Activity Set: Capabilities

Activity Set: Capabilities

Capabilities Activities: Quick Overview

Part 1: Core Emotional Challenges

  • Description: Identify emotional challenges that you’ve been through that you can help others overcome.
  • Life Work Activity: List 1-3 Core Emotional Challenges you could help others overcome.

Part 2: Talents, Skills, and Gifts

  • Description: Identify your talents and skills to determine the gifts that you can share with others.
  • Life Work Activity: Identify and list your Top 5 to 7 Gifts.

Part 3: Activities

  • Description: Identify the activities that you really love to do to see if there’s value in sharing it with others.
  • Life Work Activity: Identify and list your Top 5 to 7 Activities.

Use the “Serve Profoundly in Your Right Pond” Worksheet to document your answers for each Activity in this section. Click on this link – serve profoundly in your right pond worksheet, 9-25-22 – to download a copy of the worksheet (Microsoft Word file).




Part 1: Core Emotional Challenges (from the article, “Not Sure What Your Purpose at Work Is? This List Can Help You Spot It” by Laura Garnett)

This list of Life’s Emotional Challenges will help you identify the core emotional challenges you’ve faced in your life – and how these challenges can potentially help you define how you want to serve. To make this activity most effective, reflect on the personal challenges you’ve face over the course of your life – and how you were able to overcome them. As you think back to these challenges, you may have noticed a pattern that emerges, where a challenge/problem/issue continually appears in your life, but you also find easier ways to get through the challenge/problem/issue.

Your goal is to identify UP TO THREE (3) Core Emotional Challenges that seem to resonate with you the most. What challenge(s) seem to appear in your life, over and over? How were you able to overcome your challenge(s)? Your themes may describe the impact you’d like to have on others.

List of Core Emotional Challenges

  • Acceptance: Making others feel accepted – You’re driven by being nonjudgmental and receptive to others because you feel like you weren’t accepted by your family for being who you are.
  • Being Heard: Helping others find their voice – This might stem from growing up in a family where there was little to no communication or feeling like you were never heard. Helping others be open, find their voice, or fine-tune a message they need to share is endlessly fulfilling to you.
  • Belonging: Helping people find a place where they belong – You’re motivated by helping people find the exact role in their workplace or life in which they will shine. This likely stems from feeling like you were constantly trying to identify your own place in the world.
  • Boldness: Helping others be themselves – Based on a pattern of hiding yourself because you feared rejection, you want to help others be bold in a way that feels right for them.
  • Calmness: Helping others navigate chaos – If you had to navigate ongoing chaos throughout your childhood, you likely learned a unique skill of adaptation and being calm in the face of a storm. You’re fulfilled by helping others navigate a hectic, fast-paced, or disorganized workplace by being a voice of calm and reason.
  • Control: Helping others feel in control – If you felt inadequate and out of control in your early years due to an unstable home life or other events, it’s likely that helping others feel like they can take the reins in their own life is particularly meaningful to you.
  • Difference: Helping others follow a different path, rather than the expected one – If you’ve always been drawn to do something different than what others expected of you but were discouraged from pursuing those things, helping others take the road less traveled will be exhilarating.
  • Failure: Helping others overcome mistakes – This comes from dealing with the failures of others, most likely your parents or significant others. As a result, you’ve learned to make good decisions and avoid failures that negatively affect others. Also, you’re driven by helping others with this same challenge.
  • Fairness: Promoting justice – If you felt unfairly disadvantaged or didn’t get the same opportunities as others, it probably stuck with you. As a result, being impartial and advocating for fair treatment of others is not only meaningful to you, but also fundamental to how you operate.
  • Freedom: Helping others feel liberated – If you ever felt restricted in an unhealthy way, it’s motivating to you to help someone else feel free, unencumbered, and able to thrive as they wish.
  • Heal: Helping others deal with pain and suffering – This comes from dealing with pain – physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual – and finding ways to not only deal with the pain, but to possibly overcome it and thrive.
  • Ideal Environments: Creating spaces that allows people to thrive – This purpose is rooted in being raised in an environment, especially at school or at home, that felt like the wrong fit. As a result, you love creating ideal environments for others to thrive in.
  • Included: Making others feel included – You enjoy helping others feel included, because you once felt left out, especially if you were a shy child and often felt isolated.
  • Opportunities: Opening up options for others – If your core emotional challenge was growing up with a lack of opportunities (financial or otherwise), creating them for others offers great fulfillment.
  • Possibility: Helping others step outside of their comfort zone and realize what they’re capable of – Any activity that allows you help others step into possibility is rewarding. This is because you may have felt trapped, you didn’t believe in yourself, or you witnessed a parent not become fully actualized.
  • Potential: Ensuring life is operating smoothly and to its highest potential – You might identify with this if you were raised in a chaotic environment that didn’t allow you to cultivate your potential. Now, you are constantly managing situations in order to keep things running smoothly. The net result is that you help others operate at their full potential.
  • Positivity: Being a force of optimism – If you were raised in an environment that was often critical and negative, you’re fulfilled by bringing positivity to as many situations as possible.
  • Prioritization: Helping people realize that their wants and needs matter – You’re motivated by helping others understand that their wants and needs should be a priority because you know the pain of not having your needs met by others.
  • Standing Out: Helping others not feel invisible – You live to help individuals or organizations stand out. You know what it’s like to feel invisible, so you strive to help others speak up and say what’s on their mind.
  • Support: Exceeding expectations by supporting others – You love helping other people achieve great things. You may be counteracting a childhood experience during which the bar for achievement was high and support wasn’t provided for you to reach it.
  • Understanding: Helping others feel understood despite being different – This is meaningful for you because being understood by your family and close friends was a constant challenge.
  • Value: Making others feeling valued – If you were raised in a family where who you are was not valued, you may have been encouraged to be someone that you weren’t. You therefore want to help others feel valued for being exactly who they are.

