Before you step out | © Fola Daniel Adelesi

We often talk to ourselves about taking bold steps and stepping out confidently but we hardly talk about stepping out for ourselves and not for others. Consequently, there are too many people out there who are stepping, not for what they believe in but, for the things other people believe in and think they should be doing.

When you make the decision to step out and do something, it is very important you ensure you are stepping out for the right reasons. If you don’t check what you are doing very well, you could be stepping out for all the wrong reasons.

So you need to ask yourself questions. Why am I stepping out now? What is the intention for stepping out? How did I arrive at this conclusion to step out for this thing that is making me step out? Think about the store you want to open or the business you are going to start. Are you starting that business because people think it’s a business you will succeed at? Are you going to open that store because you sold a few items and someone says, ‘maybe you should have a store?’ Their suggestions or promptings may not be wrong but the point is for you to be sure that’s what you should be doing. Don’t just do something because someone feels you will do well at it.

I remember a training session we had recently. We talked about managing personality types and after my session, I asked all the participants to identify their personalities. Someone in the room suggested we allow others identify their personalities for them. I immediately pointed out it may not be accurate. My partner and I who were handling the training were convinced that the best way to identify your personality is a self-assessment and not the assessment done by someone else because it may not be accurate. It turns out we were very correct before the end of the session.

Just before we asked people to read out their personality types, this participant tried to determine another person’s personality based on what he saw on the outside. The other person didn’t agree with his judgment at all. Why is this important to you? I shared that experience to remind you of how people will try to fix you into different boxes in their minds and once you don’t fit into those mind boxes of theirs, they think you are not doing what you should be doing. They may assume you don’t even know what you are supposed to be doing and they will want to help you out by forcing you into something they think you should be doing.

You are the one who knows yourself so well. I think other people may know you well. There may be other people who know or have seen some potentials in you that you haven’t even seen. People may see or understand a skill that you need and you don’t even know about that. When that happens, it is not their duty to force you to step out and operate with that ‘needed skill.’ Their duty is to counsel or try to convince you of the need to work with that skill or try something in a direction. At the end of the day, the decision is yours to make.

Please think again before you step out for anything. Whatever it is and no matter how small or big, you should be stepping out for something that you really want to do and that you know you can do. You should not be stepping out for what others think you should do which will not add any value to you or give you your desired satisfaction in life.

You have only one life. Be careful how you live it – for others’ selfish desires and myopic views or for who you were truly born to become.   


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