The Power of Being You!!
In the latter part of 2020 - 2021, I experienced severe burnout. The world was moving to the internet in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic and new ideas were popping out everywhere.
I didn't want to be left out so I got a truckload of courses, classes and seminars. I wanted to be part of the new economic wave. I paid for so many courses on different skills that I couldn't keep up with. In the end, I was confused, exhausted and almost depressed.
I didn't even know what to do or which direction to take. I thought of going into web design or entrepreneurship because everyone was doing it. But after going through a year of disillusionment and confusion, I realized that I couldn't continue like that.
I had to let go of trying to do things because the people around me were doing it. I practically wasted a year and didn't achieve anything concrete because I was trying to be everywhere.
It's so easy to get caught up in what's happening around us that we forget our individuality. We see that the people around us seem to be doing well in a particular path and we try to live their lives which always ends up in tears.
We go on LinkedIn and Instagram and see "our mates" doing things in the world and we feel like we are wasting our lives.
We read a star-studded profile like this: Michael Okpara, 21 year old tech genius with three Masters degrees from Yale, Harvard and Oxford. Runs the fastest growing tech industry in Nigeria.
The conversations we begin to have with ourselves goes something like this: "Chai. Just look at my life. This guy is five years younger than I am and look at what he's achieved. What am I doing with myself sef?"
We get a depressive episode that lasts for weeks. We vow never to visit LinkedIn again but in five minutes we're back there, scrolling through people's profiles and giving ourselves mini heart attacks.
Sometimes, we think that doing this will motivate us to do better at our jobs and strive to achieve our dreams but it doesn't.
Do you ever feel energized after scrolling through your Instagram feed or scrolling through LinkedIn profiles? No! You feel sad, drained and inadequate.
We stop focusing on our personal growth and your dreams and begin to fantasize how wonderful it would be to live another person's life. The cycle goes on and on until we completely lose ourselves.
But this cycle has to end. Focusing on other people's lives blinds you from seeing your strengths and the resources you have at your disposal.
It makes you doubt yourself and forget the things you have accomplished. It erodes your confidence and prevents you from maximizing your potential.
Most of us haven't even scratched the surface of our God-given potential because we're neck-deep in other people's lives.
Strive to be you and no one else. You have gifts, talents and abilities that will bring God glory and take you to the presence of kings. But you can only discover what God has placed in you by focusing on you.
I don't mean becoming self-absorbed. I mean spending time with God and asking Him to open your eyes to see and wisdom to utilize the resources He has placed in you. And when He tells you to do certain things, believe that He has equipped you to do them.
You are special and different. No one else has your experiences, strengths, weaknesses, abilities and gifts. These are the things that make each of us special.
So get your eyes off other people and focus on your growth. Give the next 350 days to discovering who you are. Your life is a beautiful adventure so trust God, trust the process and watch yourself become a sign and a wonder like my father Apostle Joshua Selman would say.