What I learned after spending six weeks watering a fake plant

Made to crave

Day 12

Before my aunt Roberta passed away in 2018, she spent a few months in the hospital. My assignment was to go to her home every week to water her plants.

Like clockwork, I would go to her liberty Street second-floor apartment, find an empty jug to fill with water and then proceed to water them, 4 in all.

2 small plants and 2 larger plants (or so I thought).

Then one day I was visiting her in the hospital and she asked how her plants were doing. I told her the 2 plants in the kitchen were fine, but that one of the plants in the living room looked really dry. The one by the TV.

“The one by the TV is fake,” she said.

Then I realized: I had been watering a fake plant for almost a month! I had spent time and energy on something that was not even alive,


This prompted me to start thinking: How many other “dead” things (relationships, special projects, etc.) was I “watering” that were dead?

How many special projects and activities was I spending my valuable time on that would NEVER bear fruit? Sure, they may look great, but what are they actually producing?

This is a hard inventory to do because the result will always be someone’s feelings being hurt (maybe even your own!) because you can no longer serve in a way that you were able to before. But it is necessary if we hope to have the energy and resources to fully take care of the things in our life that actually have growth potential.

And more importantly, things in our life that align with our purpose.

What are you watering?

When will you stop?



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