Growing Like a Weed
Our little apartment in Brooklyn has a rooftop patio – a definite bonus in this big city. And last year on that patio we grew tomatoes and herbs. We weren’t so ambitious this year, but out of the soil we used last year now grows a very healthy and large weed.
Now my point is that no matter what we do, and often in spite of what we do, life goes on. Even when we don’t do anything, or don’t intend to do anything, or forget to do things, or even when we try not to do anything, nature has a way of continuing with its own plans, at its own pace, following its own schedule. We may think we’re in charge, but the force of nature, the luck of the draw, and the rising and falling of the moon and sun all push things along. Last winter’s solstice and this week’s summer solstice attest to that.
As I walk along the tree-lined streets and through the wonderful parks here, the changes that occur throughout the year are very apparent. In the fall and winter, nothing much grows, and that which does, grows slowly. But in the spring and summer (now) the buds and leaves on the trees, the grass, the gardens, and all the friendships spawned by being out with others grow and are there for all to enjoy. And for me, here on my patio, all of that is symbolized by this weed that is growing tall, seemingly all by itself.
So what’s this mean in the overall scheme of things? Simply, that while life continues no matter what we do, we can add to it – if I watered and fed that weed it would be like Jack’s beanstalk. Now apply this to our lives and what we could do to make who we are and all we have bigger and better: working more closely with others, communicating more effectively, adding our efforts and energies where they’re most needed, being open to the new things that present themselves every day, caring a lot about what others do and letting them know, listening to their needs and issues and responding appropriately, saying please and thank you, being sensitive to all that’s going on around us, and reacting calmly and humbly to it all.
Doing all of these things nurtures the growth of things and people, of feelings and dreams and hopes. Take a moment today to help yourself and those around you grow like a weed. Because even though weeds, like people, can and do grow on their own, they can be so much more with the love and support we give.
My message this week is about passion and how to let it help you and others grow:
“Develop a passion for learning. If you do, you will never cease to grow.”
Anthony J. D’Angelo
As the #1 Contributing Author and Editor of The NY Times Bestseller, Chicken Soup For The College Soul, Anthony D’Angelo has been featured in several national media outlets. At the age of twenty five, D’Angelo was hailed by CNN as, "The Personal Development Guru of His Generation".
Passion is really important – to employers, friends, lovers and colleagues. But it’s not something that you can ask about, as in: “hey, are you passionate?” Everyone will answer “Yes!” But it’s not what you say, but rather what you do and how you act. Most people know and recognize passion when they see it, but it’s hard to explain. That’s why you need to definitely be in the moment with everything you do, why you need to pay close attention and gesture with your hands and eyes and overall demeanor, why you need to be expressive in your answers and your actions, and why you need to be interested and attentive to all the details. That’s how passion manifests itself in what you do. Be aware of your energy and your actions today – that’s what will show whether you’re passionate or not. And once others see that you have it, you’ll never cease to grow!
P.S. The picture above shows how my granddaughter and her garden vegetables are growing. And I’m really passionate about that!