We hear it from the time we’re little – “What do you want to be when you grow up?”

We hear it when we’re embarking on our journey – “You can be anything you want!”

We hear it when we think we’ve arrived – “There’s always room for improvement.”

What we hear is meant to be inspiring and to push us to our growth edge, but it also negates the perfect power of where we are, where we’ve come from, and more importantly, WHO we already are.

So much of the world and self-development revolves around growing up into better and different versions of who we can or should be, but what we really need is to grow DOWN into the roots of who we authentically are. The world needs who we were made to be. The world needs who we already are.

One of my favorite metaphors for growth and strength is that of a tree. Trees are strong enough to stay grounded, but flexible enough to flow with the turns of the wind. However, a tree didn’t start as a tree. A tree began as a seedling planted in the soil. It had to crack open and lay down roots before it ever grew into anything we could see.

Just as a seedling cracks open in the darkness of soil, we too have to be cracked open and lay a foundation. It is this foundation that supports and nourishes our growth.

The seed is our truth, our story, our history, our strengths, and our battles. The seed is the potent vibration of our mark on the world.

Each of us has a truth to share, and we all resonate at our own frequency. When we can learn to nurture our truth, to bring it to the surface, and to share it with those around us, we can make space for more strength and connection to occur.

Each of us is part of the greater collective fabric of life. We are all integral. We all have a role to play. We all belong. We are all important.

When we can recognize that the world needs who we were made to be, we can embrace our roots with a nurturing kindness that awakens a new depth of compassion and strength.

Not sharing who you are or your why, especially when it’s something the world needs, is to a degree selfish. We have a responsibility to share our unique truth with the world and create a ripple with the impact only we can make. Yes, some of us will make larger ripples than others, and some of us will have ripples that look different and move in different directions, but it’s not about measuring up to others. It’s about staying grounded and supported by who we are.

To echo one of my favorite quotes by Ralph Waldo Emerson, “The roses under my window make no reference to former roses or better ones; they are what they are; they exist with God today. There is no time to them. There is simply the rose; it is perfect in every moment of its existence.”

So grow down into your roots and allow those roots to anchor you throughout the storms and season of life.