Growth is a process, how do we stay focused and keep doing what we are doing, committed to our growth without seeing any visible results yet, Or even a sign of improvement.
It may sounds frustrating and discouraging. Many times you just think of quitting ( like I’ve thought of quitting many times before) Specially in a culture driven by instant gratification. We want it all and we want it now.
The other day I heard a beautiful story about the chinese bamboo tree.
Like any tree, it needs watering, sunshine, fertile soil. It needs nurturing. So one day a poor chinese farmer planted the seeds of this bamboo tree in the soil, setting it's vision and intention for when it would grow to be 80 ft taller.
Day after day he would show up to water the soil, with no visible sign of it be actually working.
First year pass and there is no visible signs of growth, second year and still nothing. By the third year, no evidence of life at all, not even a tiny form of progress, the ground looks exactly as when he planted the seeds 3 years ago. The patience for the farmer at this stage is really tested, and is tempting to just let it go and stop nurturing the soil, or to plant something else instead.
Many questions come up for him, did the soil died? Did the seed got rotten?. His neighbours just laugh at him, saying he’s wasting his time. He begins to question himself.
But even though what everybody around him were saying, he kept going.
Fifth year arrives and, like a miracle, It’s finally up! The chinese bamboo tree is there, We see the growth, but wait… what a growth! The bamboo tree grew 80 ft tall in just 6 weeks! All at once, after 5 long years of no visible signs of it at all.
But, did the bamboo tree grew in just 6 weeks or it grew in 5 years really? Or was the little tree growing underground, developing a root system strong enough to support its potential for outward growth in the fifth year and beyond? Without the 5 years prior of nurturing consistently the bamboo tree wouldn’t be able to grow at all.
This is just the same with us. You probably see others already achieving their goals and dreams. But what you can’t see is all the work underneath the surface. Facing challenges and adversity. Laying the internal foundations, the step backs, failures, are all part of the foundation for a strong growth.
You probably don’t see it now, but all that you’re doing right now, the nurturing, is laying your own foundations for your growth. Is preparing you, so you can grow stronger than you ever imagine.
It’s not easy, and requires patience, trust and consistency to show up every day, no matter what.
So Keep going even if you or others don’t see it yet, and it seems impossible right now. It’s our ability to stay persistent even if we are unable to see anything yet what sets us for success.
So my message to you, and for me, is to plant your dream, have a clear vision of the outcome and then take daily steps towards that vision, ignore others who say it’s not possible for you, push past your own fears, show up every day to water your dream, have faith and be patient. It’ll be all worth it one day.
And one day, like the chinese bamboo tree, you’ll surprise yourself. One day you’ll finally see it.
Whatever it is you want to achieve. You’ve planted a seed inside of you, it will blossom at some point, but Keep your faith. Water and nurture yourself everyday.
What is it you want to achieve in your life, that one day might breakthrough like the bamboo tree?