want to do now. At times I feel a sudden urge that I should be doing this thing but then it fizzles out very soon and I am left with no energy to move ahead for it. Also, I desire about several things not just one thing, in that case, how do I choose which one is dominant and I should be moving towards it.

    Is my understanding correct that I should be allowing and not worrying about what vocation will it be when it will be and relax. I live in a solitary room, now not connected to my network much, and my mind wonders, from where possibly something new can come in my life if I will not do something about it. Do I need to employ my personal will, choose a direction and go on with it or just let my thoughts fall more and more in alignment to life’s movement and then I will be able to signs of progress.

    Thank you Sen for all your insights. Now I can validate that releasing emotional energy and mind momentum is real stuff!

  11. Jeroen

    Very good post.

    For a long time I’ve been feeling stuck in life. And since recently I am unimployed and have no idea of what I should do. My parents where both workhorse people and I grew up in that mindset. And I cant seem to escape this path. All the jobs I can get are workhorse jobs and it is very frusterating. I feel like I will never find my true potential. I can totaly find myself in the description of the creative thinker. I’ve always had these great ideas yet never pursued any of them.

    I have this dream of becoming a filmdirector yet feel inadequate to make it in this competitive buiseness. I believe in my talent yet have no organisational skills to make them happen. I have made some things that I am proud of yet they are not marketable. I havent given up this dream but seem to be unable to move foreward.

    I dont know what else I would be doing and am becoming a bit depressed because of it.
    Any ideas for jobs for the creative thinker?


  12. Maurice Spees

    Dear Sen,

    I feel it’s remarkable what you write in most posts. They’re so right on, as if straight from the source. And somehow they feel like serendipity on my road. You’re following universal principles and it’s mostly a direct recognition. The more aware you become the more you can relate to universal principles. Also this post.
    However. I am always a bit sceptic about putting people in boxes. While I am Dutch and that’s what our society is good at. The dark part of it. But still…
    Yes it’s true that as a child we develop skills, which become more part of our lives then others. For some people creative ideas come natural, and others don’t. And in this lies our ability to see our role or in within religion it’s called our calling. The things we practically do naturally and in which we can grow our own potential. I am also the creative idea initiator, but most ideas rise from an actual need in the market. I cannot come up with ideas for myself most of the time, or without being with people. And most things I find are actually coming through me, I don’t actually identify with them. So when only that would be my mission in life, my contribution, then all I need is recognition for that. Sometimes people recognize this ability and they put me on the right spot, but most of the time I need to lead the group, otherwise nothing will happen.
    If people take my view of the full picture and feel driven by it, they start to move. And eventually I realize I am not needed anymore, and move on. It’s very weird, I started lots of ventures, companies, entrepreneurs, artistic projects etc., and eventually left the projects when they were running on their own. It’s like I am just the right injection. So that’s my experience of being this idea initiator, or visionary. What I realize is that when I don’t facilitate things by myself, nothing happens. I can sit with the idea for years in a row. I had to learn to ask questions, to talk to the right people, to invite people etc. But most of the time I end up doing it mostly by myself anyways. While most people want me to do all the work, so that they can join right in when it’s all finished.
    That means I am also all 4 types. When I would just be the first or second type then all I need to work for is letting people become aware of that, so they recognize me for having this role. While when people don’t really invite me into this role, I share an idea, people don’t want to hear it, we end up circling around with other ideas, going nowhere, and then at the end we end up with the idea I had in the first place. And this mostly is so much hassle, if people would recognize me for being the idea generator and go with that, we would already live heaven on earth. 😛

    I am sure you know Human Design. They also put people in roles. And they’re almost similar. I conditioned myself with this system for some time, but eventually I also realized that the basis of it feels so right on, that it’s easy to condition yourself with it. But in the end it scares me that you become dependent on the system and it actually is a new condition.
    However, I would love to know what your design is. I can recon it’s a projector. While the projector role is guiding generators, the worker bees. But in itself they do not have to do the job they came up with.
    So it would be great to share your type.
    I am curious.

