This is how to shape your future based on your strengths

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Written by Joe Ellison
Looking to make a mark in industry? These tips, tricks and lesser known hints could help nudge you towards greatness.
Ever get the feeling you're in the wrong career? Does the childhood promise you made to yourself of being a video game tester by day and world class DJ by night feel further away than ever?
Well, there's still time to find out a) where your strengths lie, and b) how to make the most of them. Read on for some advice that could change your life profoundly.

1. Read something new every day

Not only does learning something new make you feel good, activating the novelty centre of the brain, but the dopamine rush motivates you to act on your new information. So challenge yourself to read something new every day, whether that’s a long read in The New Yorker or an inspiring extract from an autobiography that helps spark your big idea.

2. Get a project funded

From little acorns big oaks grow. Or Apples, if you're Steve Jobs. No matter how you look at it, though, every great business started with one single idea, and thanks to the likes of Gofundme and Kickstarter, it’s easier than ever to realise your dream project and connect with people who share your passion points. Take the leap today.

3. Tap into your self-awareness

During an interview with a leading business website last year, Red Bull's Global Talent Management Head Adam Yearsley said that self-awareness can work like a mirror. "If you care how you present yourself to the world, self-awareness can be a very useful tool, as it will determine your success in working with people in any company and in any role," he explained. "If people are able to be more self-aware of their strengths, limitations and shortcomings by getting feedback, they are able to be more aware of how others see them."

4. Think like an elite athlete

An image of the Red Bull Wingfinder assessment tool
Red Bull Wingfinder matches your strengths to those of elite athletes
Decision making, creativity, drive, leadership – you may have more strengths in common with the world’s top sports stars than you think. Thanks to Red Bull Wingfinder, a free interactive assessment tool highlighting your strengths and how to find them, you can see how your personality traits match with many of Red Bull's athletes and musicians. You'll also receive a full report and tailored coaching plan. Seriously, try it and see.

5. Meditate

In 2005, a team of leading neuroscientists carried out a study that found regular meditation could increase the brain's cortical thickness, strengthening regions related to cognitive and emotional processing. The benefits of meditation have long been found to help cope with stress and boost your mood, and it's a practice many titans of industry swear by.

6. Talk to yourself

Ever dreamed of one day delivering a TED Talk? Before you get designs on speaking in front of millions however, start with the smallest audience possible – yourself. Studies have shown that explaining things to yourself can be a profound mechanism for your brain to soak up information, allowing you to build expertise. You'd be in good company, too. Famously not unintelligent man Albert Einstein would regularly talk to himself in a bid to better retain facts.

7. Know your worth

According to research by a leading US job website, not negotiating a salary could cost you $1,000,000 over time. Women in particular are far less likely to ask for a raise, with a poll in Elle Magazine finding that 53 percent of females had never asked for a raise, compared with 40 percent of men. Keeping an eye on workplace reviews websites, such as Glassdoor, could give you a ballpark figure of what you should be earning at a future employer. Nobody is going to negotiate a salary for you, so do your homework.