I believe that God has given us the most valuable tools for exponential growth. Still, these are often wrapped up in limiting beliefs which make accessing them nearly impossible. It is only through the removal of wrong mindsets that we can tap into our superpower and soar. As an interior designer, using my creativity is essential, but I have also found that my gifts help me to navigate and overcome challenges.
I was coming to the end of my maternity leave, and it was time to return to work. At the time, I worked for a pharmaceutical company as a Medical Representative. I disliked most of what came with the role, but it paid well. My employers were unwilling to give me suitable hours, and I just happened to be reading a book by Elisabeth Elliot when the rejection email arrived. My husband's response to my disappointment was to do what I was good at. I did not know what I was good at, I had no idea of gifts or talents. But the portion of the book I was reading described one's gift as something you did effortlessly, yet, other people thought it was a big deal. For me, that was interior design. Friends loved my home and regularly asked me to design their spaces for them. So I enrolled on a couple of interior design courses and set up a residential design firm. Not long afterwards, we made the gutsy decision to emigrate to the United States. In the process, I purchased a baby and children's furniture shop. That was my introduction to craftsmanship and high-end furniture production.
Life was perfect. We embraced our new life, and the business was thriving. And then a storm came. First, it was the gentle breezes of rumours of a coming recession. That was soon followed by the actual collapsing of businesses. We could not buck the trend, and we lost everything. So we returned to the UK to weather the storm- and I was pregnant, too, with my fourth son.
Our perfect life continued to crumble all around us. I called out to God and could not believe challenges like these happened to Christians. I remember going from one church to the other as I sought the right prayer or the right 'word' that will bring the adversity to a halt, or at least help us make sense of it. Some pastors told us it was an attack. Others said it was just life happening. Funny enough, the second explanation sat well with me. By now, I had become so entrenched in the world of business that I couldn't sit twiddling my thumbs, waiting for the storm to pass.
I noticed that the UK market had a gap for luxury baby goods and decided to introduce high-end furniture. I faced several obstacles as you can imagine, as I had no capital. I couldn't even afford a web designer and taught myself to design one. Bear in mind that this was at a time when website building really was rocket science.
I learned that what I lacked in funds, I could make up for in sweat. I also gained a lot of confidence from hearing the Holy Spirit as He ordered my steps. Once, I read a book titled From 'Prison to Praise' by Merlin Carothers. That was a life-changing book. I learned about the power of giving God thanks in all things. It taught me that my life wasn't spiralling out of control as it appeared; instead, my life was in the palm of God's hand, and He directed the course it would take.
In 2014 I was gifted with the word 'authenticity'. I understood that God wanted me to live my life as me, not as a version I thought others preferred. Running a high-end business in the UK placed most of my clients as caucasian. I felt I needed to be less visible as a British-born, Nigerian-raised woman. I could see why the authenticity journey was required. The more I dug deep to discover my authentic self, the more I unearthed layers of wrong beliefs hiding my gift. The Lord showed me how to remove these beliefs, most of which were lies that I had come to adopt as truth. These distortions come from culture, society, life's experiences and sometimes, religion. As I unearthed these mindsets, I found my path becoming clearer and easier to travel. I have worked with many women in a mentorship capacity and found limiting mindsets to be a primary cause of stagnancy.
I recognise that I have been called to help women tap into their natural gifts by helping them remove barriers. Many have found the Living Inside Out podcast an invaluable resource for identifying and removing limiting beliefs.
Recently, I completed a coaching course in support of a new career which I am growing alongside my baby furniture company based in Chelsea, London. Growing my furniture company has given me the tools needed to teach others how to navigate their own paths.
I believe we have all been gifted with a unique ability. Our gifts not only help us navigate the difficulties of life, but it also helps us to fulfil our purpose on earth. We don't need to look outside for solutions to our challenges, God has placed all we need inside us. We simply need to live from the inside out.
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