One Quote Changed my Perspective
You may have heard of the phrase “Life is a Marathon, Not a Sprint” — but I prefer to remind myself that an “Oak Tree doesn’t grow in a day.” Let me, however, tell you a story.
We’re all familiar with the mighty oak (or the great Redwoods may be more familiar for some readers); however, the concept is the same behind this story, and I’m going to tell it as someone describing an Oak Tree.
I was young, and my brain was bounding with energy. I remember marveling at a great oak tree — it’s old knotted branches having to be supported by wooden props. I remember questioning how it got so impossibly large, and how many sights it must have seen. Even then, I was aware that an oak tree didn’t grow in the day, but it was considered a truly great tree.
I was older, I was frustrated that my ideas were taking so long to bear fruit — and I still get like that. A friend of mine turned to me and gave me an acorn and asked me a question, “Is this an Oak Tree?”. I responded, “no, it’s an Acorn.” To which he replied with this, “Does this acorn grow into an oak tree in a day?”. Once more, I had to respond with a no — yes eventually if planted in the ground an acorn could grow into an oak tree, and maybe live many years if it didn’t succumb to vandalism or disease just getting cut down for being in the wrong place. He then looked at me and with a gentle smile stated
“Correct. Like this Acorn, your ideas may grow and bear fruit, and last a long time, in the fertile soil of your imagination, with care and patience; but an Acorn doesn’t grow into an Oak Tree in a day — nor can your ideas.”
Those words stuck with me, and now whenever I’m getting frustrated at the speed of change, and growth, I remind myself through the phrase “An Acorn doesn’t turn into an Oak Tree in a Day.” Not everything is destined to bear fruit or grow, but anything that does takes time. Sometimes we need to focus more on tending our ideas, gardens, and trees, planting new seeds and acorns, and then being patient. They will bear fruit — or we will decide they weren’t right and remove them, giving space for other idea trees and plants to grow in their space.