Unlocking opportunities 4237 miles away
We are surrounded by opportunities, however every day most of us let these pass us by. This can be because we don’t appreciate their possible benefit, are afraid of the uncertainty they bring or don’t take advantage of them as on the surface we see them as nothing more than a problem. This is evident both in daily living and in business.
Six months ago I was presented with what I saw as one very large problem. My husband returned from work one evening with the news that he was being posted to Kenya for a period of six months. Immediately my mind whirled into action with all the problems this presented: How could we both maintain our careers? How could we afford to move? How would we find somewhere to live? Is Kenya safe? Would the internet be good enough for work?
Why was I so quick to jump on the negativities that such an opportunity could bring? This is because with opportunity comes uncertainty, and more often than not uncertainty is regarded as negative and threatening, especially in this fast paced and evolving era in which we live. It is often much easier to come up with problems than focus on possible benefits and solutions.
But there is a need to change this inherent belief as uncertainty has the potential to drive positivity by pushing us outside of our comfort zones and encouraging us to positively disrupt our approach and strive for new goals. Well this is certainly what happened to me as I have just returned from six months living and working in Nairobi, Kenya.
Often the most important thing is to take that initial step in deciding to follow an opportunity, then all those problems that first come to mind become smaller hurdles to work through in order to reach your goal. So we took that step, we made the decision to move to Kenya and then worked through all the hurdles in order to make it a success: Incite allowed me to stretch the boundaries of remote working, we rented out our flat in London, we found a lovely little cottage in in a safe suburb of Nairobi and despite my new office being 80% smaller with a corrugated roof, Nairobi’s internet connection never wavered.
We often find one opportunity stems from another and again this was certainly the case for me. Workwise I found that the three hour time difference gave our team new scope to further share and collaborate on tasks and it also allowed me more time to reflect and improve on the quality of my work. Outside of work I grabbed all other opportunities with open arms. From the daily hustle and bustle of Nairobi to weekend explorations to game parks and reserves, I was able to fully immerse myself in a completely different culture and learn new skills such as photography (to which I came rather addicted!).
On reflection, I am so glad I took that first big step, pushed myself outside of my comfort zone and followed this opportunity. I learnt a lot about myself and how I have the ability to adapt to a new way of living and draw benefits from this moving forward. Yes, sometimes it doesn’t always go to plan and some hurdles are too high to surmount, but at least you can be confident that you haven’t missed out on an opportunity that could be valuable in helping you or your brand to grow.
All photos taken by Sarah.