By Patricia Arawore
In helping you decide on which category to belong, I concluded the last edition by stressing the need to focus on your gifts and talents, and also the importance of developing them to the best of your ability, as every person has his specific requirements in order to attain the highest potential. I also emphasized that in order to reach your highest potential, you must operate within circumstances that are favourable to your specific needs.
I hope that this edition will sufficiently answer your questions and make it easier for you to decide on which category to belong. There are many things to look out for while you are trying to decide which of the four categories you fall into-the environment, space, pressure level, level of flexibility, and your own individual make-up. Are you a leader or a subordinate? What role are you best at? Begin by recalling those times of your life that you were at your peak performance and write out those things that stand out in your mind.
You might find out a common pattern in those experiences which you felt most alive.
To do this, ask yourself the following questions: Are you best at working alone or as a team? Do you like trying out new things? Do you prefer multiple tasks or a single task at a time? Do you readily accept peopleâ€˜s opinions or do you rely more on your own thoughts? Do you like the idea of having a boss or you resent authority figures? Do you prefer flexible hours or you feel more comfortable with a routine structure? Do you thrive under pressure or are you better in a calm atmosphere? Do you feel more energized outdoors or more comfortable indoors? Are you restless or easy-going? All these questions will help you to define who you are and where you belong, because when you work from within your optimum circumstances, you will eliminate every negative factor that might interrupt your sense of flow. Going against your inner person will cause you a lot of discomfort and eventually affect your productivity.
As a student of journalism and Mass Communication many years ago, I had the opportunity during my holidays to work with the Irish Press of Dublin, and some experiences will remain with me always. Brian was a very intelligent young reporter employed with the Irish Press. He was hardly at any editorial meeting. He would also never appear on a beat on time, to the great annoyance of our News Editor. But for every time he was not at the right place, he was at the wrong place, bringing to the Irish Press, the greatest scoop of the day, with a bill for his expenses to go with it.
To the Irish Press, his service was invaluable. But as Staff Reporter, he was a bad team player, almost a nuisance; breaking every rule in the book. After a few months, the frustrated News Editor advised Brian to resign and string for the Paper as a freelance journalist. Brian jumped at the idea and became one of the most respected reporters of his time, selling his articles and scoops, not just to the Irish Press, but all over the world. In other words, it is important for us to know our inner selves, and learn to tell ourselves the truth. As a freelance journalist, Brian was able to decide how best for him to apportion his time and talent for effective result.
When you know what is true about you, you can create situations that are optimum for your satisfaction and peak performance. From the reactions from some readers, it was clear to me that a lot of people do not trust their instincts.Â Â I believe that most people know what they want but are afraid to make mistakes. They tell themselves â€œWhat if plans do not work or my choices are wrong?â€
True, I certainly cannot fault anyone being apprehensive. What I do know though, is that in this changing world, the only thing you can rely on is yourself. Trust yourself, follow your heart, and take action even if such actions come with no guarantees. You must always keep fear far away from you. When you know your unique talents, abilities and true worth, you will see fear evaporate as quickly as it came. Your objective should not be about doing everything perfectly and avoiding mistakes. It should be about making the best choices from the clearest place you know, then backing that choice, and following it up to see where it takes you.
The story of a friend of mine is inspiring. Having been called to the Bar to practice as a lawyer, she took a job in one of the leading Law firms in Nigeria. But determined to take her destiny in her hands, she proceeded to acquire a skill in Floristry and Event Venue Decoration for six months. Today, she is one of the best and biggest in that sector. Needless to add that she has a tidy sum in the bank and a few investments as well. So, you see that with a strong desire and determination to succeed, everything is possible.