A mind is like a parachute, it doesn’t work unless it’s open – Frank Zappa
I’ve always been a ‘stick to the winning formula’ kind of person. I mean, why change a method that works?! So I’ve taken the same routes to work, had the same friends, and literally built a tent in my comfort zone and stayed there. Once in a while, I explore, then jump right back into the zone. Of course, that influenced my career choices. It was either law or the media or I’m uninterested.
Then, I found myself in banking. From the word go, I told myself ‘I can’t stay here, this isn’t my passion’. Imagine my dismay when all my alternatives – getting a Masters, DV lottery (oh yes I applied!) and even getting an LLB didn’t work out. I kept counting my days and the days kept growing longer. So, I began to pay attention. Today, I’m not head over heels with banking, but I didn’t fail at it like I thought I would. I may try a different path later on, but this experience exemplified a popular Yoruba* saying; Ona kan o woja**.
There’s a lot of talk about finding your passion; some say the path to ‘true success’ is finding your passion and living it. That notion is limiting because your passion is more of who you are than what you do. In essence, true success lies in the energy and drive you bring to whatever it is you do. Scripture says, ‘Whatsoever your hand findeth to do, do it well’. Pour 110% of yourself into anything you do, passion or not and you will be amazed at the results.
It’s important to focus on your strengths and maximise them but you must realise that you have strengths you haven’t even discovered and you are capable of much more than you dare give yourself credit for. By all means, find your passion, but while at it, do not make the mistake of believing there’s only one route to your destination. For there are several, if you will be patient and open minded enough to discover them. Truth is, many will go to the grave without discovering their passion but that’s nothing compared to leaving this world without an enduring legacy.
*tribe in South West Nigeria
**there are several routes into the marketplace (of life)