Top 3 Ways to Honor Your Mom Through HER Strengths

StrengthsFinder Mother's Day

My mom never did take the StrengthsFinder assessment. By the time I had nerd-ed out over its power and effectiveness, she was too sick to sit through it. So, I often find myself daydreaming about what was distinct and strongest about her, and how that might have translated to her unique set of Top 5 Strengths.

Quite often on Mother’s Day, I would write her a note that thanked her for the myriad ways she had blessed and spoiled and supported me. At the top of the list was always her seemingly endless ability and inclination to serve, without grumbling or looking for the spotlight. Actually, she acted quite the opposite—with what seemed like true energy and joy from being able to serve others.

Me being one of them.

There is a Proverb that records the sayings of a mother to her son who had become king. In it, she emphasizes what she sees as the characteristics of a wife with noble character. This mother’s description reaches far beyond the gender role silos of her time, and speaks to true uniqueness of talent, shrewdness and creativity in business, and steadfastness in work ethic with her kids and family.

When I think of my mom’s most natural Talents, this ancient mother’s words are what come to mind.

StrengthsFinder mom and grandma

Today, as we enter into Mother’s Day weekend, I ask you to honor your mom through the things that are strongest about her — her natural talents and Strengths. She does not have to have taken the StrengthsFinder assessment either {though that sure would be easier!}.

Her signs of talent are all around you.

They are the things she does that seem to give her a buzz, that she could do over and over, that she is praised for, that you find her smiling a bit extra for, that she does without thinking. Since you have lived with her, they might even manifest as frustrating quirks to you. As my sister once said in the frustration of adolescent-to-mother relationship, “You are so difficult to work with!” But really, under that difficulty, there is almost always Talent, that is remarkably different than yours.

So, here are 3 ways that you can honor your mom this Mother’s Day, through her Strengths.


3 Ways to Honor Your Mom Through Her Strengths

#1 :: Call it Out

Whether you know her Top 5 Strengths or not, take the time to call out her Strengths to her this Mother’s Day. Whether you’d rather write it in a card or speak the words to her face, encourage her specifically.

Specificity is key.

When you say, “Thank you for everything you do for me,” it is better than not saying anything at all…. However, when you call out the specific details of how you see her Strength in your life, that is where the honor and power really come in.

So, instead, consider a format like this:

This past year when you {fill in the blank here}, I really saw how strong you are {in this specific way}.

It might sound something like:

This past year, when you took care of my kids on a whim, with very little notice or instruction, I really saw how flexible and willing you are to help care for our family. Thank you.


This past year, when you gave me the tough but wise advice about my job, I really saw how discerning and visionary you are. Thank you.


This past year, when you called me every day, just to listen to the ins and outs of my crazy world, I really saw how caring and family-focused you are. Thank you.

When you encourage your mom specifically, you will make her day.

StrengthsFinder Becky and kids

#2 :: Meet a Need

For this one, if you know her StrengthsFinder Top 5 Strengths or could guess what one or two may be, use the BRING IT | NEED IT tool {Free PDF download here!} to identify what some of her deepest psychological and emotional needs are.

Then, take a step to help fill one of those needs. {For more details about the hints that our Strengths give us about our needs, check out Step 7 from the 9 Steps to Life Change system}.

When you meet a specific need, it is like honor and encouragement with turbo power. She will feel doubly encouraged and inspired as you help “fill her bucket” with strengths-specific support.

For example…

  • If she has high Discipline Strength, and needs order and structure around her, consider giving her a new planner or volunteering to help organize a room in her home.
  • If she has high Empathy Strength, consider setting aside time to really ask her how she is doing and what she has been feeling lately…then sit in it without judgement or comment.
  • If she has high Woo talent, invite her in on a gathering of a bunch of YOUR friends and sit back to allow her the freedom to chat with them all.
  • If she has high Learner talent, consider signing up for a class together like cooking or an evening of painting and wine.

As you tailor your thoughtfulness to her needs, she will thrive and contribute even more to your relationship together.

Bring Need Ad Image

#3 :: Take an Extra Beat

This Mother’s Day {and the days and weeks ahead!}, when your mom does something that annoys you or frustrates you, take an extra beat before reacting or responding. Instead, hold back for a moment and ask yourself what Talent could underly that annoyance—assuming positive motives, what could be driving her behavior that might just be different from yours?

If she asks a lot of questions, maybe she has high Analytical or Context or Learner Strength.
If she cries…a lot…maybe she has high Empathy talent.
If she says she “doesn’t care” where you go for dinner…maybe she has high Adaptability talent.
If she changes the topic to avoid talking about something controversial…maybe she had high Harmony Strength.
If she often suggests something “better” than what you already have…maybe she has high Maximizer talent.
If she feels slow and over-protective…maybe she has Deliberative Strength.

As you pause to take this extra beat, you honor your mom and her talent…even when it feels buried or distant to you!

StrengthsFinder Tamar Becky

SO, this Mother’s Day {and beyond!} as you seek out that perfect gift or card or action this weekend, consider the power and beauty that come from her Strengths and the ways that you can let her know you support, honor, and appreciate that uniqueness in her.



Links & Resources from today

StrengthsFinder + Strengths Startup
Bring It | Need It FREE tool
Isogo TV Episode 10 | Signs of Talent
StrengthsFinder is Life Changing | Get Clear on your Needs {Step 7 of 9}
{9 Steps} to Life Change through your StrengthsFinder Top 5 Strengths

Bring Need Ad Image

StrengthsFinder LifeChange Checklist Ad Image


As always, one of the best places to join the Strengths conversation is over at our Facebook Group — Energy Up Frustration Down by Strengths. Join us as we all try to figure out just how to use our Strengths to impact the most important things around us—in our work and life.

If you’re thinking about the way a Strengths-perspective could impact your marriage or your family or you’re just not so sure about it all, reach out, and let’s connect about it. You can catch me at FacebookTwitter or Instagram, all at @isogostrong, or by this handy contact form.

Enjoy your day, and {be strong}!

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