I Quit My Corporate Job and Discovered My True Self: The Transformative Journey of Tree Planting

tree planting bc canada

Like many people, I often fantasized about leaving the comfort of my familiar life behind and embarking on an adventure that would redefine who I am. In 2021, I finally had the opportunity to turn my daydreams into reality by moving from England to Canada. Little did I know that my decision to pursue a new life would lead me to a job that would change me in ways I never expected.

The Unexpected Path to Personal Growth

Related Posts: tree planting cumberland county

I found myself in a small logging town in the northern interior of British Columbia, camping in a gravel pit. This was not the glamorous adventure I had envisioned. My days began early, with breakfast at 6 a.m., followed by a truck ride to a remote location, and then the arduous task of tree planting – rain or shine.

Prior to that summer, I had never experienced anything more physically demanding than a short hike. However, the months of relentless work not only improved my physical fitness but also revealed a newfound inner strength. Tree planting showed me that we are all capable of enduring more and achieving greater freedom than we realize.

Tree Planting: A Grueling Challenge

In Canada, approximately 6,500 planters plant over 600 million trees each year. Although many people have a romanticized impression of the job, the reality is far more grueling. Even the BBC dedicated an episode of “World’s Toughest Jobs” to Canadian tree planting. Contrary to popular belief, these planters are not just a group of carefree individuals planting the occasional sapling.

Among the planters, there were students working to support their education or fund their travels, as well as career planters who engaged in other seasonal work such as cherry picking, firefighting, or brushing – clearing land with chainsaws to give young trees a fighting chance.

The physical toll of tree planting is astonishing. From the moment they fill their bags in the morning to the last tree planted at 5 p.m., planters burn an average of 8,000 calories per day – equivalent to running two and a half marathons. The pay is based on the number of trees planted, ranging from $0.12 to $0.20 per tree, depending on the terrain. Therefore, the incentive is to work quickly and efficiently.

During an average day, a skilled planter can put 2,000 trees in the ground, while an exceptional planter manages to plant 4,000. At the beginning of the season, I struggled to reach 600 trees. It seemed impossible to keep up with the more experienced planters.

Embracing a New Identity

Despite my initial struggles, I refused to give up. There were moments when I contemplated quitting, especially during the days of planting on challenging terrains, or when we had to replant due to errors. The departure of my closest friend added to the overwhelming urge to quit. However, I persevered. The woman who had left a new job after only two weeks became the sole crew member who completed the entire planting season.

On our final night, my foreman bestowed upon me the title of crew MVP. I had successfully planted an astonishing 41,520 trees. It was a moment of triumph and self-discovery. As we pulled up to the local bar in a white Ford 350 pickup – the unofficial vehicle of the logging industry – a group of tough pipeliners welcomed us with open arms, calling out “Planters!” in the same way one would exclaim “presents!”

Unleashing Our Hidden Strengths

My journey as a tree planter not only transformed my physical fitness but also reshaped my perspective on what I am capable of achieving. Through the challenges, I discovered a resilience and tenacity that I never knew existed within me.

Tree planting taught me that we all possess untapped potential waiting to be unleashed. It proved that we are capable of pushing ourselves beyond our perceived limits and accomplishing remarkable feats.

If you’re searching for an experience that will test your boundaries and unlock your hidden strengths, consider embarking on a journey of tree planting. Trust me, you may come back a completely different person, just as I did.

Tips Tree Planting is your go-to resource for all things related to tree planting and gardening. Visit our website to discover more insightful articles, tips, and techniques to help you create your own green oasis. Let your journey towards self-discovery and environmental stewardship begin!

Related Posts: memorial tree planting toronto