“Interestingly, Koi, when put in a fish bowl, will only grow up to three inches. When this same fish is placed in a large tank, it will grow to about nine inches long. In a pond Koi can reach lengths of eighteen inches. Amazingly, when placed in a lake, Koi can grow to three feet long. The metaphor is obvious. You are limited by how you see the world.” — Vince Poscente
Koi, of course, are more often known as the common goldfish. I’ve seen the above phenomenon play out when we’ve taken goldfish won at a carnival from a bowl on a shelf and moved them to our neighbor’s pond.
The funny thing about this self-limiting growth is that the fish is completely unaware of their environmental constraints. They simply grow into what ever is available to them. In a like manner, human beings grow into the space that’s available to them, often without being aware of the constraints others have placed on them. We grow up to meet the expectations that others — and ourselves — have of us.
A big difference between humans and fish, of course, is that the fish will never really be aware — whereas the human has the capacity to notice their environment and intentionally choose to change it.
Do you choose to live your life in a small or big way? And if you’re not happy with where you are, what are you doing about it?
In happiness, J