Things I Am Good At

Update, April 13, 2018: I noticed this post getting traffic from Google ? and I realized that people were searching for ?things I am good at? and ending up here.

This post is merely one of the first times I bothered to admit, not only to myself but publicly, that I have? you know? strengths.

I don?t mean that I?ve never had confidence in myself ? because I have and do. But it?s always been in a specific context: putting skills on my resume, noting my accomplishments as a professional or student or athlete, knowing what I am capable of as a traveler and worker.

Last fall, I was traveling around Scotland (because I?m on the road full-time as a digital nomad), and suddenly, I had an urge to write down a list of things I am good at. Across the board. As a person.

I pretty much daily recite lists of things I am not good at, of my flaws and weaknesses. So it stopped me in my tracks when I heard a voice in my head announce this idea.

So whether you go on to read my whole post or not (though by all means, I?ve got quite a range & it might get your ideas flowing), I encourage you to scribble down a list of things you are good at.

I promise you?ll think of things ? you might be pleasantly surprised and entertained. And you just might be able to start challenging your daily criticisms with a few compliments? wouldn?t that be nice?

I wrote this yesterday after visiting the Fruitmarket Gallery in Edinburgh, Scotland, and looking through various art books in their shop. I stopped on the street a few minutes away and scribbled this in my notebook.

I have transcribed but not edited it, for the sake of it being a kind of time capsule of that moment in my brain.

Which list is easier to write? Your strengths or your weaknesses?

I spend more time each day giving myself shit and kicking myself for mistakes than I do thinking about anything else. So I made this list first.

Let?s be honest, I made them both at the same time. (Or did I?)

Some things I?m good at are things I?m highly skilled at that I also deem as a waste of my time or a negative behavior. But that doesn?t diminish my skill in the area.

Let?s go anyway:


Writing in my head while I do other things. Picture: emails, events in my calendar, notes to myself, essays, Instagram captions, Facebook comments

Making eggs: poached, scrambled, soft boiled

Being persnickety about my coffee

Traveling???literally the act of getting myself from one place to another

Staying asleep, or staying in bed???for hours past when I hope to get up

Giving advice & reassuring my friends (but with gentle suggestions for improvements). I?ve learned from my therapist how to wait to be asked for feedback & how to do it carefully. Is that manipulative or mutually beneficial?

Doing things alone, in particular: traveling, eating in restaurants and cafes, going to museums

Overthinking. I overthink so much I can almost see the future because my brain is speeding through possible scenarios

Having the best of intentions???at work, on my projects, with people

Baking. I find it highly therapeutic & people always appreciate butter and sugar

Archiving???I document almost everything I do in photos & notes. Unfortunately, I don?t share them as often or as constructively / productively as I?d like

Feeling many nuanced feelings

Asking questions

Talking???to a group / crowd / audience

Teaching / presenting information

Picking my scabs & itching my rashes, making myself bleed

Throwing ideas and information into the world, like spaghetti on a wall, to see what sticks


Riding bicycles in cities

Having sex

Talking about art


Cleaning, but I am allergic to dust

Petting cats???I am allergic to dogs

Taking myself to the doctor

Paying off my credit card


Using spreadsheets

Being organized

Management & leadership



Imagining scenarios for my future

The end, I?m cold

PS???not sweating a lot

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I remembered some while I was walking:

Calculating time zones where other people are & whether they?re available for a call

Doing mental calculations (how long it takes to get somewhere, time required for a project at work, how much things cost, how many minutes or miles I have to go during a workout, how many calories in food?)


Fantasizing about my unrequited lovers becoming requited(?) aka envisioning how & when we finally kiss / have sex / fall in love

Imagining my future homes and routes with real and imagined partners

Paying attention to what children pay attention to that other adults ignore

Looking around at the world

Taking notes

Remembering things that I?ve written down or read (photographic memory)

Laughing out loud

Making witty comments

Having good intentions

Worrying about my intentions not being good enough

Thinking about what legacy I want to leave

Being fladaptable (flexible + adaptable, a word my college coach made up)

Falling into rhythms with other people / objects

Being technically proficient

Being effective & highly competent

Availing myself of other people?s offers (a drink, a meal, a place to stay, an event, an introduction, an opportunity)

Feeling at home in a new / unknown place quickly

Living out of a bag

Finding counter arguments

Seeing context

Telling backstory


Being willing to try

Katherine works remotely while she travels the world ? on the road since June 2014. If you liked this piece, please give it some *claps* below & share. Thank you!

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