Recently I stumbled upon this principal coming from Les Brown which turned my head around 360 degrees. I felt it necessary to share, so enjoy!
Chinese Bamboo Tree
Like any plant, growth of the Chinese Bamboo Tree requires nurturing through water, fertile soil, and sunshine. This remarkable tree is different from most trees in that it doesn’t grow in the usual fashion. In its first year though, we see no visible signs of growth in spite of providing all of these things.
In the second year (again), there is no growth above the soil.
The third, fourth year…still show no signs of anything happening.
Our patience is tested, and we begin to wonder if our efforts caring for and watering the tree will ever be rewarded. We start to doubt ourselves and question the value of our efforts. Inevitably, we contemplate quitting.
But then finally in the fifth year – something amazing happens…
The tree begins to grow at an astonishing rate! In a period of five weeks, a Chinese bamboo tree can grow to a height of 90 feet.
It’s almost as if you can actually see the tree growing before your very eyes. But wait a sec! Does the Chinese Bamboo Tree really grow 90 feet in 5 weeks? Did the Chinese Bamboo Tree lie dormant for four years only to grow exponentially in the fifth?
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?
Patience and endurance is the answer. Had the tree not developed a strong unseen foundation it could not have sustained its life as it grew. The same principle is true for people.
People, who patiently toil towards worthwhile dreams and goals, building strong character while overcoming adversity and challenge, grow the strong internal foundation to handle success. Meanwhile get-rich-quickers and lottery winners usually are unable to sustain unearned sudden wealth. They haven’t become the person they need to be to support such success.
And had the Chinese Bamboo Tree farmer dug up his little seed every year to see if it was growing, he would have stunted the tree’s growth. In other words, the actions caused by self-doubt would’ve halted the miracle from ever taking shape and cause him to go backwards.
You and I are the same. It takes faith to work while you wait. It takes belief in yourself to keep going. It takes confidence to trust that you always get paid for how hard you work – sometimes now, often times later, always eventually.