One day, while driving to work, I saw a space of land about to undergo development. On the contractor’s project notification board was written, ‘Breaking new grounds’. The slogan, if I may call it so, sent a great message down my spines because I saw beyond a building engineer asking the builders to dig a foundation meant for an edifice. In my thought pattern, I could imagine the type of mentality possessed by the contractor, and his ability to see beyond a physical construction. In the mindset of the engineer, as I empathically positioned myself, I saw the sprouting of new businesses, employment opportunities, growth and development, etc. I concluded that it takes someone that has a futuristic attitude to see beyond the immediate; it takes someone who is a visionary to look beyond what people with ordinary eyes can’t see.
What does it mean to break a new ground? Sitting on top of a double Decker bus near the Olympic Stadium in Stratford, London; for the first time, I saw an uncovered foundation of a massive building about to be developed. After digging the ground, the engineers, in orderly manner, knocked heavy cylindrical rods into the ground; each rod was very massive. To them, breaking a new ground does not only entail digging the ground but also piercing it with things that will make the building reliable and dependable. As someone that has lived a few years on earth, I have realised that ground breakers either put something into the ground or get something out. When the farmer breaks a ground, he puts seeds inside; after a while, he also breaks it to get his harvest. When the oil explorer breaks a new ground, his intention is to find the black gold; petroleum. When an entrepreneur breaks a new ground, his motive is to make profits. Efforts will become futile if there is no return on investment. The purpose of every genuine ground breaker is to create values, discover values, or add values. Everyone who thinks formidably acts responsibly; ground breakers are people with great characters.
My simplest definition of breaking new grounds is the ability to create new opportunities with respect to your own identity. What do I mean by your own identity? Your identity is what you’re cut out for. Your identity is your creative talent; what you know how to do best. You can only innovate what you know best; if you aren’t good in it, you will get lost in the basics. How can you misunderstand the basics, but yet call it a career, profession or talent? In most talent shows especially singing, I sometimes feel like getting into the television screen to throw some people out of the stage because even with my croaky voice, I can do better than some of them. Sometimes, I do blame their families and friends for ever allowing them go on air to embarrass them. It is impossible to break a new ground where you haven’t been broken. Those who are broken in certain skills have the depth consciousness of those skills. Those who are broken in certain talents have the depth consciousness of those talents. You can’t chart a new course in something that you’re cursed. Your blessing is in your originality; your originality is in your genuineness; your genuineness is in your true gift and talent. If you want to break a new ground, focus on who you truly are; be yourself. Your true image is what becomes fruitful; anything else is a waste of time.
How can you break a new ground?
1. Discover who you are; stop being a duplicate of someone else. You can’t be a Beyounce if you were made to be Alice. Stop dreaming of becoming Usain Bolt when you can’t do a 10 metre race.
I remember one day when two of my friends invited me to join them in a race; I still regret ever wearing that oversized pair of shoes. We weren’t a quarter close to the ‘to’, let alone the ‘fro’; when I was panting like a trouble antelope that saw a hungry lion. When they saw my frustration, they thought they could motivate me; they said, ‘Common Ken, you can do it’. In my mind, I said, ‘Do what? This man you’re running with is at the edge of fainting; please leave me alone’. When I couldn’t take it anymore, I told them that we’ll meet at home. Running has never been my passion and will never be my passion; no amount of motivation can make it be; it’s needless making a fool of myself.
Do you know that a lot of people dabble into trouble by doing what they’re not meant for? Do you know that a lot of people even dabble into double trouble by trying to break new grounds in things that they don’t have a clue? On the long run, the grounds resist them because they weren’t meant to be there. To break a new ground, be who you were made to be.
2. Understand your purpose; your purpose is your identity. Listen; talent is raw, but skill is refined. If you wear raw gold, people will mock you. To succeed in your talent, you must develop the skills that come with your talent; if you don’t, you will, with your indifferent attitude place a limitation on yourself. If your skill requires excellent communication, and you’re someone that says, ‘I wented there, instead of, I went there’, do something about your deficiencies’. Remember, New York slangs are not accepted where life really matters; the London cockney accent can’t be condoned when those who rule this world gather; the Nigerian pidgin English can’t be tolerated when the world’s top entrepreneurs meet to discuss vital issues. Dig into the relevant skills that will make you stand out in your relevant call. Apart from acquiring the right skills, you need the relevant information; and please, don’t just be informed, be updated. Many computer software receive regular updates because of the high level of technological competition within the industry. If software is updated, why can’t you do the same? Anyone at the cutting edge of understanding never gets embarrassed when duty calls. People with first class understanding are always itching for opportunities to display their talents, while those deformed, misinformed or under-informed enjoy buying time. Skills, information and updates help you understand your purpose.
3. Don’t sleep or rest on just knowing the basics; be creative; be innovative. Creativity and innovation are the keys to breaking new grounds. People, who are creative and innovative, are die hard strategists and tacticians. Developing a new concept requires creativity and innovation. Whether in talent, gift, business, career or profession; those who break new grounds stand out of the crowd. To break new grounds, you must be creative in your thinking; to break new grounds, you must embrace creative imagination. You don’t need to be the Late Steve Jobs to do it; do it in your own style and uniqueness. There is something that you can do better than anyone; yes, I mean better than anyone. Search for it; live for it; do it now!