Even in the Hardest Places
How could a tender shoot burst out of solid concrete? It actually didn’t. But if we find ourselves in a difficult situation, it teaches us three valuable lessons.
First, bloom where we are planted.
Can you imagine the shoot moaning, “How I wish I were planted in a lush field instead”? Of course, it can’t do that. But it still kept on growing. It had to. That’s how botany works.
If you can improve your situation, then by all means do so. But if you can’t for now, then the best response is to accept your circumstances and keep on growing. Decide never to curl up and die. Instead, strive to make the best of what is happening to you. That’s how life works.
Second, grow through the cracks.
A closer look shows that the concrete block had some fissures packed with dirt. Somehow a seed found its way into the dirt and germinated. Drawn to the sunlight, the shoot eventually peeked out of the crack and pushed its leaves outward.
You may be in a hard place, but there may be cracks of opportunity. Look for those cracks, then dig in and start growing. For example, your boss made a passing mention about a chronic problem in the organization. Begin tinkering with the solution. Or you see a possible improvement in the business process. While it may be a sliver of change, the benefits may accrue handsomely over time. Who knows where that small start will lead you to?
Third, the harder the place, the more beautiful the sight.
The photo is real. I was making my rounds at work when the shoot stopped me in my tracks. It seemed to be in an act of defiance: even on a piece of rock, I will flourish! The message took my breath away.
I know someone who had a falling out with his boss. So the boss dumped him in Corporate Siberia. For two shameful years, he was stuck to his desk with nothing much to do. His peers felt sorry for him whenever they passed by. Yet he did not whine, play politics, and most of all, resign.
But whatever ad hoc tasks he was given, he gave them his very best. He got the last laugh, however, when that boss retired. The new boss liked his attitude and gave him new assignments. Like the shoot, his career blossomed. He reaped the respect and admiration of his colleagues.
Conclusion. Look at the photo again and see yourself in the shoot. Success is more about who you are rather than where you are. Bloom where you are.
Grow through the cracks of opportunity. And look forward to become a sight to behold.
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