I love plants, and my house is full of them. Plants make a place feel more like a “home”. They bring life, peace, and color to a space. I also enjoy the process of caring for them, watering them, removing dead leaves, and determining how to help them thrive.
For several years, I have had a plant that was doing fine. It was in a small 4” pot. Recently, I realized that I had a larger 9” pot and thought that moving the plant into it might be beneficial. As soon as I moved it, the plant exploded! It grew rapidly, and it was quickly twice as high as it had been. It expanded outward, and it sprouted many new leaves. Definitely, a happier plant!
I’ve been reflecting on this plant and how this growth can really mirror our growth as well. Once restrictions are removed, we can also blossom, grow, and thrive!
For more than a year, our lives have been severely restricted, as if we’ve been put in a too-small pot. We are just beginning to step outside of these artificial, narrow, and diminishing limitations as things in the world begin to expand and vaccinations are on the rise.
While we, and our lives, are starting to open up in this way, I am reflecting on limitations that may come from our world, our families, or ourselves. Our constraints may be self-inflicted, with doubts or fears getting in our way. Or they may be external, with a job or a life situation restricting us. Once we are able to remove the things that bind us, we can learn, grow, and express more of ourselves.
I found this to be true when I started my own business. I had the fortunate ability to leave my last job when I realized that I wanted to work in a different and expanded way, offering options to support people to move forward in their lives. As I started my business, I began to use parts of myself that were long-neglected or that I had never used before. I began in inhabit a new identity as an entrepreneur. I learned new ways to connect with clients and to market myself. I used technologies I had never used before, and I had so much fun working on my logo and building my website. Most importantly, I was able to work in new and different ways with my clients, providing education and support that excited and engaged me. As I speak about resilience, I talk about how we are most able to grow and learn when we take risks and try new things. I clearly saw this in action with myself.
Consider the life lesson from my houseplant. What is your too-small pot? What things constrict you in your life? Are they internal or external? How can you remove them or give yourself more space to grow and learn?