Many die a scrubby thing.

Choose your habits.

The tree that never had to fight

For sun and sky and air and light,

But stood out in the open plain

And always got its share of rain,

Never became a forest king

But lived and died a scrubby thing.

Good timber does not grow with ease:

The stronger wind, the stronger trees;

The further sky, the greater length;

The more the storm, the more the strength.

By sun and cold, by rain and snow,

In trees and men good timbers grow.

This is an eloquent poem by Douglas Malloch that touches upon one simple point — embrace problems and difficult situations and overcome them and you will come out stronger. Shy away from them and spend all your time in luxury and you’ll die a scrubby thing.

This doesn’t mean you have to put yourself through physical and emotional hardships. But you need to constantly challenge yourself physically, emotionally and intellectually.

All it means is that the environment we are in shapes us. And it is up to us to choose the environment that we want to be in.

You are the people that you hang out with. You are the thoughts you think and the things you do.

As FM Alexander said, “People do not decide their futures. They decide their habits. And their habits decide their futures.”

Choose your habits. And choose your environment.

Before you go…

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