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“Shouldn’t you have bloomed already?” I repeatedly asked the mystery plant outside my mom’s front door.

I would worriedly judge the plant’s timing each time I went by it, since I had watched the buds form during the late summer/early fall, and was expecting a beautiful show of blossoming before winter set in.

Except they didn’t bloom. The buds remained on the plant the whole winter, and I chalked it up to a mistake caused by global warming.

Until this week…BOOM! A bloom! (And between originally writing this a few days ago and sending it today — more like 20 blooms)!

It made me feel like “how could I have ever NOT trusted this plant/mother nature/the process?”

When we are lacking trust in ourselves, it is harder to trust the processes around us.

I realized I had been asking myself a version of “shouldn’t you have bloomed already?” since about 5 minutes after I started my own business in 2014. “Shouldn’t you have figured it out? Shouldn’t you be wildly successful…immediately and consistently?”

For years, I have been mildly/harshly berating myself for not being further along/having it figured out/being in perpetual full bloom.

With my relationships.
With my business.
With my finances.
With my life.

And if you have ever been hard on yourself because you feel like you should be somewhere different than you are, you know: It. Is. Exhausting.

There is no such thing as eternal full bloom.

We cycle, seasons cycle, the earth cycles, life cycles. There is contraction before expansion, a letting go and dying off so new birth and growth can occur.

It is healthy and natural to desire new things, to want to move from where we are to where we want to be. Otherwise we would stagnate and stay in the same place, without growing or learning.

The key is to know you have a choice between berating yourself into blooming, and trusting yourself to bloom.

Part of the reason I was so stagnant for extended periods of time was because I was thinking and speaking harshly to myself about not being stagnant for extended periods of time! It was ineffective AND felt demeaning and depressing.

I have since learned I grow best when I practice self-love and self-trust.

I now replace thoughts like “how could you STILL not have figured this out?!” with “I am doing my best. I am always at the right time at the right place doing the right thing. I trust that I know what I need to know in this moment. I am learning to love myself more. I am learning to trust myself more. I deserve my own love. I deserve my own trust.”


Takeaway Tool: Blooming Requires Trust

Where in your life is it the easiest to grow and bloom and trust yourself? Where is it the hardest?

If you say “I am learning to love and trust myself more” – are there thoughts that come up trying to contradict why you deserve to do that? What are they saying?

Gift yourself at least 5 minutes to write down your answers (I would love to read them if you feel like sharing – either in the comment section on the blog, or by replying to this email).

If you choose, you can end by writing the affirmations “I am willing to change. I am willing to release all resistance to loving and trusting myself. I am learning to love and trust myself more.”


Growth is a necessary part of life — so why not use it to learn to love and trust ourselves (and the plants and processes around us) more along the way?

You deserve your own love. You deserve your own trust.

With love,
JoAnna
@thedesiredoula

PS – The plant is a rhododendron (I finally remembered to ask) – and the bud + bloom are pictured above =)

PPS – If you are an abuse survivor, please consider taking a confidential 5 minute survey that I am using to gain insights on the challenges + desires survivors are currently facing, so I can best create a mindfulness toolkit to help us more specifically go from where we are to where we want to be. For more info, check out last week’s blog. I infinitely appreciate your time and voice!

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