Hi! Over the last year or so, I’ve become quite the gardener. It all started with a little herb garden on the kitchen windowsill, then I bought some succulents and now I am the weird flatmate asking all my friends not to throw away their yogurt jars and anything that could possibly be used as a planting container. Never, in my wildest dreams, did I think that I’d enjoy gardening as much as I do, but it is my “new thing” and the beginning of a lifelong hobby. In fact, I went as far as to order 40 rose bushes, but that is beside the point right now.
Gardening really is one of the best hobbies a person can pick up and it will challenge you in a way that another may not. It goes without saying, that there is something sublime about getting your hands dirty and leaving a patch of earth with the expectation of finding baby plants emerging from the ground when you return in a couple of days. Not having the proverbial green thumb should not be an excuse, and neither should gardening be reserved for 60-year-old Myrtle living out in the country, it can be done without any difficulty even in the tightest of spaces.
Here are 5 life lessons I learned while gardening:
1. Sowing seeds is an act of faith. Nothing is guaranteed from the moment you gently press the seed into the ground. All that is left to do is to believe that that little seed is the beginning of new life. The funny thing is that the most important part of the process is the prep work- choosing the right soil and then giving the seed the conditions it needs to germinate. We all need faith and watering is the least we can do when in the end we can look forward to the time when we’ll see the tiniest speck of green emerging from the ground making its way towards the light.
2. You can plant seeds at the same time, but not all come up at the same time. Just like in life there are times, when everything will not go according to your plan and you will not be able to concentrate on as many things as you would like to and that is OK. Learn to take control where it is needed and trust that the rest will make an appearance in its own time and bear fruit when the season is right.
3. Weeding is important. Soil often times does not only contain the seeds you have sown, but also has weed seeds competing for the nutrients, just like there are many different things competing for your attention in life. Don’t let the little things you encounter every day overwhelm you and grow into bigger issues, instead focus on finding the root of the problem and do a bit of diligent weeding.
4. There’s always something that can be shared with a friend or given to a stranger. As a child, I remember that during the summers we’d have people pulling up in front of out yard and asking my mom for plants, flowers or tips on how to grow different types of plants. She never once turned anyone away and glowed with pride as she gave a tour of the garden and was able to share the bounty. It’s important to share, whether it may be a tip, word of encouragement or a flower to make a person smile- everything counts.
5. Nothing teaches you more about time than watching plants grow. There is an uncertain beginning where you tend to a seedling with nurturing love and you get reminded that patience truly is a virtue as you anticipate the first bloom, then you see the plant mature and die back into a seed with a promise of new life. It’s a privilege to witness something so beautiful and be reminded of the importance of different seasons. Embrace the present and every season of life, don’t be afraid of change because it almost always signifies growth.
Are there any life lessons you learned or were reminded of while spending time on a hobby you love? [Continue Reading…]