5 Life Lessons that Could Shape Your Career ~ Looking Back to Move Forward

📣📣📣🙌🏽 DAY 21 of #300DaysofLearning Challenge 

Fletcher High School Career Day

🌟 Fletcher High School Career Day

I learnt at Fletcher High School in Gweru, Zimbabwe. On their Career Day, 23rd March 2019, I was given the honor as a member of the Fletcher Old Student’s Association (FOSA) to share with the students life lessons that could guide their future and career decision-making at this point. The speech and accompanying video clip had the following content.

🌟 5 Life Lessons that Could Guide Your Career into Future

Hullo everybody, my names are Ennie Chipembere Chikwema. I am a Career and Life Coach by choice, its my life calling. I also work for ActionAid International, an NGO in 45 countries. I have seen the world with ActionAid, because I have worked on short assignments in 35 of its countries. I am the Head Programme Quality, Learning and Knowledge Management. I live in Johannesburg, but my heart is in Zimbabwe💖.

Ennie Fletcher Career Day blog picture

Its an honor to be part of this important moment in your lives. Please allow me to share 5 Life Lessons that Could Guide and Shape Your Career.

🌟 Lesson 1 – Know Yourself ~ find answers to the questions ~ Who am I? Who do I want to become? ~ and Live a Meaningful Life

For some of you, this is the day that will have significant impact on you because of the decisions that you will take afterwards. These will shape your life forever.

Firstly, a Career is not about the job or work you will dobut as you grow older, it is the sum of who you are, what you do at work/on a job, and everything else that makes up your life. Such as family, your friends and networks, being a parent, a citizen and how you contribute to your community, country and others…today is not about subjects you will choose and the job you will eventually have, its about everything that answers the question…Who am I? Or Who are you?

Grapple with these life questions until you find the answer. When you find the answer, who you say you are…is what will give your life meaning.

So today, ask the alummi:

1. Who are you?
2. What gives your life meaning?

Use today as research to help you begin to answer the same questions.


🌟 Lesson 2 – you are not your life circumstances – You are created to be Great ~ so have radical Self-Belief and always say: I am Born to be Great!!!

I would like to share a little bit about my story.

I was born and bred here in Gweru. Mkoba to be specific. The time I was at Fletcher, I was coming out of a two roomed, semi-detached house where we shared a shower and toilet with the neighbours. The kitchen was also the living room, the dining room, the kids bedroom and the guest bedroom because the parents slept in the one bedroom we had.

You are not your circumstances

You are not where you come from, or your parents,  or your subject choices, or whoever you have a relationship with. You are YOU. Created and Born to be Great! Believe it always.

I studied History, Literature and Geography and I was a day scholar so I came here daily after almost two hours of travel. And I had to do it again end of day. So when I got home around 5pm, I bathed, I ate and I slept by 6pm. When it was time for the family to sleep that is when I woke up to study. Consistently for 2 Years of A level, I studied for 5 hours everyday. I still have that work ethic I still have.

My lived reality did not stop me from studying ~ I had the unshakeable belief that ~ I was created to be Great and because of that I made my circumstances work for me.

So today, ask the alumni ~

1. What do you believe about yourself?
2. What drives you or motivates you?

You are NOT your current life. What matters is what you believe about yourself and your inert abilities to succeed.

Believe in Yourself

🌟 Lesson 3 – Know You Have Options ~ lots and lots of career pathways to follow – Find out what they are

During our time we were not fortunate enough to have Career Days like these. Once you were given ARTS, COMMERCIALS or SCIENCE subjects, it seemed like your fate was sealed. But remember…you are not your circumstances. You were born to be Great. And so…shape your path guided by the many options before you.

Your task today and for many years to come is to ask…yourself, important people in your life and the alumni ~

1. What are my options – for a job or to be self-employed?
2. If I make that decision, or take that action…where does that lead me in 5 years, 10 years or even 20 years?

Always research and know all your options before you decide and act.

Exploring Career Options

🌟 Lesson 4 ~ Have a PLAN. Take ACTION. Be strategic.

There is no substitute for having a plan for anything. I had a plan when I was here and living in Mkoba. It was not concrete, but it had some building blocks for the person I am today. Ennie’s Plan (1995) –

1. I wanted to pass
2. I wanted to go to university
3. I wanted to leave Gweru and see the world.
4. I wanted to get a good job.
5. I wanted to live a fulfilling life and help others.

I’m happy to report I achieved and live my life guided by this and other things I have added along the way.

Its never too early to have a Career Plan. Mine was very basic when I was here, but it has been my inner compass and guide. Whenever life pressures mount, I go back to my plan and what’s important to me.

But a plan is not useful if you do not ACT on it. Nothing much to say here. Without action, nothing is going to happen for you.

So today…ask the alumni ~

1. What actions did you take to be where your are or who you are now?
2. What would you do differently?

Plan. Act. Be Strategic!

Plan do check act drawings on post notes

🌟 Lesson 5 ~ To adapt and compete in a fast changing World ~ Learn, Learn, Learn until you die

My mother was a Teacher and until she died, I learnt through how she lived her life. She taught others, she had a side business with multiple income streams, every school holiday she sent us to bond with a different set of relatives and I travelled most of Southern Africa with her, on a Teacher’s salary and my mind was exposed to other countries and possibilities beyond my country. I learnt a lot from her and her life.

Learn from everyone. Learn from life. Learn from reading. Learn from what you do ~ school, the clubs you are part of and your experiences. Learn from both success and failure.

You will need to embrace and practice what is called lifelong learning….

The world is fast changing. If you don’t learn, adapt and change with it you will struggle.

So have a growth mindset and in everything you experience, capture  some lessons. The world is the biggest classroom and it has centuries old wisdom.

So today ask the alumni ~

1. How do you keep developing?
2. How do you keep ahead of life changes and your context?

The world, your life and people you interact with…are the biggest classroom filled with tonnes of wisdom. Tap into it.

Be Curious and Never Stop Learning

In closing: thank you once again for this honor.

Remember these 5 key lessons:

1. Know who you are to, it shapes your career and its important to live a Meaningful life.

2. You are not your circumstances, so always Believe in Yourself…You were created to be Great.

3. Know your Options ~ You have many pathways to follow, find them and decide.

4. Have a Plan and ACT…let it be your flexible guide. Be strategic!

5. To be able to adapt and compete in a fast changing world – Learn from everyone and everything daily, for the rest of your life.

Thank you!

To contact me use: ennielifecoach@servicesgalore.co.za


Ennie Chipembere Chikwema
Career and Life Coach🔥
23 March 2019

2 thoughts on “5 Life Lessons that Could Shape Your Career ~ Looking Back to Move Forward

  1. If you don’t know yourself, you will never know how good you are at anything. Gosh I know there is something I have not done well in life, but have no idea what. Oh, when did Fletcher admit girls? It’s so oooh, weird!


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