Tending Life’s Garden
When I first received some of these plants in the ’90s, social media wasn’t even born. For reference, LinkedIn started in 2003. Facebook, the game changing social media network, was founded in 2004. Twitter in 2006. The first pin on Pinterest was posted in 2010. Google+ began in 2011, which is the same year the promotional products industry social networking platform commonsku launched. Through all this, my office plants have continued to grow.
Some plants require special care. One becomes root bound and needs to be transplanted to a larger pot to survive every so often. It’s kind of scary when you outgrow where you are and need to take the risk of moving into something bigger. If you don’t take the risk, however, your business, like the plant, will die.
Other plants need pruning—cutting back parts that are not growing well or trimming parts that look great, but are not growing in the right direction. All of our plants need to be watered and occasionally fertilized to remain healthy.
On a more personal note, one particular plant has significant place in my wife’s and my hearts. A good friend gave it to us when we lost our first son through a miscarriage. While we have had to go through some difficult times, we now have an amazing 18-year-old son. This plant is more than 20 years old. When I needed to transplant it earlier this year, I felt pressure to take special care. Thankfully, it’s doing quite well.
It’s the same way in our businesses and personal lives. To thrive, we need to take care of what we are entrusted with. That means investing a bit of time cutting away what’s stagnant. Adding fertilizer with personal and professional development, spending time with your family and friends, getting away from the office to be refreshed, and making hard choices to cut away those parts of the business that are dying or are not sustainable in the long term.