Take a minute or two to write down up to THREE (3) Core Emotional Challenges resonate with you.  Again, if something isn’t on the list, feel free to write down your own core emotional challenge. As you identify your challenge(s), think about you you might be able to help others overcome the same challenge.

  • Core Emotional Challenge #1: __________________________________________________
  • Core Emotional Challenge #2: __________________________________________________
  • Core Emotional Challenge #3: __________________________________________________

Part 2: Talents, Skills, and Gifts

Talents are your natural, intuitive abilities to do well in particular activities. Skills are the talents you develop to become better as a result of additional time and effort. Gifts are the talents and skills you give away to make lives better by solving problems for others.

The “Talents, Skills, and Gifts” activity will have you identify the things that you’re good and the things you like (or love) to do – with the goal of using these gifts to help others solve problems and make their lives better. Be honest as you evaluate what you good at and what you like to do. Note: If there’s a talent and/or skill that you have that’s not listed, use the blank spaces at the end of this document to add it to the list.

Review the list below; place a check or an “X” next to the activities where “I’m good at it.” Place another check or “X” next those where “I like to do it.” Once complete, identify those activities that have marks for both what you’re good AND what you like to do. These are most likely the gifts you can share with others, which may help identify potential job and/or entrepreneurial activities. Your goal is to narrow down your options to the TOP FIVE (5) to SEVEN (7) activities that would come easy for you AND you would like to do.

