Success Stories By Dick Kazan - Valuable lessons on how to succeed in business and in life
Entertaining and compelling real-life stories with valuable
lessons on how to succeed in business and in life.
The author is successful business, real estate, and media entrepreneur Dick Kazan.
Published on June 17, 2008

Today: As strong as a tree trunk, as gentle as a leaf.

Springtime warms the Yosemite Valley from the icy temperatures of winter, beckoning animals large and small. Granite peaks soar thousands of feet into the clear blue skies, and the ground around them is suddenly bursting with wild flowers in reds and yellows and purples.

The melting snows at the highest peaks begin a slow trickle of pristine chilled water downward to join other droplets and together flow in to waterfalls dropping cascading torrents of white water on to the rocks below with a roar that echoes through the Valley.

On the Valley floor, standing alone in a lush meadow of two inch high green grass is a majestic seven story tall oak tree. Its trunk is 20 feet around and its thick canopy shields the mid-day sun, as its softly fluttering green leaves shade the universe around it.

Feeding on one of its acorns is a tiny brown chipmunk, his chubby little cheeks merrily munching the teeny morsels and a glow in his eyes that whispers, “Life is good.”

Next to this giant tree are two fallen branches, whose high points each rise two feet and are wide and comfortable enough to beckon passersby to have a seat and enjoy the magnificent view.

How old is this tree? Considering that each year places a very thin ring of bark, at 20 feet around it is many centuries old. Acorns were a staple of the native peoples’ diets and it is easy to imagine that for generations, this tree offered them a living storehouse of nourishing food.

What makes it special to us today? It helps us to relax and find peace within ourselves, as it stills the mind and awakens something deep inside of us. Whether it’s a yearning to be in a Garden of Eden, or simply to enjoy nature’s gentle touch, it kindles the spirit.

As one sits quietly, muscle tension eases, and stress and worries seem to float away in the clean fresh air scented by the pine trees and the giant sequoias off in the distance. The world becomes timeless and the mind rests on a pillow of serenity.

Whatever one’s purposes in life, they can be found here in the deep reflective pools of one’s inner being, if one has the desire to look.

And when the mind eventually says it’s time to go, one turns a complete circle, absorbing nature’s splendor in every direction and from each breath of pure clean air. Rejuvenated, one is now ready to calmly face society’s challenges once again, perhaps with greater insight.

But one cannot leave without saying goodbye to this regal towering oak tree, which for centuries has welcomed visitors of all shapes and sizes. And as I placed my palms on its massive trunk, to its side was this same tiny chipmunk, his tummy full, tucking away another acorn for later.

Success Tip of the Week: For a little while today, turn off your computer, your cell phone or other high tech devices, shut out the traffic noise and other stress’ and relax. If you take a few moments to rejuvenate yourself you’ll return renewed, happier and better able to deal with your issues.

In the next KazanToday: A rich man who found far greater meaning in his life by surrendering his wealth and living with and helping the poor and the sick.

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Many of these short, inspirational success stories are about people from all walks of life who overcame seemingly insurmountable obstacles to achieve remarkable results. These stories contain practical advice and a recipe for success for each of these renowned individuals. Some of their stories may help you to avoid some of the costly and time consuming mistakes that many of us make in life and at work. Learn from some of history's greatest winners on how to become a winner yourself, no matter what the obstacle, and no matter how daunting the task before you may seem. Good luck!