So today is a bit of a different day. Today I got unceremoniously shoved outside of my comfort zone. I found I was uncomfortable. Fancy that. I also found that while I learned a good amount over the first 3 days of pre-dep, I learned at a much faster rate when I was fully standing outside of my comfort zone than when I was just peeking my toes out now and then. This is cool. This is what I was thinking about when I braced myself for pre-dep, this transformational learning zone that sucks and makes me frustrated and turns my mind into a blank wall that is seemly impenetrable, yet is an incredible opportunity. You get through/over/under/flip this wall eventually. Then the jaw drops and the eyes glaze over as your perceptions warp. Cool dude.
In order to press your comfort a bit, push your buttons so to speak, I’ve recorded a myriad of questions we’ve tossed around and toiled over during the past few days, and I challenge you to answer one, two, a few. Be courageous, step into your learning.
Why the heck do we work in Africa?
Which is the goal, success or learning?
What are your assumptions about the working styles of people: detail-oriented, relationship-building, visionary, and strategic manipulation?
How do we harness positive deviance?
How can learning be considered either the tradeoff of impact or the path to impact?
What do you do when you reach into your problem-solving toolbox and it’s empty?
What does vulnerability feel like?
Is being uncomfortable mutually exclusive with enjoying yourself?
What is the inherent merit of increasing women’s roles in decision-making in developing countries?
Ask me a question in return. Keep me uncomfortable and learning. Complacency isn’t worth it.