I’m good at it I like to do it I’m good at it I like to do it
Adaptable/flexible Inspiring others
Analyzing data Learning from mistakes
Appreciating things Learning new things
Arranging things Leading others
Asking good questions Listening
Being adventurous Living in the moment
Being fair Making decisions
Being funny Making food and drink
Being optimistic Making arts and crafts
Bringing out best in others Making music
Building things Making people beautiful
Buying things Making people happy
Caring for others Making people laugh
Cleaning Making money
Collecting Managing money/budgets
Coming up with new ideas Managing/supervising people
Compiling statistics Managing time
Connecting people Meeting people
Cooking Memorizing
Coordinating events/activities Motivating others
Counseling Moving
Creating new things Networking
Dealing with pressure Note-taking
Dealing with relationships Organizing
Debating Parenting
Decorating Performing
Demonstrating Planning events/activities
Designing things Playing instruments
Developing Playing games
Driving Playing video games
Eating healthy Playing sports
Encouraging people Programming/coding
Enhancing beauty Public speaking
Entertaining others Reading
Exercising/being fit Recruiting people
Fixing things Reflecting
Future-thinking Remembering things
Gathering information Repairing things
Giving advice Dealing with adversity
Giving people hope Repairing relationships
Giving presentations Reporting
Having conversations Researching
Having fun Problem solving
Healing people Saving lives
Helping/serving others Selling/marketing
Implementing things Showing compassion/empathy
Including others Managing energy
Speaking languages Understanding law/legal issues
Spending wisely Using computers
Starting new things Using electronics
Storytelling Using/working with my hands
Taking care of people Using technology
Taking/editing pictures Working on cars
Taking risks Working outdoors
Talking Working with numbers
Teaching Working with tools
Training Writing
Critical thinking Working in teams
Traveling Creative thinking
Being curious Accounting/bookkeeping
Working with machines Meeting deadlines
Interpersonal skills Strong work ethic
Attention to detail/accurate Accepts responsibility
Managing stress Managing conflict
Negotiation/persuasion Showing enthusiasm
Being patient Being trustworthy
Handles criticism Being resilient/gritty
Designing people’s lives Designing rooms/environments
Ambitious/achievement Follows instructions
I’m good at it I like to do it I’m good at it I like to do it

As you review your list of Talents and Skills, narrow down your list of Gifts (those activities where you have both “I’m good at it” and “I like to do it” checked or marked with an “X”) to the FIVE (5) to SEVEN (7) Gifts that you enjoy using the most. List those activities in the space below. (Note: They DO NOT have to be ranked.)

  • Gift #1: ___________________________________________________________________________
  • Gift #2: ___________________________________________________________________________
  • Gift #3: ___________________________________________________________________________
  • Gift #4: ___________________________________________________________________________
  • Gift #5: ___________________________________________________________________________
  • Gift #6: ___________________________________________________________________________
  • Gift #7: ___________________________________________________________________________

Part 3: Activities: What Brings Me Joy?

The “Activities: What Brings Me Joy?” activity provides you with a tool to use to come up with ideas, based on the activities you like/love to do. If there are activities you like/love to do and/or delivery methods that aren’t listed, feel free to include them on your list.

Review the list below; place a check or an “X” next to the activities that you really enjoy doing. Keep in mind that you ARE NOT identify business ideas right now, you’re just identifying those things that you enjoy doing, those things that bring you joy when doing them. Eventually, you’ll be able to use this list (as well as others) to identify potential job and/or entrepreneurial activities.

Your goal is to narrow down your options to the TOP FIVE (5) to SEVEN (7) activities that would come easy for you AND you would like to do. If you don’t know where to start, use these questions to help you decide:

  • What do you LOVE to do?
  • What do you do for fun?
  • What are you curious about?
  • What are you interested in?
  • What do you do when you lose track of time?
  • What excites you?
  • What brings you joy?
  • What problem could you solve for other people?
  • What can you contribute that makes a positive difference to others?
  • What makes you angry or drives you crazy?
  • What matters to you that also matters to others?
  • What activities are so engaging that you lose track of time?

