I look at the trees. Tompkins Square Park, East Village.
They are so grand, yet so humble. They are taken for granted by most. No one pays attention to them, but they don’t mind. They don’t need attention. They just grow slowly. Patiently, humbly, quietly they grow grand.
I admire that.
To be humble. To be patience. To have longevity.
There strength can’t be seen. Their roots are not for show. Their roots are underground, inside, within.
They are vey strong, grounded where it counts. It’s trunk and roots, but they are also supple and flexible. They don’t fight the wind at the top, but sway and blow with the wind.
I admire that.
Strength, that yields.
They follow the cycles of life and death, of the seasons of life. They don’t resist change, they flow with it.
I draw strength from trees and these qualities. My final 2 pull ups become easier thinking about this strength.
Sometimes I forget they are even alive. I let this thought sink in. I walk over to a tree. I touch its bark. It’s like I’m touching its skin. I imagine it being alive. No, I don’t imagine. IT IS alive. I’m no longer touching bark. I’m touching something deeper. I’m touching life. It’s a wild feeling.
What amazing lessons to learn, if I only stop and look at trees more.
In my 20’s I had a big problem with instant gratification. If I didn’t have something now, I get upset, frustrated, and unhappy.
I subscribed to the falsehood of “get rich quick.” I made investments in real estate and stocks I thought would make me rich. With girls, I was always too eager for my own good. With any stimulus in my life, I expected the best right away, and I overexcited myself.
I had no patience. I was only thinking about the short game. Short term thinking. Instant gratification.
I’m still working on this, I’m not perfect, but I’m trying to live my life more like a tree. Grounded. With patience. Thinking about the long game. Long term thinking.
Jewel said it best, in her podcast interview on the James Altucher Show. “We can learn a lot from nature. In Alaska, I noticed the tall hardwood trees, which grow slower, always survive the storms. The small bushy trees, which grow faster, always get uprooted and die after the storms.”
She compares this tree analogy to her art and music. Bob Dylan told her, “Don’t write for radio.” Meaning don’t right for short term gains, instant gratification of money, or other’s approval. Write for the art you love to write. This is the long game. It’s a slower process, but is the true process.
It’s a slower process yes, but with patience, I can grow grand. Not to be perceived as grand on the outside, but to be grand on the inside. From within, with roots.
Like a tree.