What color are your roots?

A couple of months ago I wrote a blog post and did a podcast about your origin story.

I define an “origin story” as “an account or back-story revealing how you become a protagonist or antagonist in your own life and how it adds to the overall interest and complexity of a narrative you call your life.”

Your origin story includes a set of roots.

Your roots include a particular place you come from and the experiences and jobs you have had living there.

Your roots include your values, your beliefs, your boundaries and the lines that define your personal, professional and educational experiences.

What color are your roots?

My roots are blue.


My dad was a carpenter, a blue collar worker. He wore a hard had and carried a metal lunch box to work.

Photo: Stephen Lesavich

One of my grandfathers worked in the steel mills in Gary, Indiana.

The other grandfather worked in the Nash car factories in Kenosha, Wisconsin.

I have worked as an unskilled worker as janitor, construction laborer, an urban forestry department worker, bartender and dishwasher in my life in what are considered “blue collar” jobs.

I have also worked as a professional software engineer, university professor and attorney in what are considered “white color” jobs.

To be accurate, my roots are actually light blue. A mixture of blue and white.

Your roots keep you grounded, but can also keep you anchored in place.

There are many sayings and quotes about “roots and wings.”

Here is mine.

“Remember your roots, but always use your wings.”

Stephen Lesavich, PhD

Your roots give you a sense of belonging, a home base and your wings give the chance to grow and expand as a person and your independence.

Podcast: What Color Are Your Roots?

How can remember your roots but use your wings?

  1. Acknowledge your roots.  Acknowledge with appreciation, where you were born, where you grew up, where you went to grade school, middle school, high school, college, etc. what you learned from your parents, siblings and family, what your grandparents and parents did for a living.  Acknowledge the comfort zone and your personal boundaries which include your own individual internal and external physical, emotional, psychological, sexual and spiritual boundaries. Your personal boundaries are actually a set of behavioral constructs that define and predict how you will react to every situation you encounter in your daily life. 
  2. Define your wings.  Your wings include a new set of boundaries and a new set of risks.  One way to define your wings is determine if you are an “explorer” or an “exploiter.” In psychology, there is what’s known as an “explore/exploit” tradeoff.  An “exploiter” chooses a less risky, well-defined path going for a guaranteed “win” as a predicable experience. The “explorer” chooses a more risky, less well defined path to an unknown outcome as an unpredictable adventure.
  3.  Pull Up Anchor and Use Your Wings.  Your roots include a virtual or energetic anchor that keeps in anchored in place.  Your roots may also keep your stuck in a three-foot world.  Save a set of virtual coordinates to your roots (i.e., remember where you came from) then pull up your energetic anchor. View yourself from a new higher vantage point, from that of a neutral observer using discernment.  Use your wings to soar, expand, grow, lengthen your lines and evolve as a person.

Remembering your roots but using your wings allows you to positive impact in your own life and live the life your truly desire.

Out There on the Edge of Everything® …

Stephen Lesavich, PhD

Copyright © 2023, by Stephen Lesavich, PhD.  All rights reserved.

Certified solution-focused life coach and experienced business coach.