Go to the Ants - there is a lesson or two to learn

It is not enough to be busy, so are the Ants” The question is; “What are you busy about?”  Henry David Thoreau

Go to the ant thou sluggard. Consider its ways and be wise. Proverbs 6:6

At first thought, some people may find it pretty insulting if you asked them to go learn from the ant. From time memorial, ants have shown consistency in their approach to life and what isn’t there to learn from.

Have you ever spent a moment or two to watch a colony of ants at work? You will probably observe the following;

  • If you put obstacles along their path, you will find that they are quite flexible enough to either go underneath it, over it or around it.
  • No matter how hard you try to deter or stop them from doing anything, they never quit. At any given point in time, they try all that is possible and would struggle to overcome obstacles and carrying large food masses to the ant hill.
  • They have demonstrated a tremendous planning ability. In summer, it starts planning for winter, like building up the anthill, collecting food and so on. When winter arrives, it patiently waits for it to pass by and waits for summer.
  • Ants operate in a Team. Working together to heave obstacles off their path and forming long ant-chains to maneuver through difficult terrain is one interesting feature to note. While moving, ants exhibit the perfect coordination as a result of which the right feedback is sent to the ants following them on the path they are treading on.

The ant is an industrious creature, small in size, but wise in its ability to optimize its time, skills and resources. Such an amazing quality for a creature of that size!

Generally, the easiest way to live life is to learn from others’ past failures and accomplishments and the ants can teach us how they succeed time and time again.

There are many leading researchers, all around the world today, that are constantly discovering many new knowledgeable and technological facts about the lives of the ants.

It seems the more they study them the more they discover deeper mysteries and hidden secrets of just how much they resemble man in so many accurate ways.

The ant colony is filled with extreme wise qualities that are of exceptional and of fascinating proportions. Do an ant watch  and you will observe that the ants are works perfectly with one another. They have everything so well organized and neatly arranged. Each ant also has her due diligence of knowing how to keep their own nest clean and clear of wasted foods and the like. They even create their own fungus type food that is designed to be absorbed very cleverly within their stomachs.

So lets run through what it is to learn from the Ants;

Ants are driven by purpose

By purpose I mean having a clear long term objective or goal which shapes everything you do. For example, one ant’s sole job description is to find food for the colony. This is his purpose, and all that he inputs this time and energy into, and so it compounds his chances of success.

As a young person aspiring to succeed in life, you must be clear about your purpose in life and you must channel your energy to activities that serves that purpose. Consistency is a strong virtue very few people can lay claim to having, but having a purpose driven-life is one step away from success.

Diligent and hardworking

Ants teach us the value of hard work. Laziness does nothing but encourage us to procrastinate and remain in a state of lack and apathy. Ants are never lazy! Neither are they poor nor hungry! Their efforts and hard work sustains them! If we strive to be diligent and work hard, our lives will be blessed physically, spiritually and financially!

Ants work as a team

Ants are team workers and work together in order to achieve something great. Likewise, in order for you to achieve something substantial in life, you must align yourself with others who can help propel you to another level.

No one succeeds in life by doing things by themselves. We must align with other people, coaches, mentors, role models, leaders that can help us achieve our ultimate goal in life. These partners/team members must be carefully selected based on alignment with your vision, purpose of goal in life.

Can do attitude.

Ants exemplify what it means to be self-motivated. Size, lack and location are not limiting factors for them. They make no excuses and continue with the business of getting things done. No one has to whip them to move, do their work or to work together. They work for the common good. Moreover, they do not need a captain or a leader as they are disciplined and natural self-starters.

As budding leaders we must take initiative and demonstrate the right attitude to achieve our goals. Merely rising up to challenges and giving it our best shot is one sure fire way to make a difference.

Ants have a time to rest and a time to work

Ants have to work with the natural seasons. So in summer they gather their food and in winter they hibernate to conserve energy because of the lack of food. You need to know when to stop.

Burnout is when you have come to the end of yourself and suddenly give up and withdraw from all kinds of work. You’ve simply had enough. In order for this not to happen you need to schedule in periods of rest, especially after the completion of a major project.

Ants think big

Now ants can seem like one of the most insignificance insects on the planet because of their size. But the colonies they build and the contribution to their society is extremely significant and great.

What big dreams do you have for your future? Pursue those. No matter how small you think you are, you should always pursue something bigger than yourself. Challenge yourself, push the boundaries, redefine the norm and create your own success story. Success doesn’t come from the place of your comfort zone and any dream that doesn’t stretch you is just a task.

Ants prepare ahead of time

Ants prepare in their food in summer because they know that there will be a time when there will be no food to find in winter time. So they are constantly preparing for a season which is yet to come upon them.

Ants have faith that after the winter, there would be summer. Even when they planned for the dark winter, their faith that a glorious summer is in the offing is worthy of emulation. Otherwise they would not plan ahead.

Excellent strategic planning, precision and organization skills are important aspect of life that we can learned from the ants. A good plan helps to attain the ultimate purpose in life. You cannot plan for short, medium or long term if you do not have a clear vision and purpose. And planning helps you manage resources during the uncertain periods in life when things don’t go according to plan.

Ants carry workloads they can handle

Although they are small, ants can handle up to one hundred times their weight. They know their limitations. All too often we say ‘yes’ to things that we can’t do and take on responsibilities that we struggle to fulfil. All we need to do is know our boundaries and never venture beyond that point.

Ants serve one another

Living for just yourself is a lonely existence. Serving people goes that one step further and asks ‘what can I do for you?’ You start to live beyond yourself and purposefully contribute positively to others.

When few ants in a colony are infected by a fungal disease, they spread the disease throughout the colony, by licking it off one another, with each ant receiving as much of the disease that their individual immune system can fight off effectively.

Furthermore, ants feed one another in a most sharing way. Whenever one of them finds food they immediately inform the rest of the ant colony. No hoarding for individuals or for self.

Need I say more?


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1 thought on “Go to the Ants”

  1. Adedamola Ilori

    It’s incredible to know ants handle about 100 times their weight,not sure as a human I can handle as much as my weight

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