I discovered the other day that the little patch of plants I was so lovingly caring for were, in fact, weeds! I had planted some cabbage seeds and mistakenly thought they were my little cabbages until the weeds got bigger and I realized my mistake 🙂 Being a novice gardener, I am learning all the time!
My mistake then had me thinking about my own life and what ‘weeds’ I am cultivating.
Some of the weeds in our life can grow rampant and totally overtake all the sweet, good things; whilst others may pop up here and there and make a slower transition into a fully grown weed.
Sometimes, we may not realize we are cultivating our weeds as weeds can look like something else entirely – just like my cabbage patch. It’s not until they start to grow and choke the good things that we recognize the damage that the weed is doing. And by then, it takes more effort to get the weeds under control. If they are a very bad pest, it can take a longer time to totally eradicate the weed.
Are your sweet, good things in life being choked by weeds?
You may realize you have a weed when you feel discontent, or unhappiness or unease in your life. Here’s how to discover your weeds and eradicate them (I recommend you download and print out the worksheet at the end of the list to help you further):
1. Pinpoint an area in your life where you feel that something isn’t right… be specific. For example, if you are unhappy in your job or business, don’t write that down. Delve deeper to identify what specifically you are unhappy about. If you leave it too vague you won’t be able to find the weed.
2. Once you have identified the source of your unhappiness, or discontent or unease, spend some time reflecting on when you began to feel that way so you can associate the timeline with a decision you may have made at that point in time.
3. Next step is to identify the decision you made that led you to the path you are now on – the path that seems to have a few weeds in the cracks. Sometimes, we make decisions with very good intentions, and that may serve us very well at that point in time. But as you know, we don’t stand still; therefore, a decision you made some time ago may no longer be serving you.
4. Spend some time reflecting on the decision you made and why it no longer serves you. What is different NOW? Are you the same person you were when you made the decision?
5. Determine where the weeds are growing. From the timeline that you recognized in Step 2 to the point where you are now at in your life, what have you been doing to cultivate your weeds? Remember, weeds can sometimes be disguised as pretty flowers… we may initially think they are okay, so we pour a lot of water on them and fertilize and nurture them, then suddenly, BAM! They’re massive and we realize the pretty flower was a pest that is now encroaching on the values we hold dear in our life.
6. Next, determine what steps you can take to remove the weed (or weeds) from your life. Take the approach you feel is necessary for your particular circumstance. For instance, a weed that is the source of your unhappiness, or discontent or unease may be one that you can immediately pour some weed killer on and quickly eradicate it from your beautiful garden (which is your life, your mind, your wellbeing). As an example, this may be an activity you are doing which you can quickly stop all together without any other ramifications to your life. On the other hand, another type of weed may be growing right next to something you value very deeply – if you were to pour weed killer it may very well kill off whatever is sitting next to it. So it requires you to spend more time in manually digging out each weed, taking care to preserve the other things next to the weed. The weed pulling exercise may take many forms – including (but not limited to) meditation, reflections, journaling, personal development, mentoring, and coaching; it’s important you find the forms that work best for you.
7. Lastly, celebrate your courage and commitment in completing Steps 1 to 6. Take time to thank your higher self for supporting you on your weeding journey and reflect on the gifts that the weeds actually gave you.