With their roots in the ground and their crown in the sky, trees have long symbolized enduring strength, protection, and recovery from illness. They are strong and flexible, able to resist tumultuous storms, and yet they are kind and graceful offering shade on a sunny day or the bounty of fruit for harvest. Trees give life. They gather in the everyday pollution that results from our existence and purify it to be released as life giving oxygen. One day per year, we celebrate this act of generosity and call it Arbor Day. For Arbor Day, people are encouraged to plant and care for trees.
This year, if you are unable to plant a physical tree, I encourage you to plant a figurative tree in the garden of your soul. Plant this tree to meet your individual needs. To do this, picture your ideal tree then visualize planting it inside yourself where no one else knows its there. Keep it as your secret and visit it as needed to maintain your mental health. Allow your tree to take in all of your mental pollution and purify it from your mind.
Choose a tree that is indicative of where you are in life. Some options include:
- Olive tree -- The olive tree symbolizes peace. It offers its branches to repair a strain in a relationship.
- Holly tree – The holly tree symbolizes protection and the ability to overcome anger.
- Juniper Tree – The juniper tree symbolizes a great journey. Its branches show that regardless of how many twists and turns it has been forced to take it has not compromised its integrity.
- Oak Tree – The oak tree symbolizes strength, courage, and power. Its great thick, trunk has the ability to stand through all things.
- Palm Tree – The palm tree symbolizes a combination of peace and flexibility. It bends without breaking in the face of a hurricane.
After your tree is planted, spend some time contemplating the choice you made. Are there issues in your life that need to be addressed? Are there choices that need to be made?
You can return at any time to visit with your tree. I find that my introspections often occur around life events where I am dealing with strong emotions. I visit during times of bereavement, depression and anxiety. During times of abundant joy, I often find my tree blooming with vibrant shades or loaded with abundant fruit waiting for me to pluck the bounty from its branches. No matter which emotion I am dealing with, my tree is always there, right where I left it, waiting for my visit.