I’m busy. Busy. Busy, busy, busy. Like most of us. Let’s start with my job. It’s busy. Luckily it’s a job I love, but I work really hard and I’d be lying if I said it wasn’t stressful at times. There’s also my social life. Again, I’m very lucky. My family and friends are wonderful, as recorded in my gratitude journal, but it can be so busy fitting in weekend visits, phone calls and nights out with these VIPs.
My husband Alex, he’s busy too. Together we have all of the ‘life admin’ that can’t be ignored. Weekly shopping (tedious), cleaning the cat’s litter tray (grim), laundry (boring), putting the clean laundry away (worse than actually doing the laundry). Add to that the emails, social media updates, and news alerts buzzing from my phone, and life is pretty much non-stop. In brief, I’M BUSY!
But at the weekend everything slows down when I enter my own little sanctuary. THE GARDEN. It’s definitely my happy place and I’ve spent some time thinking about why time spent in the garden makes me feel so much better. Here’s what I’ve come up with…
When I’m working in the garden it can get pretty physical; pruning bushes, digging over beds, and planting crops. I’ve realised that the steady rhythm of digging, cutting, and lifting is a meditation of sorts. Being outside in the fresh air, blood pumping, mind focused only on the task at hand means I’m living in the moment. I’m mindful. As I cut back the lavender, I notice the beautiful smell. As I harvest the last of my autumn squashes I marvel at their colour, texture, and the fact I grew this from a tiny seed.
IT’S A DOUBLE DETOX
Detox one. When I pull on my wellies and head into the garden I grab two things: the shed key and a crackly portable radio. That’s it. No phone, no wifi, no Snapchat (what’s Snapchat?). Without the distraction of technology, I forget about work, there’s no pressure to be ‘connected’, and my mind slows down.
Detox two. I grow veggies and I do it the organic way. No bug sprays, no slug pellets, no peat. Only a bit of manure and a lot of love. Fresh organic veggies straight from the garden taste DELICIOUS. When I eat them I feel like I’m nourishing my body and, because I’m happy, I’m nourishing my soul too.
AN AWE WALK WITHOUT LEAVING YOUR BACK YARD
Alex is a wildlife enthusiast and as such we actively encourage wildlife into our garden. Several years ago, whilst out on a walk, Alex said something to me that has always stuck, “If you’re interested in nature you’ll never be bored… there’s always something to see”. He’s right. Now when I’m in the garden, if I hear the chirrup of a bird I’ll stop what I’m doing and look up. I might spot our friendly robin – affectionately known as Mr Robin – who always makes me smile. And when I walk past the lavender I’ll stop and look at the bees. They’re always on the go, collecting pollen and buzzing away.
For me, the garden (any garden – it doesn’t have to be your own) is a never ending source of happiness. So I urge you to give it a go. Get outside, stop and smell the flowers – and leave the busy stuff to the bees.