I read two interesting posts this week about how gardening can be a good metaphor for living a good life. (It must be the time of year ;-)
"If you have a lot of weeds in your life, consider the fact that ripping them out might be hard, but isn’t it always more beautiful to wake up to a great looking garden than a bare wasteland?"
On Breathing Prosperity Ophelia talks about how your life reflects the seeds you planted - have you cared for your plants or allowed weeds to grow? - in Life is like a box of chocolates... no, it's like gardening
"Treat each plant the way it wants to be treated. Some plants crave nitrogen, some magnesium, some potassium, some a mixture, and some prefer neutrality. While you can make generalities, treat every plant the same, and have an average garden, you can treat each plant the way it wants to be treated and have a fabulous garden."
Both these posts resonated deeply with me, and probably because I wrote a similar article for my ezine last year (and round about this time). And so I was inspired to dig it out and post it here:
It's amazing what happens to sickly plants when we add a little water, prune away the dead branches, and perhaps add a little plant food. With just a little care and attention, most perennial plants will come back to life, and thrive and grow again.
Do you nurture your own life like a gardener would his plants, or do you neglect some areas? If it’s the latter try applying some gardening principles to your life and you could be amazed at the results.
During the flowering season, it’s important to keep an eye on wilting blossoms, and gently remove them from the dead petals. Doing this allows a new flower to bloom in its place. Ignoring it results in the decay spreading down the stalk and to the rest of the plant. The good news though, is that even if decay does set in, the plant can recover – clip away the dead parts of the plant and new growth will sprout forth!
What areas of your life are suffering? Do you have energy vampires? Devoting energy to activities that drain you of energy instead of boosting your reserves will detract from your ability to enjoy your life. And tolerating energy drains on an ongoing basis will, in the long term, have a detrimental effect on your physical or mental health.
If you recognize that an activity (or a person) is draining your energy, do something about it. How bad is the situation? Does is need a little gentle dead-heading or is some drastic pruning required? Whatever is needed, putting it off only delays your recovery. Avoiding dealing with it altogether will inevitably lead to your demise (maybe not physically, but certainly energetically and emotionally, and that’s serious enough to warrant your attention!)
Sometimes you don’t have to give up on an activity altogether, you just need to alter your care routine. With plants you might move it to a lighter or shadier position, increase or decrease the amount of watering you give it. In life, adjusting the time you spend in one area can have dramatic results. Reducing time in one area frees up time to give attention to other activities.
Some plants simply need regular pruning in order to thrive. The same applies to different activities in life. Do what is right for you at the time it is right. And when the time comes that it starts to feel a chore, and you’re resentful of not having as much time as you’d like for another activity, then release yourself from the obligation to continue. Free yourself up to plant new seeds and watch what grows.
The one thing that’s for sure, if things aren’t feeling right adjustments do need to be made.
“If you always do what you’ve always done, you’ll always get what you’ve always got.” ~ Unknown
So take a look at your life, decide what attention is required, and give it.