Finding Your SHAPE

During this quarantine, I decided to pick up a couple of books that I have added to my shelf in the past year or so; books you see repeatedly as a reminder that it’s one you really want to read. One of those books was JP Pokluda’s Welcome to Adulting.  

Non-biased plug: If you are or love a 20-something or 30-something, this is a really great practical resource to discuss finances, career, relationships, worry, and much more. Pokluda integrates into his writing wisdom from his own life and years of being a young adult pastor.

One of the most common topics in counseling is processing what a client is made for and how to figure out paths to pursue work or passions that align with each individual client. In the section on work, Pokluda quotes Rick Warren’s work related to identifying your calling in life using the acronym SHAPE as a guide to help discover unique calling.

Spiritual gifts or giftings: Consider for yourself what you are naturally wired like and consider what others have told you are gifted in.

Heart: what you care about or are passionate about. I often encourage my clients to take a journal or sheet of paper and write about different times in your life and things that they were passionate about (caveat: don’t try to make it fit into a specific job or calling). After they make this list, I encourage them to see if there are any themes.

Abilities: what you can do. We all have natural abilities and abilities we have worked on that influence us.

Personality: Our unique personalities can make us better suited for specific roles.

Experiences: We all have had good and bad experiences that influence our lives. Experiences can impact what we are passionate about, what we are good at, and what our personalities are like. They also impact how we relate to others.

As Pokluda concludes:

SHAPE tells you what you are naturally good at, what you want to do, what you are able to do, how you like to do it, and what you know a lot about. Put them together and find out where they intersect, and you’ll find something you were created to do.

Written By: Kim DeRamus Lareau