In my house, I have a Bonsai Tree. I don’t know much about Bonsai Trees and when I was given the tree about 5 years ago I was certain that its plant death was near. You see, I don’t have a strong green thumb so when I was given the plant I thought my friend was crazy for giving it to me. Somehow, though, this tree has managed to survive the many hardships I have put it through; over watering, under watering, being frozen, my cat had a bad habit of trying to make a meal out of it’s leaves and I have often neglected to re-pot it so that it can continue to grow & thrive. Yet here it sits, in the window, sprouting new leaves. This is one tenacious plant!
What a plant has to do with personal growth.
I’ve looked at my little tree many times over the years but when I looked at it today this thought hit me, “How is that thing still alive after all it’s been through?” Then I looked at the too small pot I had it sitting in and realized that it could be so much bigger if I would just give it the room to grow. I suddenly realized, that much like my little tree, I had been through some hard times but somehow kept on growing. Also much like my tree, I had neglected to give myself the room I needed to properly grow and thrive.
Over the years I have had struggles and I have asked, “why me?” and chalked some of my circumstances up to bad luck. That was just how my life was going to be. It wasn’t until I finally realized that I held the power to push my life forward that I finally felt like I could move forward. That life epiphany led me and my family to make the huge decision to move from our home and life of nine years and restart in my home state.
For the first time in a long time, I felt light and free and like I was where I was supposed to be. I had been re-potted into a larger pot and it felt amazing. I was full of hope and excitement for the future. Then, shortly before our planned move, tragedy hit my family. My husband, daughter and I rushed to be with my family so that we could all be together during the painful time.
Troubled Waters. Lessons Learned
At first, the focus was just on being with my family and getting through this hardship. As the year progressed, the pain has still been there but we’re getting through it. This tragedy made it incredibly apparent to me the importance of family, of being there for one another and never taking anything for granted. I don’t think our decision to make this move was a coincidence.
I had been wanting this move for years but suddenly, literally weeks before everything happened, we finally made the decision to make the move. My husband and I said, “This is it.” and we were preparing for the move. I don’t know if I would have been able to get through this hardship properly if I would have had to return to our old life. So I know that we are where we are supposed to be and that this hardship was meant to teach me a lesson and make me stronger.
I have realized something, however, that saddened me, I had once again neglected myself and stunted my growth. The familiar feelings of being stuck and of feeling like I was unlucky had returned. I was also beginning to doubt whether we made the right decision. How did I get here again? I knew the answer of course. I had neglected to give myself the care and love that I needed I was once again fighting for space and struggling to expand. With no place to go, it was no surprise that I was experiencing those familiar feelings again.
With this realization, I have made a vow to myself to never again allow Me to halt my own growth. I do not want to spend years feeling stuck and unlucky ever again. I alone hold the power to my growth and happiness. The key to staying out of that hole and continuing to move forward in my path in life is to nurture myself and to trust and give myself the space I need to grow. I know it won’t always be easy and life won’t always go my way, it never does, but I am strong enough to learn from my trials and mistakes and keep on growing.
That’s some pretty deep stuff just from looking at a little old plant but I have moved my tree into a bigger pot and it’s growth has been amazing to watch.
Can you relate to my personal growth story? I challenge you to take a look at the areas of your life that you feel like you are struggling to expand in and figure out what you need to do to get into a bigger pot.