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  • Writer's pictureBrian Reaves

Don't Be Afraid to Grow!

Willow tree

A few years ago, I bought a small willow tree from a local store. It was about three feet tall with just a hint of green on a couple of branches. I took it home and planted it in our front yard with the full intention that one day it would be big enough for me to sit under it and read a book.

And then we hit a drought.

If you know anything about willow trees, they need a lot of water to grow. Alabama suddenly fell into what would become a four-month period with no rain. It was not a good time to plant a tree.

But I wanted that tree to grow. So every day I filled a bucket with water and hauled it out there to water it. The grass turned brown, and every other tree and bush in the yard withered, but in the midst of all that, my willow tree began to grow.

At the end of the summer, that tree was taller than me. And it kept growing when the rain came back. Now all these years later that willow tree is absolutely huge and well over twenty feet tall.

In the middle of a bunch of dying plants, my tree grew because it was getting a supply the rest were not.

Just like that willow tree, you need a consistent supply in order to grow. But positive growth is intentional. It is a series of good habits that propel you ahead of the crowd around you. It is something you do on purpose even when it is not always convenient or easy. But the rewards are worth the work!

Personal growth gives you a head start over your peers. When you do things others do not do, you experience things they can not experience and become something they will not become.

It doesn't have to be something huge, but it needs to be something. Invest in yourself by creating positive habits that will benefit you in the long run. Consider what your goals are for the coming year, plan out what the next steps should be, and then take them.

If you want to start jogging every day, set the clock early but also get someone to join you. That way you'll have added incentive to get up so you don't leave an angry friend out there waiting on you. If you want to eat healthier, do a clean out of the pantry to lose all the temptations to get off the diet, and then tell a family member if they see you slip up and buy something not on the diet list, they need to throw it away (or eat it themselves).

Listen to a positive growth audiobook in your car on the way to work rather than a depressing news report. Turn off the TV a few minutes early and write ideas in a journal instead. Walk the dog around the neighborhood and give your head a few minutes to clear from the busy day.

Build a positive environment in your life that will help you grow. It may not be an immediate and obvious change, but over time every little thing adds up. The little positive habits gain momentum quicker than you think.

I encourage you this week to work on learning something new every day you can. Consistency is the key! It may not be long before you notice how much you're outgrowing your peers. Like my little tree, it'll be because you're getting a different supply than they are.

Remember, you are meant to be so much more than "average"!

Brian sig

P.S. If you are having a multi-day event or want a longer training time, I have three new workshops available:

The Personal Growth Explosion

Making Your Dreams a Reality

Metamorphosis: Transform Your Leadership

These are more in-depth and designed to truly equip your team for success on a deeper level. Your team will receive workbooks, handouts, and more that will help them retain the material covered and continue their personal and professional growth long after the event is over.

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