The Chinese Farmer…

There’s a story about a Chinese Farmer which is so inspirational I had to right this post.  So, whoever put this together – cudo’s to you – its a great analogy on life and getting a firm perspective on circumstances which will encourage growth.

For those unfamiliar with the story: There was a Chinese farmer who tended to his crops. One day, while he was working, his only horse broke out of the stable and galloped away.

The village people came to his hut that night expressing their dismay at the set of circumstances the farmer found himself in – ‘oh no! That was your only horse to help you tend to the field and help your workload! – You must be so upset’

‘Maybe’… – the Chinese farmer replied

The next day the farmer started on his daily chores of running the farmland and he heard a galloping sound in the distance. He looked around and there he saw to his astonshment 7 wild horses galloping towards his farm including the one which had escaped the day before. As the horses came onto his farm, they found their way into the stable being led by the farmers horse. The farmer acted quickly and closed the gate behind them to secure them in.


The village neighbours came to his hut that night. This time they were ready to celebrate. ‘Wow, they cried! What good fortune! Now you have 7 horses to help you crop and farm – who would of thought such a great situation could come about! You must be so happy!’

‘Maybe’… – The Chinese Farmer responded.

The next day the farmer’s son believed they needed to quickly break-in the horses and ready them for work on the farm. As he mounted the first wild horse, he was thrown 2 meters into the air. Upon landing he broke his left leg and was helped back to the hut by his father who was tending to a nearby crop and saw the situation. He help his son inside the hut and began to mend and set his broken leg.

Again, the village neighbours came to his hut that night. With broken hearts, they expressed their dismay at the new set of circumstances. “You must be so sad, your son is bed-ridden and you have no one left to help you on the farm. You  must be so upset!

‘Maybe’…The  Chinese Farmer responded….

The following day there came a knock at the door. Army subscription officers were taking all able young men off to join the Chinese Imperial Army. They saw the young man in bed with a broken leg and didn’t take him.

The Village Neighbours came over in the evening seeing the subscription officers earlier in the day. ‘Wow what good fortune! Your son was spared from joining the army! You must be so happy!’

‘Maybe’….The Chinese Farmer responded with a half smile.

The moral of the story: Everything that seems on the surface to be a windfall isn’t isn’t always the case. And consequently, everything that occurs which seems to be bad luck or unfavourable isn’t always negative.

Every situation we enter into has an outcome which we cannot immediatly see. Every job we apply for, every opportunity we take-up or miss, every person we meet, are all there to offer us a lesson on growth and understanding.

Aside from our business world dealings, where we see room for opportunity – we must also encapsulate the knowledge that every outcome, however favourable or unfavourable may have an unusual outcome.

Knowing this gives us perspective and flexibility through our journey for personal and professional growth.


Barry x

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