It’s a new year, and with a renewed focus on my calendar I’m recognizing the timing of things right now in a deeper sort of way.  There seems to be some secret sauce to timing, with some master chef in charge of it all. Have you ever watched a fruit tree ripen? I know it’s a jump but bear with me. We have this small tangerine tree in our backyard. I believe the correct term, horticulture wise, is dwarf fruit tree. It’s also small because it doesn’t really get enough sun year-round to grow much larger, but it does bare fruit, and those tangerines are ripening right now. Something quite beautiful occurs with the growth process of a tangerine – there’s a sudden ripening after months of growing. It starts off green, and over time begins to turn orange, and eventually in what seems rather sudden timing wise, the fruit becomes bright orange, plump, and ripe, and picking it becomes a joyous celebration of the timing of life. And the taste, well, sorry grocery stores and maybe some farmer’s markets, the taste of just picked fresh off the tree fruit is divine. There’s nothing else like it. The fruit has its moment and shows us what that is with bright color and perfect flavor.

Life, and the process of living are very much the same.

I’m not implying we’re all tangerines – literally – but their ripening process is absolutely similar to our own. God knows I can be incredibly impatient. But the truth is everyone and everything has its own process of timing. Time takes time. You may have heard that phrase, and it’s true, it does. And you can’t rush any of it. I believe this is one of the great secrets of life. Our ego likes to think it has the power to control things but in reality, it does not. Don’t get me wrong, the ego will do everything it can to run the show, and sometimes it does manage to produce, but the result is never quite as rich or ripe as giving something its due time.

The same holds true for us as people.

We owe ourselves, I believe, the dignity of our own process, whatever the timing of that looks like.

Our process of learning, growth, and personal evolution all have a particular time frame based on each one of us. No one’s timing is the same. Timeframes, yes, but not precise personal timing. For some reason relationships come to mind here for me. Maybe it’s just my many years of trial and error. When one begins to date, it’s important to allow time for getting to know one another. Spend some real time together before you move in, or get engage, or married. Love grows and ripens in its own time. Don’t pick the fruit of love too soon – it might be sour as it needs time to blossom.

Plant your seeds in the appropriate season, tend to them, and then watch as they grow in their own unique timing.

Make note and remember. Then apply this experiential process to all parts of your life, and watch in wonderment as your life becomes sweeter, more colorful, and at the same time more serene. See if you can sense the timing of your life. It’s there, all you need do is take a few deep breathes, close your eyes, and let go. Let go and let God, and then watch as the magic of timing unfolds your life and your world in a way no human could possibly orchestrate. It’s a co-creative process with God and the Universe, ripe for the picking. But don’t take my word for it. Run the experiment. See if there really is such a thing as the secret sauce of timing. Something tells me you’ll find it at just the right moment, and when you do, life itself will become sweeter.

Barry Alden Clark is a writer and professional life coach. His work is focused on helping people live their best lives by acting as a guide for them to connect more deeply with their internal life force where creativity, purpose, and true freedom reside, while using humor, compassion, and kindness as hallmarks for the process of personal evolution. Recently Barry published his first book, “Living Life Now: Ingredients for Thriving In The Modern World,” now available on Amazon, and launched his new podcast “Living Life Now,” available on iTunes, Spotify and Google Music. You can reach Barry at

Image courtesy of Any Lane.