Today I was labeled as a "Navigator," as opposed to a "Problem Solver."
A navigator is the person on board a ship or aircraft responsible for its navigation. The navigator's primary responsibility is to be aware of ship or aircraft position at all times. Responsibilities include planning the journey, advising the Captain or aircraft Commander of estimated timing to destinations while en route, and ensuring hazards are avoided.
I have always considered myself a problem solver, but when I heard the "Navigator" described, it fit perfectly. I can adapt my decision-making process to the events going on around me - speed up for the rapids, drift along the calm, deep water, and avoid crashing on the rocks or running aground on sand bars. When someone tries to hurry or bully me, I sometimes fear I will capsize, and sometimes go into panic mode. But usually, I stay the course, and everything goes OK.
This new label has been validating for me. It reminds me of my affinity for Mountain Goats (to use another metaphor for navigating hazards), and a recent link that Lakshmi sent me about the North Star.
Now back to our regularly scheduled hiatus.