Nature Does Not Hurry

There’s one phrase that I heard a few years ago that has stuck with me. It was this. “Nature does not hurry, yet everything is accomplished.” It’s Lao Tzu so I feel it has more legs that the average motivational post.

It has been rolling over in my brain these last few weeks because at this time of the year there is a tantalising taste of what is to come. From February, the signs of spring were everywhere. Buds. Green shoots. First blooms. There’s a whiff of excitement that winter is over and there are bright days coming. And then inevitably it feels like it comes to a standstill. Well maybe not quite a standstill, but the speed slows and it feels like it’s a long time waiting for the leaves to arrive. Final weeks of preparation. Final anticipation. Like waiting for Santa when you were a kid. It feels like it takes forever.

Of course, it’s not like the world just springs back like an elastic. Any faint thought on the biological and chemical processes that are happening to create will be enough to blow your mind. Good things take time. Good things come to those that wait.

This last week or so, the buds have erupting.  Sealed packages bulging at the seams.  Bright green bursting forth.  It takes time.  It’ll get there. 
Like lots of the things I write about, it’s usually some kind of a lesson that I need to learn.  I have always been that person incapable of waiting for anything.  Impatient to grow up.  Impatient for the next big thing.  Next. Next. Next.  Sometimes though I’ve had the “Take a Pause” lesson writ large.  Health compromised.  Approaching burnout. You don’t always get a chance.
And now, after a year of pause, it has been feeling like we are getting back to pre-pandemic levels of busy making me genuinely wonder how on earth I managed to fit in commuting and a social life not more than twelve months ago. Like a lot of people, I haven’t always bothered to actually take the holidays I can because it doesn’t feel much like a holiday when there’s nowhere to go.  But yesterday, I switched on my out of office for more than 10 days, the longest continuous break in a while. There is still nowhere to go and nothing much to do.  So this is the chance to stop hurrying and just take a pause.  Things will get done.  There is no need to rush. Our deadlines are usually imaginary and almost always self-imposed.  

So as everyone talks about “getting back to normal” I am taking a leaf (get it?) out of nature’s book and taking the hurry out for the next 10 days. Sure there are things to do but the haste has to go. Everything will be accomplished.