VACATING THE COMFORT ZONE.
I decided to go along with my friend on her trip to the salon to get her hair fixed. Since I hadn’t been to that salon before, my interest and curiosity were aroused as I was eager to observe what was going on in this new environment.
I went down to the salon’s shop where they sold different kinds of hair products and all kinds of wigs and weaves you could imagine. In curiosity, I asked one of the shop attendants quite a number of questions about a particular weave. Out of surprise at my seeming lack of knowledge about an area every normal girl should know about, she exclaimed in Twi, “Enti Boatemaa, wote Ghana ha? ” meaning “So Boatemaa, are you really living in Ghana?” As funny as that question was, it brought some interesting lessons to mind I would like to share with you today….
Firstly, I was reminded of the word IGNORANCE. Even though I may not really be interested in some hairstyles or even how they are done, it does not mean I should not be well informed about them. Since hair issues may not be a topic of much interest to many people, let’s link this lesson to our own lives and country. Your lack of interest in an area does not give much basis for not having at least a little insight into it.
If Adjoa is interested in Marketing, it does not mean there is no need for her to have a little basic knowledge in Mathematics (in order to be able to calculate her costs) or other subjects (in order to have in – depth conversations with potential customers). This reminds me of the need for our country to have a better educational system. ..a more practical one at that….that blends different disciplines and also does not depend on just one mode of promoting students to the next level of education. We need to read wide and think wide.
Before we blame the educational system for our lack of knowledge however, why don’t we take it upon ourselves and make good use of the few resources at our disposal so we can improve and broaden our scope of knowledge?
Not following the crowd is one great lesson I was reminded of from the simple question the lady asked me. Are we afraid to be different? If someone were to comment negatively on your desire to be the difference, to do things the right way, will that douse your fire? We do not always have to fit in. Not every environment or way of life should make us feel comfortable. At times, we need to leave our zone of comfort in order to be who GOD has called us to be. So in Ghana for example, we shouldn’t be saying “Everybody is doing it so it’s okay…After all what?” Rather, we should be asking ourselves “What can I do to make my Ghana a better place?”
I have learnt that fear often prevents us from venturing outside the box. On more than one occasion, I have been afraid to try something new because I am so used to the normal. Unfortunately however, that kind of thinking could lead me to a point of stagnation when everyone else is moving forward.
In trying new things, I am by no means saying that we should compromise on our values. Rather, I am saying we should open up more to embracing newness, like trying that new dish, choosing that course everyone is shying away from or just visiting a group of people to understand what guides their decisions and way of life. I’d like to leave you with this question…”Enti m’adamfo, wote Ghana ha? “For my friends who couldn’t really read the Twi, I’m simply asking..”So my friend, are you really living in Ghana? ”
If your answer is yes, then it is time to let Ghana feel your presence. Let your actions and passion count. Shift out of the normal…the comfort zone…into the extraordinary.