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Mary, Mary, Quite Contrary is a popular nursery rhyme about gardening. Mary grows silver bells, cockle shells and pretty maids in her “fantasy garden”.
If you have ever tried your hand at gardening, you know that there’s something enjoyable and frustrating about the entire process. Basically, plants need sunlight, water, and some tender love and care to properly grow and flourish.
If you really think about it, the same principles can be said about our own self-growth. There are similar principles that we must abide by to avoid stagnation. We should appreciate the process that a seed or a seedling goes through to become a beautiful, sometimes edible plant and take heed of the lessons they have to offer us.
Lesson #1 Reshape Your Personal Perception
When a flower is healthy, it stands tall representing confidence and strength. It allows the sun to bask in its beauty.
Similarly, when we feel good about ourselves, we demonstrate that same confidence. In order to grow in a strong manner, you have to eliminate negative self-perception. You must see yourself as valuable, capable, and highly skilled. By doing so, you will begin to behave in a way that aligns with your self-affirmations.
Lesson #2 Embrace New Concepts
When a plant begins to wither, even when given adequate water and light, they may be unhappy in their present environment. By moving them to another area of the home, they may begin to thrive again.
Comparably, if we never embrace anything new, we will become stagnant in our thinking. There is much to be learned from trying new things, meeting new people, and immersing yourself in a new culture.
Lesson #3 Challenge Yourself-Sit in Discomfort
The greatest gain comes from extreme discomfort. When a terrible storm ensues, plants in a garden cannot pick up their roots and run for shelter. Rather, they have to endure the storm and accept what is to come.
In the same manner, when we endure obstacles, we are strengthening ourselves. It is easy to give up and walk away from something difficult.
But, what would you learned from walking away?
In essence, you are inhibiting evolution. In every difficult situation there is a valuable lesson. Stick it out, and you’ll begin to see a strength you never knew you had.
Lesson #4 Eliminate Toxic Relationships
When plants have dead leaves or weeds growing in their area, that rot tends to move upward; thus, overtaking the plant. Gardeners must clip away the dead ends in order to save the future of the plant.
When you keep unhealthy individuals in your life, their bad habits will eventually rub off on you. They won’t encourage you to broaden your mind or leave behind old habits. Have the courage to notice who in your life is toxic and walk away from them with urgency!
Lesson #5 Accept What You Can’t Control
Plants can’t control when they get watered. They can’t control when the weeds are removed. Neither can they control when they get sunlight. They accept the situations for what they are and react accordingly. As for plants, that may mean they grow and thrive or wither and die.
Likewise, in our lives, we encounter situations that are beyond our control. We may try our best to manipulate the conditions, but that ultimately leaves us with anxiety.
In order to grow and flourish, you have to accept people and situations for what they are. You are only in control of how you react. Learn to regulate your emotions and embrace spontaneity.
Lesson #6 Stray From Inactivity
Although, it’s not visibly apparent, plants are active organisms. According to the website Metal Floss, plants are active in 5 ways:
- Plants can call for help.
- Plants can eavesdrop.
- Plants can defend their territory.
- Plants can recognize their siblings.
- Plants can communicate with mammals.
For us, sometimes it’s easy to remain stagnant while wishing for an opportunity to occur. Wishes only turn into reality through taking action. If there is something you are desiring to do, eliminate unnecessary brainstorming and begin to create. Accomplish the items on your list without making excuses. By doing so, you will see what you are truly capable of.
Lesson #7 Nurture Yourself Thoroughly
Plants and flowers require care from outside sources to survive. We as humans have the ability to nurture ourselves through self-care. Designate a few minutes each day to taking care of yourself. Indulge in an activity you love, pamper yourself, or take a moment to relax. You will restore your energy without having a meltdown!
Personal growth is a beautiful part of life as it challenges our mind and body to perform in surprising ways. Embrace growth and never fear the endless possibilities associated with it. Soon, you will appreciate the time and care directed towards your self-improvement.
And I guarantee that you will never walk by a beautiful plant or garden without appreciating the lessons they can teach us.