Getting The Life You Want

There is a natural law concerning sowing and reaping with which you will be very familiar and it is quite simply that what you get, in life, is largely a consequence of what you give out. As my wife would put it, “what goes around, comes around” or, as I prefer to state it, “you reap what you sow.”

In this post I would like to take a closer look at the analogy of sowing and reaping.

Firstly, let’s consider what happens if you don’t sow anything at all. Think of your garden. If you don’t put some nice plants in, then you won’t enjoy their fragrance and colour in the summer. Sure that’s perfectly understandable, but come summertime, your garden also won’t be empty because if you don’t take your opportunity to sow into that good soil, then nature herself will.

Your garden will bring forth an abundance of life without any assistance from you, and the plants that will grow there will mostly be weeds which are, as one gardener put it, the kind of flower that not many gardeners have yet learned to appreciate.

With a garden full of weeds, most people will decide, at some point, to take action to get rid of them and the process of getting the garden back to its initial state where it is ready for planting can take quite a bit of effort. Certainly, it is a lot more difficult to get rid of a garden full of weeds than it would have been to have prevented them turning up in the first place.

Ask any gardener how to keep a garden free of weeds and they will tell you that the best method is by planting. If you pack your garden out with the plants you want, they will go a long way toward preventing weeds from appearing. A second piece of advice often given by successful gardeners is to be vigilant. When you see the odd weed that has managed to establish itself, pull it out immediately and certainly well before it gets a chance to seed itself otherwise you will have a bigger problem later.

So the garden is a metaphor for your life and getting the life you want is very similar process in many respects:

  • The garden won’t be empty (your life will be busy and full)
  • It probably won’t be what you want (you won’t get the life you want)
  • Clearing the garden is a difficult task (it will be harder to change later)
  • Plant the garden you want (decide what you want in life and go for it)
  • Remove weeds immediately (commit to learning and personal growth)

One last thing I wanted to draw from the analogy concerns the seeds. As I mentioned, if you allow weeds to take over your garden, they will produce more and more weeds because they do actually multiply. A single dandelion produces about 200 seeds each time it flowers and many more over the course of its life. It only needs a very tiny success rate in order to multiply, as we probably all know.

But cultivated flowers also produce seeds and so the reward for planting the garden you want cannot be measured solely in terms of the colour and fragrance of the resulting garden. The faithful gardener is rewarded with many more seeds that he can then utilise to propagate his garden. In our analogy, I consider the good seeds to represent opportunities for growth.

As you begin to consciously live the life you want, more and more opportunities will naturally come your way, so that eventually, keeping your life on course will truly become almost effortless.

3 thoughts on “Getting The Life You Want

  1. Brendan Dale

    Like most things we can consider to be universal truths, this is a simple but very wise and often overlooked concept. Its too often the case that we do not take the time to really pause, evaluate and assess the good or bad influences our actions have on our lives and our happiness. With just keeping the concept of input and outcome or cause and effect firmly in the back of our minds, gently guiding our lives to a better place should come as second nature.

    I particularly enjoyed the extension of the classic “reap what you sow” metaphor in this post because it really does capture everything that is necessary to bring about enrichment within our lives. I also think its essential to take a little time out to appreciate what we already have and use this as a platform to build upon, rather than viewing things negatively when we get frustrated about what we feel is lacking in our lives.

  2. Delton

    Will, you are right about the weeds in the garden and the ones in life. Sometimes I think the ones in the garden are easier to remove than those in life. If we could just reach down and pluck the weeds from our life things would be great but it just isn’t that easy.

  3. Joe Lee

    Nice of you to use the garden analogy!

    Creating the kind of life that you want is about being aware and conscious of what you want, and make a conscious effort of creating it. Going on a pro-active mode rather than a reactive.

    I was stuck in the reactive mode for sometime many years back. The lack of money forces me to do something. While I argued those are my choices, I decide what to do; still it was driven by the lack of money.

    These changes when a great friend pointed to me that I’m living from LACK. From then, I made conscious effort to create the kind of life that I envision.

    Right now, my friend told me he no longer sees the frown on my face. I seem lighter and less stress. Having that awareness of creating changes everything for me.

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