“Be like a tree. Stay grounded. Connect with your roots. Turn over a new leaf. Bend before you break. Enjoy your unique natural beauty. Keep growing.” — Joanne Raptis
There are so many lessons we can learn from trees. In fact, some of them contradict each other, but I’ve found it best to pick the one that suits the moment. For me, the most relevant lesson I’ve learned from trees is knowing that, as people, we aren’t planted. We can move, grow, and find a new place to plant our roots. We have the flexibility to do it yet so many of us feel stuck at points in our lives. It took a lot for me to stop feeling like this, but there are a few things that helped me transform this mentality.
Think about a time when you felt stuck. Maybe it was in your career, one of your relationships, or just in the shuffle of day-to-day life. What emotions did you feel? Do you know why you felt that way?
Most of the time, when I feel stuck, I feel like I haven’t moved or progressed in some way. I tend to feel frustrated, apathetic, and complacent. This tells me that I’m ready for my next challenge or need to add some variety to what I’m currently doing. It’s hard to look past your emotions when you’re in the middle of experiencing the “stuck” or “planted” feeling. A few things that have helped me are:
- Simply reminding yourself you’re not a tree. You aren’t planted. You can go wherever you want to and experience something new. This simple mindset shift can pack a lot of power.
- Making a list. If you’re anything like me, then you’re probably already grabbing a pen and piece of paper. Weigh out your pros and cons. What is going great with your current situation? What’s challenging? Write down some of the things you want and how you can achieve those goals.
- Make a change. It sounds almost silly since it’s obvious that change is what most people seek when they feel stuck, but knowing the right type of change can help move you forward. Switch up your routine, pay more attention to positivity, and practice self-care more often. When you take care of yourself, it’s sometimes easier to see a clearer vision for the future.
- Get outdoors (if that’s your thing). Spending time outdoors can help you take a moment to think about what you’re truly grateful for. Going to the beach gives me a sense of clarity and mindfulness.
- Journal. Similar to making a list, open your journal (or grab a notebook) and start writing. It doesn’t have to make sense at first, but aim to get your thoughts out of your head and into the atmosphere. You might learn a thing or two about yourself or what’s making you feel sedentary.
- Try something new. Similar to “turning over a new leaf,” try something you’ve always wanted to or something you never thought you would. You can’t grow if you don’t change or push outside of your comfort zone.
- Stay grounded. This might sound like it defeats the purpose of feeling “unstuck,” but stick with me on this one. Think about where you currently are, remind yourself of the good things, and pay attention to how you feel. You might be exactly in the right place but just need to adjust one or two things.
It can be tough to stop feeling a certain way and make changes, but when you take a step in a different direction, it can help you learn so much more about yourself. We have the ability to be flexible and try new things. Why not do it? 🌳