When Acorns Become Oak Trees

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“What would you like to be when you grow up?”

Who can remember the last time somebody asked you this question? Perhaps it was a teacher, a relative or friend? Maybe it was you…

I’m 25 years old and I still find myself asking this question. That’s right, even after Media College, short-term Self-Employment, retail full time employment, catering and 5 years of studying something believed to be “my chosen career”, now on a degree course after finally moving away from home and I still asked myself recently “what do I want to be?”

The last answer I have given to this question, seems perhaps to be something of great logical and spiritual sense to me. Counselling has given me the attentive listening skills, empathic understanding and firm foundations in the industry of helping people. After deciding to complete my final year with that of a theoretical route due to my method of helping people taking another route, also; through inspiration and motivation rather than healing. In October, last year, I took an introduction course to Personal-Performance Coaching and I absolutely loved it! This made sense to me and with my Counselling background, I was able to have that extra confidence to pursue this route. It’s now mid-February and this desire has only grown stronger- I can’t wait to begin training…

What made sense to me with Coaching, is that the main role of the helper is to “find potential” within the client and allowing that to blossom, allowing the client to achieve their dreams. There are many things that give me satisfaction in life, yet finding that one little acorn, which doesn’t seem to stand out for good reason, or perhaps nobody else has thought to plant because they believe it wouldn’t grow anyway and watching it prove those doubters wrong by growing into the most magnificent oak tree! I have watched a number of people close to me, manage to do this and I just can’t express how amazing it is to see them develop right before my eyes. With Coaching, I would get to do this every day and I can’t think of a more positive, fulfilling career! I watch YouTube channels which promote positive lifestyle which inspired me so much from my first year of university. I think it’s great to see people expressing themselves to the world through their videos (and more recently, I’ve read them do so through blogging), how they have a chance to earn a living through being themselves, how genuinely helpful their messages are and I now find more insightful and entertaining than the average TV program- because they are REAL. I love listening to their success stories and how they started up- I find the whole thing totally inspirational and I just want to do the same!

The reason I named this blog “When Acorns Become Oak Trees”, is because it reflects so much from my many lessons I had learned during my years of martial arts with my ‘Karate family’ as I call my dojo (I shall link here, both my Sensei, Chris Denwood’s website and the organization, ESKK Martial Arts & Fitness here.) My Sensei produced a DVD based on his concepts within traditional Karate- the art of ‘kata application’ based on this idea of finding the most potential of a movement. Chris has also written books of similar nature, yet in more detail of the art of karate; whether you are a martial artist or not, they contain some very interesting lessons and these can be accessed via his website in the link, previous.

“Karate is not just in the Dojo- it’s everywhere.”

-Chris Denwood

This lesson has stuck in for me in not only a martial arts sense, but in my own way: this observation of others achieve marvelous things by self-development, watching their minds open wider and wider, their range of possibilities grows as they aim higher for their dreams. Their potential, although the size of an acorn, may not be spotted by the majority, however, there will be someone whom will see it laying there beneath the dead leaves, reaching for the sunlight of positive warmth, with just the very tip visible to the world. I take these individual acorns and give them their own patch of soil. I like to show them their there are no limits, they have all the space in the world where they can grow. But once they are in the soil, and when it rains and the sun shines down, it is up to them. They will have all their valuable nutrients, an environment for a healthy you tree- growth will come naturally as long as they have the intent, they can grow as big as they desire. The most positive light, the bigger and stronger, the resulting tree- strong enough to provide shade and shelter for others, even provide a home for nesting birds and food for squirrels…

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The Inspiring Journey of Acorns

I found a little acorn in particular a few years ago. Like the other acorns I have found, this one stood out. It was so shiny on one side, yet the other side was rather dull, covered in the dust of the ground, surrounding it. I wanted to see what kind of tree this would turn out to be as it was such an attractive little acorn. I planted it, where I felt had the right conditions. Such an acorn was bursting with potential and it couldn’t wait for the water to lift it up through the soil so it could bath under the positive light of warmth forever. This acorn knew that even when it rained and the light was dull, it didn’t mean the positive warmth had deserted it. The acorn saw reason to keep growing and growing and I’m pleased to say that this acorn is now a brave, strong little tree, still growing with an intent to meet the highest of canopies…

Some acorns don’t grow so willingly and appear stubborn with scars and scratches, perhaps abandoned by squirrels that have buried them for winter. The acorn doesn’t want to be put here to wait out their fate, although it sometimes feels like giving up hope- it will be eaten and that was the whole point in it’s miserable little life… The acorn may decide to make the most of this bad situation- it’s in the soil, there will be nutrients- if only it can get enough to reach the warm, positive light. It’s these acorns which have taken that extra bit of energy to grow and that extra bit of motivation- but where did that come from?… The acorn breaks through the ground and now, the warm light of positivity is on their side and it knows the only way is upwards from here…

As a young oak tree, we need to grow our branches and sometimes this can use some help. Branches need protection. There are times where I want to chase away the fools that swing on branches of young trees and snap them, as some are not yet strong enough to take the weight of others. We have our different branches that may have different values- each to that of the individual. Friendship branches, family branches, study branches, career branches… Sometimes branches grow so strong, their leaves grow lush green and they grow their own little acorns! The oak tree may grow and nurture those acorns, providing the environment they need… but when it is time for them to fall to the ground, they will be alone, meeting other acorns, closer to the dangers of the world, even though they remain under the shelter of those great branches of which their were raised.

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Two acorns may choose to grow close to one another. I have learned from my therapist and the experience around this concept that when two oak trees grow side by side, they remain strong within themselves, but if their branches intertwine, they can weaken each other, perhaps a most valuable branch would be broken…

Oak trees look so strong and mighty when they stand independently. Their potential and hard work is now for all to see: lush, green leaves, strong branches, attractive to birds and animals for nesting, little acorns peaking from beneath the greenery, already showing their potential to the waiting world below them.

If you can’t tell, I like to talk in metaphors. I don’t think there is a better way that I, personally can explain what I see, when I watch others grow, fulfilling their own potential. At the moment, I feel like a sturdy, young oak tree but with one branch still left to grow stronger before I can assist the other acorns other there- my branch of independence. We need to remember that even when we are oak trees, there is still a reminder of that little acorn we once were, so we wont always feel as sturdy as we appear in some situations. Once grown, an oak tree would need a powerful storm or huge axe to bring it crashing down. It would take a lot to remove the evidence of ones achievements. Nobody can take away how much you have grown. The skills learned and experience will still remain with you and be there to assist you better than before, when you were a little acorn.

Nature is so inspirational- how amazing it is that the potential of a huge sturdy oak tree, lays hidden within the shell of a tiny little acorn? A complete reflection of our lives…

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Thank you so much for reading this rather metaphorical post and I hope you have enjoyed it. I would be interested to know if you knew any acorns? What are your views on personal growth? Please do comment, below anything you wish to share.

Here are the links, once again to the source of my inspiration for the title of this blog and concepts within it’s meaning:

ESKK Martial Arts & Fitness: eskk.co.uk

Chris Denwood: chrisdenwood.com

 

All the best,

Heather ^_^

 

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