Do you ever experience setbacks or do they come on a regular basis? Chances are that you might feel down, tired or sad and you want to give up on the task associated with the setback.
We live here in Finland in a country of intense and rather long winter but also with a shorter and somewhat warm summer. We still can grow many plants, fruits and vegetables. In fact, it is almost like a Finnish tradition to enjoy many types of berries like raspberries, red and black currant, gooseberries, the very special cloudberry and also classics like strawberry together with potatoes, carrots, cottages, peas and many mushrooms – just to mention a few.
As nature has only a short time here to grow things, it should rather do it quickly. Compared to more southern countries, like my birth country Austria, growth speeds have to be a lot faster to cover up for the shorter growing time. Same applies for grass, dandelion flowers and many other greens that typically grow in a garden.
Exactly for that fast growth speed of plants it is a very necessity to mow the lawn a lot more often and more regularly than in other places. And don’t think of us like people who want to have their English lawn perfectly cut to the right millimeter in length. We love the natural aspect of nature and keep things rather natural in our garden. However, we still need to mow the lawn in order to be able to have paths and other areas for activity.
So, nature might see the cut as a major setback. It invested a lot of water and energy into growing plants in a short time to a very high height. And then we humans come and “destroy” it in a very short time – within seconds or minutes. Isn’t that unfair?
If nature was of human nature – interesting formulation, indeed – it might typically immediately start complaining after the first setback and then after the second, third or fourth time of being cut dramatically it might just say:
Thank you but I’m done with this sh**. I don’t want anymore. I’ll stop doing it and do something else instead, or nothing.Nature, if it was human
Would be an interesting thought if nature would just stop growing. But it doesn’t. And that’s the key though here.
Nature just does its thing. And if someone knocks it down, it just gets back and continues its thing. That’s nature. No complaints, no swearwords, no accusations, nothing. Just gets back to work again.
You know who does the same by the way?
They make their first steps. They fall down. They get up and do next ones. If they’d stop after their first setbacks, no one would ever be walking by now. Same applies for them learning to speak, eat or accomplish any other task. Nothings comes perfectly ready from the beginning. (Almost) Everything needs to be trained. And with training comes failure, setbacks and imperfection. That’s the very nature of nature probably.
One of the main concepts keeping many of us from doing new things, learning new skills, starting a new craft or opening a business is the idea of perfection. If you accept that setbacks are natural part of life and getting “back up” is natural as well, you can start letting go of the idea of perfection in the sense that “you are only good enough if you do something perfectly”. Actually, it’s not about being perfect – it’s about starting. That’s where the magic happens.
Nature grows, changes or is being changed and grows again. Kids make a step, fall down and get up again to do the next step.
Do the same. Whatever your “step” is. Then make the next one. Setbacks are part of the journey. Accept it and don’t take them too serious. Make the best out of them.
You will learn how to dance and celebrate your life. Enjoy this thought.
Philip finds his inspiration in everyday life and finds profound messages even in basic tasks.