Just before I was through with College, there was a job opening. It turned out that an alumni had left his position as an IT Consultant where he had done a tremendous job. The organization was looking for someone of the same caliber and so they requested my institution.
Without even thinking, the head of IT knew my prowess and concluded that I fit the bill. So off I went for my first ever interview before I finished college! How many times do you get that lucky? Did I get the job after being given that through pass by my teachers? No I did not. Why?
The organization asked me if I could do something…If actually I was conversant with a particular application…and I was frank enough to tell them, “No”.
Needless to say, whatever it is that they were so particular about became obsolete two years later…but I am not laughing because I lost out on an opportunity that day. The question to ask however would be:
Before we can answer it, let’s do a recap here. We are talking about how to unearth potential. Everybody born of a woman has potential in them, there is no doubt about it. Not everyone fulfills their potential at death. Not everyone at the moment is doing what will unearth their potential. A great number of people are engaged in drab activities as long as they put food on the table and they pay rent. The cycle continues and is passed on to the next generation faithfully. Those are sad facts, but they are true.
A sad story is told of a soldier who was captured behind enemy lines. The commander of the victorious army gave this solider two options for his fate. Option one was to face a firing squad that would execute him at dawn. Option two was to go through a door labeled “Unimaginable horrors”.
The soldier selected option one and was promptly executed at dawn the following day. Then the soldiers turned to their Army commander and asked him, “Sir, what’s on the other side of that door labeled ‘unimaginable horrors’?”. The commander did not look up from his table as he answered, “Freedom”.
We all want to know before we do. It reminds me of my early years of seeking my life purpose. All I could do was pray to God in the evening, morning and noon, “Lord show me my destiny, and when you do, I will put my hands on it and never look back”
The answer never came. I have come to realize one thing, that potential never is fully and intimately known at first before it is exploited. I also realized that God never gives you the whole picture before you get started. He gives you a hint. A skill here, a skill there. A strength here, a strength there. A value here, a value there. Working with and on what you have is what opens the door for potential to be unleashed.
Potential unravels as you work on it with the scantest detail of data that you have. Probably that is why the Wright Brothers were able to invent flight and a whole fully funded project failed…probably.
If you are going to unearth your potential, you have to learn to say “Yes” and move on with what you have at hand. Waiting for the full package of details is not how you unearth potential. Granted, many people want an already prepared package.
Employers want an experienced employee (and most of them don’t want to nurture them)
It is our nature to seek and live in safety and comfort and certainty. However, that should be as a result of living on the edge. If we lead a life where we are living at the center of the circle and not on the edge of it, it is very difficult to know the stuff that we are made up off. We are not being pushed…and being pushed is what unearths potential. We are not being sifted. Being sifted is what removes the dross and reveals the hidden potential. We are not being stretched. Being stretched is what shows us what we are capable of.
If we continue being concerned with how good we should look, and how immune we should be to failure, we will remain paralyzed. And ultimately, we will not fulfill our potential. In order to unearth our potential, we have to learn to live on the edge, that is where we are fully alive and alert. Let’s live on the edge!