Life of a Tree

All our wisdom is stored in the trees.”

― Santosh Kalwar

 

    In the movie The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers there is a prominent character named Treebeard that appears in the movie.  Treebeard is a tree-like creature that is a protector of the forest.  Treebeard walks and speaks just like a giant human being. 

     Although this is man-like fictional species was created by J.R.R. Tolkien for his books you can draw some analogy from it by comparing human beings to trees.  Please bear with me for a few minutes and allow me to walk you through it.  Afterwards you should see that you are super tree in a forest of super trees and you shouldn’t take that honor lightly.

Anatomy of a Tree

     Let’s start out first by discussing the basic anatomy of a tree.  The tree consists of roots, an outer shell called the bark, several inner shells including the sapwood, branches and leaves. Each part of the tree serves an important role in that tree’s successful life on this planet.  The roots serve as both the stability for the tree and the vehicle to absorb essential minerals and water.  The bark’s role is to serve as protection for the tree.  The sapwood helps move the water that is absorbed by the roots to the leaves where the leaves use the water along with sunlight to help produce food for the tree.  All of these parts of the tree must work together in harmony for the tree to thrive.

      The environment in which the tree lives is also important.  There are trees that are best suited for cold climates and that’s where they grow.  There are trees that are best suited for a dry environment and that’s where they will be found.  There are trees that are best suited for a rainforest.  There are trees that are best suited for mountains.  There are trees that are best suited for areas with low sunlight.  The list goes on and on.  The tree’s environment plays a vital role in its successful growth and life. When a tree is in its proper environment it will thrive.  When man interferes and plants trees in the improper environment bad things can happen.  The tree’s growth could be stumped.  The tree’s roots could not provide the proper stability and fail.  If a tree not suited for a dry environment is planted in a dry environment catastrophic circumstances could occur. 
Evidence of this is currently in the news with all of the wildfires in California being fueled by the Eucalyptus trees that were planted there in the early 1900s.  Those trees are native to Australia and are not suited for the dry conditions in California.

Stability and Food

     Now the question becomes how are you like a tree?  Let’s tackle the roots first.  Remember the roots are both the stability and the vehicle to get the plant the vital resource of water that it needs to survive.  Your roots are your beliefs.  Whatever you believe will serve you throughout your life to either keep you stable or unstable.  If you have strong beliefs that serve you then your life will be stable.  If you have limiting beliefs that hamper you, more than likely your life will be unstable.  You beliefs also feed your mind so that the rest of your body can do its job.  It is just like the water for a tree.  If you don’t have strong beliefs it will be difficult for your inner being to perform the duties required to make you thrive.  You will not exude confidence and achieve great results without the right beliefs.  You will not climb mountains, swim rivers, run marathons or reach you highest potential without the right beliefs.  Your beliefs are your roots.

Protection from Failure

    Your protective shell is your thinking, which is directly impacted by your beliefs.  You protect yourself based on the thoughts that you are thinking.  Sometimes you can over protect yourself and sometimes you can under protect yourself.  Unlike the bark of a tree your thinking can be manipulated over time to weaken you or protect you.  When I speak of protection I’m speaking of protecting you so that you get the most out of life.  Not getting the most out of life is a failure and the way you think, like the bark of a tree, can protect you from having failure.  Life is going to throw a lot at you that could help you fail to reach your potential and the best way to protect yourself is to focus on your thinking.

Feelings Ignite Your Actions

     In order to transform your beliefs and thinking into results you will need to take action.  Your actions are the fuel for your life.  If you take no action you do not grow and eventually die.    Your feelings are the conduit to bring your beliefs and thinking into action.  Just as the sapwood moves the water to leaves to produce food for the tree, your feelings transform your thinking into action. Whatever actions you are thinking about taking are ignited by your feelings.  If you are feeling sad and apathetic then you won't take any action or you will take poor actions.  If you are feeling determined, confident, passionate or happy you will take strong and positive actions.  All the actions that you take are heavily influenced by your feelings.

Results are the Food of Life

     Just as the leaves transform light and water into food for the tree, your actions with the help of your feelings transform your beliefs and thinking into the results in your life. You will notice that with many trees the leaves die in the fall and return in the spring.  This can be seen as a renewing process.  In order for the leaves to function properly they need to be renewed and return even stronger.  Your actions need to renew and strengthen as well so that you can continue to get greater results.  If you want to thrive you must continue to get results.  Your results are the food of your life and your actions are the leaves that produce that food.  Just as a trees need food, you need results.

    So hopefully you can see the analogy by now.  Your beliefs are the roots.  Your thinking is the bark that serves as your protection.  Your feelings are the sapwood that ignite your actions based on what you are thinking and your beliefs.  Your actions are the leaves that create results, which are the food for your life.  The more results you obtain the more you will grow.  The more you grow the better the life that you will ultimately live.   

Control What You Can Control

     The last important factor is your environment.  Unlike a tree you can have an impact on the environment in which you spend your time.  If you want to grow then you need to spend time in a growth environment.  You need to be around other people who share that common goal.  You need to be very aware of the environment in which you spend your time.  Once you have increased your awareness you need to make sure you are always controlling what you can control.  You can change your environment by removing your TV and replacing it with a bookshelf.  You can change your environment by switching from listening to music on your commute to work and replacing it with a self-development podcast.  You may not be able to stop it from raining or being freezing cold outside but you can make sure you are feeding your brain with knowledge that can help you achieve the success you desire.  You must control what you can control and there are many aspects of your environment that are fully under your control.

     You my friend are a tree.  You are a super tree in a forest of super trees. 
However as you travel through the forest you will see that not all of the trees are of the same size or health.  Some trees are thriving, some trees are merely surviving and some trees are plain unhealthy.  Because they are all super trees they all have the ability to impact their current situation.  They can improve their roots so they become more stable and absorb more of the vital resources they need.  They can do this by working on their beliefs.  With the right beliefs their thinking will provide the proper protection they need to keep them from failing to reach their potential.  Every tree can control their feelings so that the actions they take get them the proper results that improve their health and increase their growth.  Lastly some of those trees are in the right environment and some of the trees are in the wrong environment.  Luckily those super trees have the ability to change their environment.  Some will take control and change their environment to ensure they are getting the success that they desire.  Other super trees will not be super trees because they will allow their current circumstances dictate their environment and do nothing to improve. 

     You are a super tree and I have a feeling you want to thrive and grow.  If I am right you will do everything in your power to have the right beliefs, have the right thoughts, have the right feelings and take the right actions in the right environment to give you the results you desire in life.  Let this be your reminder to do what is necessary to thrive and grow every day.  This is the essence of Drew’s Reminders.  If you become the super tree you are inside the rest of the forest will benefit as well.  As always I wish you the best and remind you to enjoy the journey.

 

With gratitude,

Drew

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