While gardening can be a really healthy activity for your body, it is not only your body that benefits from you tending to plants in your garden. It is a known fact that being surrounded by nature fills us with positivity, but have you ever wondered why that is? Mindful gardening is more than you making sure your garden doesn’t get invaded by weeds, it is you connecting with nature and with yourself in the process. But let’s explore the activity of mindful gardening more in detail.
Because it allows you to meditate at what you are doing rather than simply doing it just to get it over with. How does your work affect nature? How are the creatures living in your garden affected by your gardening activities? Why did this plant decide to grow here and not in some other place?
You connect with the earth by touching it, by feeling its consistency, its temperature, by tending to the plants that so vigorously grow thanks to it. You observe how you become part of the cycle of nature by clearing the old plants and making room for the new ones. Mindful gardening is experienced at its fullest when there are no distractions to keep you from your work. Try not to invite a friend to help, or listen to music while you’re gardening, listen to your breath instead, to how it accelerates when your body gets tired. And allow yourself to get tired. There is no greater feeling that being exhausted at the end of the day, but knowing that your actions helped improve even a small percentage of the earth.
Mindful gardening also allows you to practice patience and reconnect with yourself. In today’s society, we are used to instant gratification, everything is one click or car ride away. But you can’t force gardening, you can’t expect to plant something today and reap the fruits tomorrow. Applying this to your everyday life will teach you how mindful gardening becomes a metaphor. If you can’t make things happen instantly, be more present in the moment instead. Take it all in.
1. Be constantly aware of your surroundings: Walk carefully so as not to disturb any plants or hurt any creatures that might be hiding among the leaves.
2. Add meditation to mindful gardening: When we focus on a physical activity, it can be the perfect environment for meditation. Whenever you feel you mind drifting away to daily issues, use nature to pull you back into the present.
3. Take your time: Mindful gardening cannot be done in a rush. The whole purpose of it is to make you aware of your surroundings and of how you play a part in them. Do not look for the end result, enjoy the experience instead.
If after reading this article you realized that when you are gardening you do not take the time to consider this experience and how it affects the earth and yourself, then you are not practicing mindful gardening. And there is no better time to start than right now!
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