Spider's Web with CHEELA CHILALA
IN MID-2015 my family and I moved from a rented house in Villa Wanga, one of the quiet and good neighbourhoods of Lusaka to our own house in one of the Meanwood areas of Lusaka.
In the months leading up to the change of residence, however, the government started tarring the main road in Villa Wanga.
The development made the decision to move to our house a little more challenging. The tarring of the road meant, for instance, that the drive to our home would be a lot smoother.
By contrast, the roads in the Meanwood area where we were building our house were in bad shape – it was a new area, with lots of houses still being built, fed by bumpy gravel roads which become a hazard during the rainy season. The temptation to remain on in the rented house was real.
In addition, the funds for building ran out. The magnitude of the building project brought its own challenges: the cost of building was high, much higher than anticipated.
The bill of quantities was now inaccurate because it had been done several years earlier and the cost of building materials had since risen exponentially.
Additionally, we were running out of time because I had already indicated to the landlord that we would be moving out of the house at the end of the rainy season. What to do now?
After weighing the situation, though, we decided as a family that it was still better to move into our own house.
So I got a loan and we were able to do what was needed to make our house habitable. We were thus able to beat the deadline we gave ourselves and moved into our own house.
This experience taught me that if we are to make progress in life, we need to be ready to get out of our comfort zone.
There will always be the temptation to remain in the comfort zone, and indeed where you are at the moment might appear more comfortable than where you need to be to make progress in your life.
A smooth tarred road is better than a bumpy one, but at the end of the day, the bumpy road leads to my own house while the tarred one leads to a rented house.
My own house provides a sense of security and peace that the rented one does not. It also offers an opportunity to save money and use it in other needy areas.
The rented house was more complete than mine: all the rooms were tiled, while some of the rooms in my house were not.
The rented house had a good drainage system while our house did not because the council had not yet done anything about the drainage in the area.
At the end of the day, however, it is better to live in a not-so-complete house that you actually own than a post rented house.
Our lives are characterised by what I call moments of destiny: those critical times of our lives when we need to make major decisions and take major steps, those moments which, if seized, change the course of our lives.
It is not always easy to make the right decisions when you are in a comfort zone, when it would appear that things are “smooth” where you are and “bumpy” where you want or need to be.
However, you cannot seize your moments of destiny unless you are willing and ready to abandon your comfort zone.
You cannot fulfil your dreams unless you are ready to sacrifice. The road to your destiny is a bumpy one. The smooth road will rob you of your destiny.