A Prince came to Lao-tzu for enlightenment.
Lao-tzu told him to climb a banyan tree.
The Prince couldn’t understand what knowledge of enlightenment had to do with climbing a tree.
Then Lao-tzu told him to come down.
The Prince started descending.
After the prince had descended 40 feet, Lao -tzu told him to be careful.
The prince was flabbergasted. Lao-tzu didn’t ask him to be careful when he was climbing 50 feet up. Lao-tzu didn’t ask him to be careful when he started descending from the height of 50 feet. Now he was only 10 feet above the ground, Lao-tzu was telling him to be careful.
Lao-tzu explained that the Prince had no climbing experience. When the pursuit of enlightenment is strong enough, then a man will do whatever is required. But in the last phase of the journey, when the land seems so near, one tends to become careless, lose concentration, and commit mistakes.
This is a story shared in my coaching class with CoachU. I love this story because there is so much meaning and depth and it hits so close to home.
For me because It is always much easier to get started working towards your goals but you can’t lose focus when you get close to completing it. Don’t give up.
Tell me…. What does this mean to you?