    1. Sen Post author

      Maurice, each of us has the “capacity” to do the work with all the 4 mindsets of productivity, and hence we can drive our projects independently if we want to, it’s just that it’s far more comfortable to operate in co-operation understanding our role in the collective. It’s one thing to understand our natural mindset/expertise and it’s a totally different thing to have an attitude that brings us personal success (in terms of inner satisfaction and external stability, in terms of finances etc) along with contributing to collective success. For example, if you don’t value you natural expertise, you may end up giving away your value for low returns (or rather you end up resisting an inflow of returns), and it’s just a manifestation of the fact that you don’t really appreciate the value that you are providing – so in this case you may be aligned with your natural expertise but your attitude is one of berating yourself, or looking down upon the value that you are providing, which in turn causes you to resist the inflow of value from outside (in terms of returns and acknowledgment).

      Also this is not about putting people in boxes, rather it’s a process of self-discovery where you investigate (through self observation) to determine what feels most natural to you. Skills may be acquired, but what’s natural to you is just “inherent”, it’s part of the design that your body/brain is born with – developing skills is important but it’s just as important to understand what your natural tendencies are, what your natural mindset feels like. For example, a person who is a natural visionary may find it stifling to do the ground work, or work on the details of organization, but he/she may feel bad about not being “good” at it and live in a perpetual sense of self-deprecation – when they understand that the reason they find it stifling is because their brain/mind is not naturally designed for it, they let go of this self-deprecation, which by itself is a huge release of resistance, and it can open up a different way of thinking about their work or about how they want to work.

      As mentioned in the post, I find myself to primarily oriented towards the idea generator mindset while having a secondary inclination towards the work horse mindset. There was a time when I was too focused on being a work-horse and ended up stifling the idea-generator aspect in me. In my current awareness I can sense how my mind/brain requires some form of balance between being an idea generator and being a work-horse – for example, my idea generator mindset requires me to have to some time devoted to just thinking, analyzing and observing, while my work-horse mindset requires me to put in some “labor” in some form (it’s useful in that it allows me to write and edit in one sitting for 4 to 5 hours). If I only had to do the work-horse type work, it would totally feel stifling, and if I only had to be an idea generator it would still feel imbalanced. I do know for a fact that I am not good at organizing stuff or staying with one thing for long, so I need some outside co-operation in terms of needing a visionary (who can hold the project even after it’s in production) and an organizer – I do end up getting this co-operation more now that I am not trying to do it all, and now that I don’t feel bad about something that’s not really natural to me.

  13. Maurice Spees

    Thanks Sen, for your throughout explaination. You’re absolutely right in what you say. I hope next post you talk more about how then you can find these people to work with. Because being recognized for your role isn’t always easy. However, I realized that once you recognize others with their strength and give them recognition for that, they do the same for you. But we all have our conditionings to let go off in co-creation. And the trusting that the one who tabs in the source is the one with the idea. I also realize that we all have to go through forms of awareness, first self-awareness, and then group-awareness. The latter is what gets todays attention. Thanks for sharing, you truely inspire me.

  14. Ahlan

    Hi Sen,

    I request you to write a chapter about how to impart this knowledge to children. As a parent i would like my children to start at an early age about the concepts of wholeness, balance,natural self, awareness, openness etc. I am sure many parents on this blog would appreciate a post dedicated to this.

    My son just turned 12 and I am at a fix sometimes as to how to explain these things. I encourage him to watch his thoughts and he tells me about them. Like he says that he wants to be the best and he feels agitated if someone excels him in his class and he wants to be at the top. He has varied interest like football,singing,guitar,art,crafts and even wants to learn cooking.

    Now, how do i guide him to find out what his true nature/true interest is and how to align with it. I can understand this as an adult but how do I bring this knowing to a boy on the threshold of teenagehood?

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