It is healthy to periodically remove excesses to restore balance and promote growth in our lives.
For the past 100 years we have carefully watched and patrolled the earth’s forests to prevent forest fires from destroying our national parks. The ugliness of raging fires leaves the land scarred and black. We have done our job well, perhaps too well.
A walk through a healthy forest will reveal a heavy blanket of debris and plant life. Trees reach to the sky in abundance almost blocking the sun from the forest floor. It seems peaceful, beautiful, and quiet. It is a bit too quiet according to forest rangers.
Because we have carefully guarded the forest from fires, we have tipped nature’s scale into an unfavorable balance. Without fires periodically cleaning out excess plant life and removing dead debris, there is no longer a natural way of maintaining nature’s delicate balance. First, as the shade-loving plants increase, they create a thick bed which prohibits the penetration
of seeds needed for future tree growth. Second, if too many tall trees are growing, they block out the life-giving light necessary for the sun-loving plants below. Not only do we have an extreme fire hazard created by the excess debris, but we lose vital plant growth. To solve this problem, forest rangers have introduced “prescribed burns.”
As an area of the forest becomes too cluttered and dangerous, a controlled fire is created to burn out the unwanted debris and plant life. It is done with prescribed conditions only after careful study, monitoring, and site preparation. First, it must be either done in late spring or in early fall after a rainfall. Second, the degree of heat must be hot enough to considerably set back unwanted growth, but not too hot to damage the big trees. Third, an additional fire is set to remove the burned residue. Fourth, the area is watched and monitored to determine growth progress.
The short-term effects of a fire are not aesthetically pleasing, but the long-term result is beneficial and even necessary. New growth softens the initial harshness of the fire. Without these prescribed burns, the whole forest would deteriorate and eventually cease to exist.
The analogy applies to our lives. Businesses, as well as relationships, need careful monitoring to ensure constant growth. Being open to ridding ourselves of excess “debris” and moving ahead is a healthy approach to any endeavor. If we are bogged down in heavy debris we might be choking out the very things we need to maintain a healthy environment. Consider your organization, business, and relationships. Is it time, perhaps, for a personal prescribed burn to restore balance and promote vital growth?
Examine your business, relationships, and organizations.
How do you allocate your resources? Are they providing you what you expected and what you need?
- Are you getting bogged down by any “debris” (procedures, red tape, needless meetings, and negative relationships) that stifles other opportunities
Do you feel you have an appropriate balance that promotes healthy growth?