By Michelle Porchia
Life Lessons from Gardening
Last year I moved in to a small house. Besides it being my home, I have a patio and a porch. In the spring of 2020, I grew herbs (basil, oregano, thyme, rosemary and sage.) Unexpectedly, I did really well. Basil is a seasonal herb. Surprisingly my basil lasted from late April through the end of September. I nurtured the other herbs through the winter.
This year I have a container garden. I’m growing the same herbs with hope for more success with my basil and rosemary plants. I’ve also added parsley to my gardening menu. I now have a raised garden bed. This will allow me to garden more easily. This year I am experimenting with growing Japanese eggplant, banana peppers, yellow peppers, tomatoes and a walking onion. I also have several potted coleus and two succulents.
Where are the lessons? I’m glad you asked.
2020 was a trying year. I found enjoyment in growing herbs that I nurtured and used to make savory meals. 2021 is a new year. I enjoy waking up and looking out of my bedroom window and seeing my “Zen Garden.” This year, I explored new territory by expanding my gardening knowledge and trying to grow vegetables. As a speaker, I’ve spoken (via Zoom) in venues I hadn’t considered. It was an honor to speak for my high school alma mater, twice. I am now looking into new areas of interest. I’m taking my time and planting the seeds, just like my garden. I’m excited to see what blooms.
Nancy J. Lewis, MS, SHRM-CP PHR, RCC
So often, we make excuses why we don't do certain things in our life. When we do this, we often
delay walking into our destiny and adversely impact our integrity level. Consider the following five strategies the next time you find yourself making an excuse.
1. Be honest with yourself.
It is important to look at yourself in the mirror and have a heart to heart and admit you have a problem. Don't continue to deny this is an area in your life you are okay with and hope it will simply go away without you addressing it. Others know you are making excuses, and it is time you face it also. It is important to state the problem out loud, acknowledging you recognize this is a problem you are going to fix. It is helpful to solicit the assistance of a trusted friend that will hold you accountable when you find yourself making excuses.
2. Set realistic expectations.
Before you make commitments and say yes to something--even something small--ask yourself if you truly believe you can and will follow through. Some people set unrealistic goals and then fail in accomplishing their commitment. It is critical to have forethought and count the cost of what you are committing to. Look at the time constraints, the magnitude of the task and then make an informed decision. Sometimes you have to say no, and that is okay. It is better to say no than to repeatedly say yes and fall short of what you have committed to. Doing what you say you will do speaks to your level of integrity. Integrity is a lot easier to maintain than regain. So think before you commit!
3. Stop whining and start winning.
Stop complaining about what you don't have and making negative confessions. It is so important to count your blessings and know that you win when you begin to speak positive statements of faith. Be slow to speak and swift to hear, and if what you are going to say is not in line with what you want to see manifest in your life, don't say it. Choose to move from whining about life and get in the game of winning in life. Become your own best cheerleader recognizing that greatness lives inside of you.
4. Take charge of what you need to do.
Just determine in your heart that whatever you need to do to succeed, you will do. Be in charge of your life by making the right decisions and taking action on the goals you have set for yourself. Challenge yourself to know that you have skills, talents, and abilities inside you to make your dreams a reality. Don't look for others to do the things you need to do. Commit to what needs to be done and then do it.
5. Be solution-centered.
Instead of focusing on your problem, begin to look at the possible solutions. What you focus on becomes greater, so why not focus on ways to resolve your situation? Be willing to ask for help from those individuals who have knowledge and skills that can help you. Don't let pride and ego keep you from getting valuable insight and wisdom from those who can shorten your learning curve and provide you with helpful solutions to the challenges you face. Choose to use your energy focusing on solutions and then be willing to take responsibility for your life.
Book Debra, Michelle, Nancy or Carole for your next speaking engagement or training event.