Who’d have thought gardening could teach me so many life lessons?
I’d planted Zinnia seeds in the shape of the word JOY in my garden. More seeds came up than anticipated. In order for flowers to bloom optimally, they need space in between. So, on Saturday morning, I set out to decide which stems stayed and which I would need to pull.
I settled in, sitting Indian style facing the plants. I love Zinnias. It hurt to have to pull any up, especially because they all looked so healthy. But I had to. If I didn’t they stood a really good chance of being overrun by powdery mildew. Also, the plants would crowd out and it would stunt all of them. In order for them to bloom it was necessary.
I thought about my own life. My calendar looked much like my garden. I had always rejected the notion of creating space in my day, believing that life is short. You have to squeeze in all you can. But what if by cramming in so much, I am missing out on the most beautiful blooms I might produce?
How might this principle apply to my life?
I am blessed with a DOING spirit. I can get more done in one hour than most accomplish in a day. The curse that accompanies this blessing is that I feel guilty if I don’t get ‘stuff’ done. I feel like I am not ‘earning my keep’ unless I have ‘product’ to show for it. A list of things completed to prove I served well.
In my day job, I am the boss. I don’t need to prove anything. And yet, a cloud looms over me with the limiting belief that I do. Ironic that this belief might be the one thing standing in my way of blooming beyond anything I have ever dreamed.
If I were to replace it, what might a new belief look like? Hmmm . . . the picture of a gorgeous Zinnia comes to mind. As it grows, it merely reaches for the sky, taking in the sunlight, water and nutrients from the soil.
How peaceful to consider modeling my life after that magnificent flower.
Centering myself. Recognizing my value in being and not in doing. Taking time to enjoy the moment and not ‘make it matter’. It already does.
Trusting that I will intuitively know how to handle whatever life serves me. Staying focused on what brings me joy. Identifying what I am most grateful for each day. Taking care of me. Not as a way of over-compensating for running myself ragged. As a way of savoring today.
Recognizing that some of the things I will need to let go of are really good things that I won’t want to let go of. But my life is too full, and I need to make room. Just like pulling the perfectly healthy Zinnia stems did. Realizing that it is for the best in order for me to truly bloom into who I was put here to be.
Blooming ON purpose sure does hurt sometimes. But it’s worth it.
Cheri Neal is a dynamic professional speaker, trainer, coach and public service professional. She mixes a powerfully refreshing blend of education, energy and entertainment, engaging participants with right-on-time concepts for enhancing their lives at work, home and in their communities. Contact Cheri today to see how she can support YOU at http://www.CheriNeal.com.