Inaction Quickly Consumes A Lifetime

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Embracing Curiosity and Boldness

In a book club that I’m part of, we are reading “The Resilient Farm and Homestead: An Innovative Permaculture and Whole Systems Design Approach” by Ben Falk, and a particular quote struck a chord with me. It reads, “Inaction quickly consumes a lifetime, be curious, be bold, pay close attention to the world in front of you and start trying stuff.” This quote resonates deeply as it highlights a universal truth: the ease with which inaction can consume our lives. We often spend years dreaming and discussing our aspirations without ever taking concrete steps toward achieving them.

The Trap of Inaction

It’s easy to fall into the trap of inaction. We get caught up in the ‘perfect’ planning phase, waiting for the right moment, or fear of failure. But as Falk suggests, the antidote to this paralysis is a blend of curiosity and boldness. Curiosity drives us to explore and learn, while boldness pushes us to take risks and step out of our comfort zones.

The Garden That Grows From Curiosity

Take, for instance, the many homesteaders and gardeners I have talked to over the years. Many always wanted to start a homestead but kept putting it off, waiting for the right time and fearing they didn’t have what they needed to accomplish their dream, be it enough land or skills, or time ar a hundred other excuses they make. Finally, one day, they decide to start small – with a single tomato plant or something like that. That small act of trying led to a flourishing garden, a functioning homestead, a changed life and a newfound passion. Stories like these exemplify the profound impact of taking that first step.

Garden Beds
My First Garden Beds Built From Pallets

Paying Close Attention: The Key to Innovation

Paying attention to the world around us is crucial. It’s not just about observing but understanding and engaging with our environment. This practice is central to permaculture and can be applied to various aspects of life.

Learning from Nature’s Resilience

Nature is a great teacher of resilience and adaptation. For example, observing how a tree in your backyard thrives can teach valuable lessons about resilience and adaptation. This tree doesn’t overthink its next move; it simply responds to the changing seasons and conditions, constantly adapting and growing.

Adapting Like A Volunteer Tomato Plant

It reminds me of when I was planting my garden one year, a tomato seed evidently fell into the pathway. This pathway was four inches of gravel with landscape fabric underneath it, and the seed germinated and began to grow, and I let it out of curiosity. This plant outperformed the other plants in my garden, even though the growing conditions were less than ideal to say the least. In the end, this plant provided more delicious tomatoes than the tomato plants in the garden beds.

Volunteer Tomato Plant
Volunteer Tomato Plant

Trying Stuff

The idea of “starting to try stuff” as Falk puts it, is where the real magic happens. It’s about experimentation, learning from failures, and celebrating small victories.

Experimentation Leads to Discovery

Every great invention or discovery began as an experiment. The willingness to try, fail, and try again is at the heart of innovation. Think about Thomas Edison and his journey to invent the light bulb. It wasn’t his first or hundredth attempt that succeeded, but his persistence in trying that led to a revolutionary invention.

A Mediocre Build Led To A Passion

I recall my attempt at building an aquaponics system years ago after a YouTube video sparked my interest. The build was not perfect nor beautiful, but it functioned like it was supposed to, and I was able to grow vegetables using fish and clean the fish water using the vegetables. It was a remarkable synergistic ecosystem that I had put together. This small success sparked years of experimentation and aquaponic system builds that have resulted in many fish and vegetables being grown on my property using this method.

Aquaponics System
My First Aquaponics System Build

Conclusion: A Call to Action

Ben Falk’s quote from “The Resilient Farm and Homestead” is a powerful call to action. It urges us to break free from the shackles of inaction by being curious, bold, and attentive. Whether it’s starting a garden, learning a new skill, or simply observing the resilience of nature, every small step counts. Let’s take inspiration from these stories and start trying stuff. After all, life is too short to be spent in the shadows of inaction.

Remember, every great journey begins with a single step. What will your step be?

Last update on 2024-06-15 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Harold Thornbro

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