The Law of the Farm

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A diploma is like a driver's license. It remains to be seen how well you do on the road.

The Law of the Farm

When I earned my university degree many years ago, I thought I "finished" my education. In fact, it had just begun. A diploma compares to a driver's license; how good you drive remains to be seen on the road. The degree is mere proof that I produced acceptable results tackling "the curriculum" - exams, papers, projects, etc. - simply a set of obstacles conjured by my school. 

When I began working, I learned the "real" skills. Like, making a decision when information is incomplete or unavailable, or presenting an unpopular decision in a tense negotiation meeting, or smothering three crises at the same time, or accepting full responsibility for a costly mistake. It's nothing close to school. 

Life's curriculum is much tougher. The lessons are hidden, projects have no instructions, exams come unexpectedly, and results surface in the form of consequences with lasting effects. But now I can tackle any obstacle in front of me, conjured or not.

My point: life abides by the Law of the Farm*. You prepare the soil, you plant the seeds, you water, nurture, and protect it patiently and finally you harvest. THERE ARE NO SHORT-CUTS. The Law of the Farm applies to nearly every endeavor, from starting a business to house-training your dog. It certainly applies to all the important aspects of your life. Should you sacrifice immediate gratification for a bountiful harvest? You decide. 

Take your health, for example. If you've neglected it over the years, is there a way to BECOME INSTANTLY HEALTHY next week? You need time; you need discipline to embrace new habits. But, if you start now, your eventual "harvest" will be an energetic and prolonged life. Will you give up munching potato chips or puffing cigarettes for this?

What else would be worth it? How about your financial stability? Or your family, your love life, your friendships? How about the practice of your faith? 

Decide it's worth it. Decide to take action. This, you can do instantly. 

- Ramon Regozo

* As discussed in Dr. Stephen Covey's program, Principle-centered Leadership. More at




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Last modified: December 11, 2006