It is the middle of the week. Might even be the middle of the day when you read this. It might be the middle of your life. I bet, if you are any kind of achiever, there are a few things you expected to have done by now that are not complete. Usually, this leads to a feeling of frustration. This feeling seems to grow as does the time since you began work on this goal/project. I get it. I’ve been there myself and still experience this. Especially, when it is something I am excited to achieve and complete.

What can we do to remain patient and, more to the point, sane while we are waiting for this goal to manifest? Also, what does this picture of my hiking path I took the other day have to to do with any of this? The answer is in the first picture. “The day you plant the seed is not the day you eat the fruit.” This is easy to understand when it comes to growing fruit, but not so easy when it comes to reaching goals.

What can we do if we want the fruit to grow faster? We can make sure it has the right amount of sunlight and water. In other words, make sure it has all the ingredients to help it grow as quickly and as strong as it can. What else could we do? We can remove any rocks or weeds around it. In this case, removing any obstacles that will prevent its growth.

On the other hand, what happens if we try too hard? What happens if we just keep pouring water on the seed? What happens if we put it in the sun too long? It will either flood or dry out in either case it will die.

You may be thinking “that’s great Neil, but I’m not trying to grow a plant!” Whether you are starting your own business, trying to get in shape, or learn a new skill, the answer is the same. Once we begin,or plant the seed, there is only so much we can do. We can work on creating an environment that will make it likely our goal will succeed as soon as possible. Just like watering and making sure our seed has enough sun. If we overdue it, like flooding our seed, it may kill our goal. Think of checking in on other parties that are involved in our goal. Do that once a week or so, it may remind and motivate them. Do it once an hour and you will lose their assistance.

How about removing the rocks and weeds? We can remove obstacles that may prevent our goals. Get all the junk food out of the house if you are trying to eat better. Does this mean you will be skinny tomorrow? Of course not. Does it make it less likely you will fall victim to temptation? Absolutely. Are you more likely to eat junk if you have to get dressed and drive to the store to get it or if you can stay in your pajamas and walk to the fridge?

Just like the tree in this picture, to grow it takes time. Sure, the tree will grow quicker if it has the right amount of sun and water. It will be more likely to grow if all the rocks and weeds are away from the soil. However, it will still take time. Not only does the time it takes a tree to grow vary according to the type of tree,just like it varies depending on what goal you are working on. It also can vary according to the individual tree and the environment it is growing in. Just like the same goal can vary from person to person.

When you find yourself growing impatient, work on both improving the environment and removing obstacles for your goal. When you have done that and your goal has still not manifested, repeat to yourself, “The day you plant the seed is not the day you eat the fruit.” When you have been eating good and putting in the effort at the gym, but you feel like your getting nowhere, say this to yourself. You never now what it happening with the seed under the soil.

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