I recently attended a graduation dinner to celebrate the outstanding achievement of a young lady who graduated from a Law faculty with a first class and not only that, she also graduated as the best graduating student in the entire school.
This 21 year old young woman and I met a few years ago when she invited me to speak at a leadership conference she had organised for the benefit of the students. My admiration towards her was unequivocal.
A lot of young women will look at her today and imagine that things may have come “easy’ for this 1st class graduate and yes, the opportunity for this lady to attend school is “easy’ because her parents worked to afford this, however, achieving this level of intelligence was all down to this young woman.
Building intellectual capacity does not come easy but it is not impossible. As I listened to many goodwill messages from her former classmates, who also share same class of degree, her tutors, her counsellors and then her family, I took a few notes that I hope will help someone who will read this article.
Create or Develop a Routine
Habits are formed over time. Prioritize what you spend time doing but most especially, give more time to habits that will build your intelligence. Create a schedule that is as balanced as possible, give room to develop areas that you find need more academic attention.
Expand your Mind
Give your brain and mind the opportunity to read over and beyond scope to gain more insights, perspectives, opinions and counter opinions. Let your mind be open to dig deeper into subjects and conversations to allow it increase it’s level of understanding.
Be deliberate and intentional about your circle of influence
The quote that says ‘Iron sharpens iron”, goes both ways. You are exposed to become who you let be your standard. I used the word ‘exposed’ because, it is a decision. You may be exposed to something negative but choose or decide not to become it, or you may be exposed to something really intelligent and also decide not to become it. Be surrounded by intelligence and choose or decide to increase your capacity for intellectual wisdom.
Be inquisitive- No question is a stupid question
Try not to settle for mundane answers or take theories as is. You can challenge the intellectual status quo and increase the thought process that lies behind a topic or teaching. Read more and wide to gain insights and get your mind to process situations and then develop questions that can increase your learning.
Develop leadership and life skills
Become an all rounded human being by not only becoming intellectually capable, but also be willing to develop your leadership capacity and potential. Find and be a part of extra curricular activities that will develop your leadership skills. The world needs you to be everything you are created to be so that people can benefit.
Watch our documentary on the challenges young women face in leadership on youtube.