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Pruning Season of Life, written for Living Well Magazine, April, 2017

Posted on May 27, 2017 at 12:58 PM
Pruning Season of Life by Georgia Smith


Are You In A “Pruning” Season of Life
Imagine you are a tree, but not just any tree. Imagine you are a beautiful, majestic apple tree of Washington, or a lovely orange tree which grows in California orange country. Or would you rather be a juicy peach tree from Georgia? No matter which tree you favor, the process of growth year by year is similar for all fruit bearing trees. Pruning fruit trees is necessary for new vibrant growth to occur. The definition of pruning is “trim by cutting away dead or overgrown branches or stem, especially to increase fruitfulness and growth; cut away; reduce the extent of something.” The pruning process does not only prune the dead branches but also the branches that have born growth and appear healthy. Pruning the dead branches and overgrown healthy ones are the only way to foster a healthy root system, and abundant fruit for future years. The pruning process typically takes place in wintertime.
 Human lives experience seasons just like our beautiful trees in nature. Our seasons are more complex of course, however, very similar. A winter season in a person’s life can symbolize a time when life appears to not shift in the direction you have hoped for and remains dormant. This dormancy prompts a realization that if positive change is to occur, the process of cutting away or letting go of some things in your life are necessary for the new growth and season to spring forth. This season can be uncomfortable and feel as though you are on an adventure of uncharted territory…a place where you have never gone before.  Your knowledge of what this new life change will look like might be clear or many variables still yet to be revealed.  You are definitely in a pruning season if this sounds familiar! Or maybe you have walked this way a few times in your life, and you know exactly what “pruning season” of life means. Letting go of what has been familiar and those things which brought years of security may need sorting through to determine what to take with you and what to leave behind. Embrace the process of change through the pruning season of your life, looking ahead for the new vision, and taking inventory of those things in your life that need pruning to make room for the new. We all know life is a journey, but can you make it an “adventure” if faced with new opportunities? Don’t let the wintertime of life fool you into thinking everything will remain the same. It is this season of life that can bring the greatest changes and growth if you allow the uncomfortable process of pruning to occur.
Do you have a direction or new vision you want to embrace?
Are you in a dormant, wintertime season of your life?
Are you willing to take an inventory of all the changes which need to occur?
Will you say yes to the pruning process by changing or letting go of some things to embrace the new direction?

If your answers are “yes” to all of the above, you are in for a journey full of adventure. Embrace the change, acknowledge any fear of change, and don’t be paralyzed by fear. Be confident in the new growth and look forward to a positive outcome.  
 
Georgia Smith-Lyle, MA, LPC-S

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