Welcome to a brand new week with brand new opportunities to do more and be more.
In one of my posts a few weeks ago; ‘What does Opportunity Look Like’? I defined opportunity as being in God’s place, in God’s time, following God’s instructions to bring about God’s results. This post has continued to generate a lot of feedback from readers and listeners alike. One of the most popular questions in the feedback is; ‘How Do I recognise Opportunity?’
To be able to answer this question I need to tell you about my struggle this past week. Some one very dear and close to me had sent me an email informing me of an opportunity that had just presented for which she believes I should step up to. She followed the email with a telephone call to help me clarify and see why this is a very important step for me to take if I want to continue to do more and be more.
Initially, it all sounded very exciting and possible, and I gave my word that I would definitely give it enough thought and weigh my options. That excitement had lasted just till the end of the telephone conversation before the voices within me started to scream at me.
The first voice I heard was mine; defining opportunity as being in God’s place, in God’s time, following God’s instructions to obtain God’s results. Hearing my voice asking me to use this filter wasn’t bad because it helped me see that the answers to; ‘is this God’s place, time, instructions and will it bring forth godly results?’ all were in the affirmative.
I still couldn’t rise to challenge of the new move however, because of the other voices; the voice that told me I didn’t qualify was really loud; and I don’t blame it because some of the application questions were beyond me. The voice that told me this was going to end up as another unfinished project and of course the voice that itemised for me all the monetary implications and how I will not be able to meet them.
To cut a long story short by the third day, I was a mess! The mere thought of this opportunity caused me palpitations. Now if I felt this way, despite all that I know about opportunities, I can definitely imagine how my respondents felt when they asked; ‘How do I recognise Opportunity’?
To resolve my dilemma I followed the steps below, and I will like to recommend them to you as well.
1. Given the many voices that I could now hear in my head, I had to talk to someone who knew me enough to ascertain if they could see the move as an opportunity for me. The reason we should always look for other people we trust to bring clarity is because depending on the number of voices we hear, we can become too overwhelmed to think rationally. So I went to my own Accountability Partner to get her opinion.
2. Based on the feedback my friend gave me, the next thing I did was ask myself ‘what are the demands of this new move? Can I find the will, resource and way to meet them?
3. The next question I asked myself was; ‘what will be lost if I don’t step up and who might be adversely affected?’ Asking this question helped me clarify the issue of expectation. I needed to be sure that I was not going to be hurting another should I not take a step in this new direction.
4. On the flip side, I also had to ask myself ‘what are the gains and who beyond me might be positively affected?’ Another important one because from experience I am aware that most times the reason we don’t step up to opportunities is because we are unable to see what the likely gains are to us and those around us.
5. Next is; ‘can I sensibly defend not stepping up and out before those who count on me and before God? I know this opportunity is not the cure for HIV or Ebola but it is a solution to a problem regardless, so I had to be sure that I was willing to stand up and defend my reluctance in stepping up to the plate.
6. My next and very important question to ask was; ‘will this take me away from my charted path or does it fit in the picture?’ What this question highlights is the impact of this move on my already established journey towards destiny and dream land. Will taking this step disrupt what I am sure is my calling? Or will it enhance it?
7. Next is; ‘do I have some of the required skills to transact within this new move and what more learning do I require; will I be willing to acquire it?’
8. Last but not least of my questions was; ‘what is the worst that might happen should this not deliver on its promise?’
Upon asking these questions and answering them, I decided to put myself forward and see what happens. I am yet to receive feedback but at least I have satisfied my conscience, and I have put myself out to take advantage of the opportunity presented to me.
While conceding that we may never be able to tell 100% if what is presented to us is an opportunity or not; it is my contention that we if we ask these questions and take the time to answer them truthfully and objectively, we can step out and rely on faith to pull us through.
While trusting that it all goes well for you I am also assured that the worst that can happen is that it doesn’t deliver on its promise and if that happens we will learn something new in spotting opportunities.
All that said, it is my confidence that even if you are not convinced what you have before you is an opportunity and you decide to walk away, you will do so knowing that you did your due diligence.
Whichever way the pendulum swings for you; You will make it NeverTheLess.
I promise, you will.
Here is to your success
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