I spent the first decade of my career learning, growing, and acquiring new skills.  When I got to the executive ranks, I had an existential crisis and asked myself, “Who am I in this new role?” While I spent so much time and energy throwing myself into new and challenging positions and situations, I forgot to do one very important thing along the way – stop comparing myself to my peers and define what makes me uniquely capable for my position. I think of this my superpowers.
It's easy to fall into the trap of thinking that you are supposed to have certain skill sets, be better at one thing over another, or be more like the superstars within your company that you’ve looked up to for so long. The truth is that having your own special sauce is why people will turn to you over someone else. So, define the amazing and unique attributes that have gotten you to where you are, and don’t lose sight of them.
I spent too much time and energy thinking about the things I WASN’T good at, versus cultivating and nourishing where I excel. Luckily, I had help from an amazing coach who helped me get past self-doubt and focus on the traits that are inherent within me that are powerful in their own right.

I want to pass along a few tips to help you identify and hone your very own superpowers:

First, you should identify the tangible and intangible qualities that make you great  – such as building relationships, creativity, problem solving, attention to detail…and the list goes on! Obviously, this seems like the hardest part, and it is, but only because you’ve likely been in your own way. First, you have to do something that is inherently HARD for us as women – be selfish. Put others out of your mind and put your crown on, because it’s time to really flaunt what you got. Sit down, away from distractions, and ask yourself the following questions:
-       What was a time where you felt you really crushed something at work or in life?
-       What skill that was inherent in you were you using to achieve that moment?
-       What was the reaction or outcome that it elicited from others?
-       Have you experienced something similar more than a handful of times? If yes, you’ve likely identified a superpower!
Second, it’s important to articulate your talents for yourself and others. Write them down. What they mean to you. How you use them. This could be a bulleted list, a personal statement about yourself, or incorporated into your bio.
Here’s my list: I am a good and insightful manager of people; I am good at developing relationships; I am good at learning and picking up on new topics, and I am good at defining and leveraging the levers of our business to meet targets. I am compassionate and I lead with kindness. I am a good communicator, and I am thoughtful.
Third, let go of what you’re not. You cannot feel bad about yourself because some people are better at things than you are. In fact, you should get to know your colleagues’ superpowers and join forces and crush your goals together! However, just because you may not have the same superpowers as someone else, doesn’t mean you shouldn’t work on those, too. This is simply getting outside of your comfort zone which is equally as important as identifying your superpowers. For me, this was networking. I was fixated on a certain way in which you were supposed to network so I did two things: 1) found someone who was better than me at networking and asked them their secrets, and 2) figured out my own way to make connections. Once I figured out that I could create my own rules, I actually started to turn that into a superpower (see my article on how I overcame my dislike of networking for more on this topic).
Forth and most importantly, use your superpowers to your advantage. Don’t be bashful about sharing what you’re really good at and  use those qualities to positively impact your and others’ journeys. Put your superpowers to work and give yourself a virtual high five when you’ve successfully dealt with a challenge. You also should foster your most prized and powerful talents. Mentor others, humbly share them on social media, use them to close a deal or achieve a work goal, or take a class to get even better. I enjoy talking about my superpowers, particularly with students who have yet to enter the workforce in hopes to help them do the same, or even see something in themselves they hadn’t noticed beforehand.
Finally, repeat this exercise occasionally. You surely will identify new powers throughout your journey, and you have to pay close attention to not let those moments pass you by where you realize – I’m really good at this and need to use it to my advantage.
There you have it – you are a superhero with unique powers that make this world a better place. I’d love to hear from you and learn more about your superpowers! Please connect with me on LinkedIn!