Important Lessons From Gardening About Life And Mindfulness
The glory of gardening: hands in the dirt, head in the sun, heart with nature. To nurture a garden is to feed not just on the body, but the soul. – Alfred Austin
Getting back to nature is a great way to practice self-care. So is developing hobbies. Hobbies encourage growth, teach us lessons, and give us mental and emotional space to take on the stresses of the day.
Gardening is a favorite hobby of many, and combines both the benefits of time outdoors, with rewarding challenges. But you probably did not know that you learn lessons from Gardening about life and mindfulness you can carry with you everywhere you go.
1. How To Reframe Your Actions
Gardening is a lot of hard work, but it can lead to many rewards. It doesn’t make the prospect of digging in the dirt, or spending hours digging out weeds any more pleasurable. But it is a hobby that comes with a lot of little chores.
Looking at the unpleasant task of weeding, as a way to help healthy plants grow strong and beautiful, rather than an unpleasant chore will help you reframe the situation. And you’ll love the result! The act of reframing unpleasant tasks isn’t unique to the garden, but gardening is a unique opportunity to practice it.
No part of it is necessary for survival or health. But to grow healthy, beautiful flowers in your yard, and delicious food for your family takes a lot of work. Embracing the work is a transferable skill that you can use the next time the steps of your workload get you down!
2. Everyone Has Their Growing Season
Gardening is one-part hard work, one-part hope, and one-part timing. And everything has a season. It’s lousy gardening practice to plant tomatoes in winter, even indoors.
Understanding your garden’s unique needs, getting to know the soil, weather conditions, and habits of the plants that you’re working with will help you be more successful. Just like in the garden, knowing your own learning style, habits, and stumbling blocks, will help you succeed in other areas of your life. Learn to appreciate what you do well, and stop striving to bloom in the wrong season!
3. Alone Time Is Valuable
Spending time in nature is a great anti-depressant! Studies have shown that working in nature can help with anxiety, and produce endorphins to stave off depression and even raise self-esteem.
Hiking, running, and gardening are great ways to get needed fresh air. It’s also a great solo activity. No one can be social or on all the time, and gardening is great for developing patience and helps you spend needed time in contemplation with yourself. Not everyone is great at being alone, but having something to focus your mind and your hands can help you build up the skill.
4. The Value Of A New Perspective
Gardening teaches you to look at things from a new perspective! Specifically, from an on-the-ground perspective.
Your plants and flowers are entirely dependent on you to keep them healthy. The best way to get rid of pests or weeds is to take a bug-eyed view. Get down in the dirt, and see the world in a way that you haven’t before. You’ll soon learn the ins and outs of how weeds grow, and where and how pests get in. A new perspective is helpful for learning about problem-solving. It works in the garden, but it’s also an excellent way to tackle new projects, take on new challenges, and face complications in your life. It all begins with a new perspective!
5. Sometimes, You Have To Wait
As we have mentioned, spending time in the garden gives us the opportunity to appreciate that everything has its growing season. Beyond teaching the value of patience and understanding that we all bloom in our own time, gardening is all about growing, yourself and your garden.
When you’re starting out, it’s a good idea to begin with forgiving plants. Tomatoes and peppers are a great beginner vegetable, while pansies and sunflower make great first-time flowers. As you get more experience and really fall in love with gardening, you might choose to specialize in more difficult or complex gardens. Roses are an art all their own. And only the most patient, and sometimes, tenacious gardeners get to that level.
Gardening is a rewarding hobby, that helps you understand the value of growing your skills in the direction you’re aiming for while teaching you the importance of patience
6. The Value Of Optimism
You wouldn’t think that gardening is a complicated endeavor, but whether you’re a beginner, or you’ve been at it for a while, there are new challenges every season.
Some years, the weather works against you. Others, that patch of lawn you think has been bare too long flatly refuses to grow anything, no matter how much time and energy you spend on it. Sometimes, plants that are labeled “easy” in the garden center don’t agree with your usual watering and feeding schedule.
Gardening is about problem-solving, trying new things, and above all, believing it will work out in the end. Life is a little like that, isn’t it? You can work as hard as you can, and sometimes, the problem is the weather, the ground you’re standing on, or the people around you. All you can do is do the work, keep your head tilted toward the sun, and hope for the best!
Gardening is a gift that keeps on giving! Whether you’re growing herbs, fruits and vegetables to feed your family, or beautiful flowers and plants to give back to the environment and make something beautiful in your space. But the practical parts are just the beginning. If you look for them, there are plenty of life lessons to be found in your garden, about patience, problem-solving, perseverance and even more. So pick up your gardening tools, and spend some time digging in the dirt. You just might find some peace of mind!
About the Author
Thank you for reading, I’m Ken Hyden. Avid gadget geek and charming introvert. I founded the popular Bestseekers.com, where I help people find the best things, including many home improvement and garden tools. In my spare time, I try my hand at new construction projects for my home….that I never finish.