Be Like A Tree
Seventy miles from Vancouver Island, an arboreal wonder can be found on the quiet waters of Fairy Lake. Sticking up out of the middle of the lake’s stillness is a tiny Douglas fir tree. The tree stands proudly on its own upon a submerged dead log.
The tree’s unlikely survival story has captured the attention of tourists, hikers, boaters and photographers alike. Against all odds, how did a lonesome tree grow with a dead log as its only source of nutrients?
Like humans, trees have the ability to adapt to their environment and survive through adversity. In fact, trees can teach us many stories of wisdom and awareness that apply to our everyday lives. As silent teachers with a history long outdating ours, they have much to share about resilience and survival.
Sometimes change is a good thing –
Deciduous trees lose their leaves when they decide the environment calls for a different approach to life and their way of being. They rely on a combination of genetic and environmental factors to help them know when the time for change is right.
When we live with the knowledge that change is inevitable and vital to our development, it helps us to continue to grow.
Grow strong roots –
A tree that develops a deep, strong root structure can withstand heavy winds without toppling to the ground. The roots of a tree continue to grow throughout the tree's lifespan, always expanding outward and downward in search of what the tree requires to survive
White oak, hickory, black gum, sassafras, sweet gum, Japanese pagoda, butternut and some pines develop deep roots. During their first years of life, the trees display remarkably little top growth because all of their energy is focused on creating a deep and diverse root system
Our value system is our roots. Grow and maintain strong roots for yourself by knowing who you are, where you come from and where you want to go. Having strong roots also means staying grounded, clear and focused.
Being open to light, leads to the most growth –
Trees try to maximize the surface area of their leaves because they need light to grow. Many trees grow their branches toward more concentrated areas of light and some plants even move with the sun as it travels across the sky, a process called heliotropic sun-tracking. They know how important light is, and they try their best to openly receive as much as possible.
Human beings need to receive and give light in the form of positivity and encouragement. The more we show kindness and compassion to one another, the more we will continue to thrive.
Community matters –
Many species of trees thrive among family. Trees deal with the heat, cold, and drought together by building an ecosystem to support each other. Experts have proven that trees in this type of environment live to be quite healthy and old.
Just like trees, we need the support of other people and our communities to survive. We become resilient to the trials and challenges of life because we can turn to friends and family for help and support. What may happen to one person can impact an entire community.
Stand tall even in adversity –
Wild storms and extreme weather conditions can make trees dance wildly, and although some do not survive, others stand the test of time again and again.
Trees teach us to be tougher and stronger when faced with challenges. Our experiences with these struggles will help us learn the skills to win and rise above difficulties.
Shelter and bring comfort to others –
Taking shelter from a tree can bring relief and enjoying time in nature is proven to make us happier and healthier, both physical and emotionally.
Just like trees, we can help and comfort one another. There are many ways for us to provide relief for friends, family and members of our community, who may be struggling and in need of support.