List of Activities

  • Diversity/Equity/Inclusion
  • Painting/Drawing
  • Writing/Journaling
  • Singing
  • Building/restoring furniture
  • Computer/phone repair
  • Telling jokes
  • Making people laugh
  • Building/coding/designing websites
  • Driving cars/trucks
  • Driving people
  • Riding motorcycles
  • Dancing (any type)
  • Reading books/articles
  • Reading scriptures/holy books
  • Video recording/editing
  • Listening to people
  • Talking to people
  • Self-help/personal development
  • Getting people through hard times
  • Carrying stuff for people
  • Delivering stuff to people
  • Dog walking
  • Pet sitting
  • Rescuing animals
  • Raising animals
  • Fixing things
  • Designing stuff
  • Support/help people in need of something
  • Helping people overcome adversity/obstacles/failure
  • Helping people figure out what to do in life
  • Providing therapy/counseling
  • Providing life coaching
  • Giving/creating instructions
  • Cooking/baking/grilling food
  • Healthy diets
  • Cleaning homes
  • Exercising/moving body
  • Playing sports
  • Coaching sports
  • Helping people with finances
  • Retrieving/collecting/searching for information
  • Using social media
  • Playing with kids
  • Childcare/Babysitting
  • Hiking/Climbing
  • Doing outdoor activities
  • Spending time in nature
  • Going on adventures
  • Making wine/beer
  • Connecting people
  • Visiting friends/family
  • Photography/Taking pictures
  • Solving puzzles
  • Doing yardwork/landscaping
  • Shopping for yourself
  • Shopping for others
  • Shopping online
  • Sewing
  • Quilting/knitting
  • Working with arts and crafts
  • Surfing the Web/Internet
  • Watching TV/movies/Netflix
  • Renovating homes
  • Decorating rooms/homes
  • Decorating stuff
  • Partying
  • Planning get-togethers
  • Eating out
  • Going to church
  • Riding horses
  • Riding/fixing bicycles
  • Going out on dates
  • Bringing people together
  • Doing stuff on phone/tablet
  • Doing stuff on computers
  • Playing pool/darts/bar games
  • Playing board/card games
  • Socializing with people
  • Helping do-it-yourself people
  • Hosting family reunions
  • Opening home to others
  • Matching clothes/outfits
  • Making clothes/outfits
  • Taking trips to zoos/parks
  • Playing music
  • Creating music
  • Listening to music
  • Recording information (on paper/computer/phone)
  • Volunteering in community
  • Feeding the hungry
  • Tutoring/Schoolwork help
  • Traveling/Going on trips
  • Helping people with travel plans
  • Camping
  • Antiquing
  • Thrifting
  • Giving/getting massages
  • Learning languages
  • Making handmade gifts
  • Making people look/feel beautiful
  • Sleeping/napping
  • Doing Meditation and/or mindfulness activities
  • Making/Creating things
  • Selling/Marketing things
  • Motivating people to do stuff
  • Giving/Providing feedback
  • Hanging out in coffee shops
  • Giving/receiving affection
  • Visiting museums/libraries
  • Making tattoos/piercings
  • Organizing stuff
  • Exploring health/wellness
  • Weight management
  • Learning about business
  • Creating businesses
  • Learning about money
  • Understanding stock market
  • Investing money
  • Cleaning/detailing cars
  • Fixing cars/vehicles
  • Building/creating stuff online
  • Giving sound advice
  • Entertaining others
  • Being a handyman
  • Writing grants
  • Securing money/donations
  • Helping people have a voice
  • Advocate for human rights
  • Farming/Hobby Farming
  • Plants/Gardening
  • Doing things in/on water
  • Dealing with relationships
  • Curating/clarifying information

Now that you’ve reviewed your list of activities, use the space below to identify your TOP FIVE (5) to SEVEN (7) Activities that you would like to explore as a potential ideas to start something yourself. List those activities in the space below.

  • Activity #1:  ______________________________________________________________________
  • Activity #2: _______________________________________________________________________
  • Activity #3: _______________________________________________________________________
  • Activity #4: _______________________________________________________________________
  • Activity #5: _______________________________________________________________________
  • Activity #6: _______________________________________________________________________
  • Activity #7: ________________________________________________________________________