Picking the Ripe Apples

May I ask you a question? Might you be guilty of being too smart for your own good? Let me tell you a secret – you’re not alone. Smart people tend to get in their own way a lot. And for some reason, a disproportionate number of business owners are smart, at least in my opinion.

So here’s my encouragement for you today: Stop making things complicated for yourself. It all starts with picking the ripe apples.

Imagine yourself in an apple orchard for a moment. Picture yourself reaching your arm out, fingers curving around the bottom of an apple.

You pull.

But instead of the apple falling into your hand, the entire branch comes with it.

When an apple isn’t quite ripe, it sticks to its branch.

On the other hand, when it’s ripe, it quietly breaks away from its branch with a snick.

There’s something to learn from the way a ripe apple effortlessly leaves its tree when it’s time.

As business owners, one of the valuable things to learn is that there is a season for everything. And sometimes, in our single-minded focus to get ‘something’ done, we force that ‘something’ before it’s time.

The result? Not much to show for a lot of effort!

If you’ve been trying to get something done…

Or you’ve been trying to convince someone of something…

Or if you think you simply must persist towards a certain goal or target or result…

Ask yourself…is this an apple that’s not quite ripe, and must I pick this particular apple now?

The answer is usually no, there are other apples – or even other fruit – that are ripe right now that would be less difficult to pick.

Often, bright people can think their way into a decision that’s based on logic alone. Their intellect ‘informs’ them that their choice is the smart one.

But recognizing there is a natural cycle to everything – including business – will help you put your effort where it’s warranted…where the ripe apples are.

Wisdom Nugget:

Struggle – of all kinds, in business and life – is highly overrated. Are you someone who thinks you have to struggle or work hard in order to achieve something? Where did you learn this message?

Consider the possibility that you could achieve just as much if not more, in your life, not by struggling, but with ease. What feelings come up for you when you explore this concept?

Freely brainstorm and list what you are struggling with right now, using the comment section below, or a piece of paper on your own.

Now that you’ve done that, what are three things you could let go of, and stop struggling? Put a line through each of those. Take just a moment longer here and become aware of your energy and emotions. How do you feel as a result of shedding just a little of your habit of struggling?

This article is an edited version of Chapter 13 from the book ‘Money, Meaning and Beyond.’ More details available at http://www.MoneyMeaningandBeyond.com

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