Break through

Everyone has seen a tree but very few people have ever considered how trees come to be what they are. Every tree follows certain, very specific developmental paths.

The tree always begins as a seed. Deep in every tree’s seed is not just another tree waiting to sprout but an entire forest waiting to be born. The seed is made up of nutrients surrounded in a shell. The seed absorbs nutrients from the mother tree and stores them. However, for the seed to fulfill its potential it must be detached from the mother tree and be dispersed. Once the seed is dispersed from the tree it begins a waiting game; waiting for the right conditions for it to germinate. Light sensitive chemicals in the seed’s shell signal for it to germinate once there is the right amount of light and water. Seeds that fall under the tree and live in the tree’s shadow rarely germinate; and when they do they are never healthy. This is because the shadow of the mother tree stifles their growth by starving them of the much needed light. If the environment is right, the seed will start to absorb water and will continue to until the shell bursts open. The first part of the tree to develop is the root, at this stage called the radical. It grows down looking for more water and minerals that will feed its growth. The second part shoots out of the ground in search of light. Both parts continue to grow, however the root does so below the surface. The glamorous and magnificent trees that we see grow to their full stature by continuously reaching out for the light. However, the tree above the ground is actually sustained by a solid root network below it.

In many ways our lives follow the growth trajectory of the tree. It is important that we unpack these facts and learn from them. First, every tree was once a seed; even the mighty oak was once just an acorn. This is true of humans. All great people were once frail and vulnerable novices. No one is born great, although some people are born into families with a great history. If your grandfather had a great history, that does not automatically make you a great person in much the same way as being born in a Mercedes Benz plant does not make you a Mercedes Benz. Just as every seed has the potential to become a great tree, potential to achieve greatness is inherent in every human being. Every magnificent life was once but a small dream. Achievements are born out of dreams and desires.

Editor's Comment
Parents should be more proactive in children’s lives

Parents need to pay particular attention to their children to ensure they grow up in a healthy environment that supports their development and mental health. Healthy attachments between parents and children foster strong bonds, creating a solid foundation for future leaders.In many African cultures, there is a common perception that parents should use a stick to discipline naughty children. While disciplining children is important, it is equally...

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