Are there things about you that work against you?
Do you want to be an engineer but hate mathematics?
Are you passionate about public speaking but hold yourself back because you find yourself tongue-tied whenever you have to face a crowd?
Do you wish your friends would give you a break because you are just being yourself and they keep complaining that you are too harsh? Let’s talk about what to do when ‘being yourself’ is causing you problems.
When I was younger, there was something my dad told me over and over until it became a part of me. In fact, he still says it till this day:
Your nurture and not your nature determines your destiny.
Let me explain it with a personal story. When I was in Secondary School, I did something that made me understand this quote perfectly. I was a science student who wanted to be an engineer just like my dad. There was only one little problem, Mathematics!!! I really wanted to pass it. I felt I was trying so hard, but somehow I just seemed to remain average. I could get an easy 90% in English or Biology, but I felt like a C in Mathematics could only come by prayer and fasting. I had to choose between my desire to become an engineer and the fact that mathematics wasn’t computing in my head. Luckily for me, one of our teachers said something to the class one day “If you want to pass a course, just call it your best course and you will pass it.” It didn’t make sense at the time. My favorite course was English because I found it so easy, then at a time it was Physics because I loved to discover how things worked, but Mathematics? No way! Anyway, I decided to try it. I started telling my friends Mathematics was my best course and something interesting happened. I realized that in order for it to be true, I needed to study it more. Usually, I would spend more time studying my favorite course before even touching others, so, reluctantly at first, I started studying Mathematics more and paying more attention to it. By the time I was in SS2, I had become so good at Mathematics and fallen so much in love with it that I chose Further Mathematics as an elective and everyone who has seen my A1 in SSCE Mathematics found it hard to believe that I once thought I was not cut out to pass Maths.
That experience taught me a valuable lesson:
You can excel at something you were once horrible at because all things are learnable.
Your nature refers to your natural instincts, your default behavior, things that you can do automatically and easily. While your nurture refers to the traits that you learn along the way either on purpose, by accident or because you were forced to. What I learned was that I did not have to be a victim of my own nature or a slave to my instincts. If you pick up your phone and look at it right now, I can guarantee that it is very different from the way it was when you bought it. Somethings changed -Maybe it’s the case, ringtone, display pictures, apps or wallpaper. If you will adjust and upgrade your phone to fit what you need, how much more important is it to adjust and upgrade your traits so they can work for you? They say a leopard never changes its spots, but you are human. Get ready to be the best you can be, and don’t let yourself hold you back. If you are a public speaker on the inside but scared of crowds on the outside, get some public speaking training. If you are too self-conscious to fulfill your dream of being a model, go and do some confidence building activities. If the fear of an aptitude test won’t let you apply for a job you really won't get a lesson teacher if you have to. A lot of people say they can’t be good at something because it is not in line with their passion. I say you don’t have to like something to be good at it. I
Imagine a man drowning; do you think he will say: “It’s okay for me to drown since I never liked swimming anyway”? No. He doesn’t care about liking swimming at that point, he just wants to live. Teach yourself to be good at the things you need to be good at. Love the things that you love being good at. When the two overlap, that’s bliss but in the meantime;
If your nature is standing between you and your desired future… Nurture You
If it is difficult… .Do It
If fear is holding you back… Overcome It
Changing our attitudes, learning new skills and overcoming our fears can be an uphill task, but in life we can only choose between excuses and results, we cannot have both. Don’t let your nature stand in your way… UPGRADE YOU