Acceptance & Commitment Therapy – Gardening today I noticed just how much I needed to prune the ‘gorgeous’ plants as well as take some of the weeds out. Some weeds we really like so we keep them.
I am not a natural gardener and spent last week and this weekend in the garden balancing garden stuff. hot showers, reading, relaxing and yummy food. Now this kind of gardening is pretty awesome.
It hit me just how much you still had to tend to the garden for the things that you nurtured and nourished to grow. Some of our plants grew a lot, so we needed to prune to make space for them to continue to flourish. Some needed pruning because they were dying or damaged and had not been tended to earlier.
I was surprised about this aspect as I had not really appreciated it before. It reminded me just how important it is to continually look at our values to keep checking in with them to make sure we are living them so we continue to flourish. It needs to be a consistent deliberate act, a conscious effort, an intention and when you know which value you are operating then you know what it will look like.
It does not matter what the value is, as it belongs to you and so will be part of your connection, your rich and meaningful ways of being, even when the going gets tough, even when discomfort is around.
The mindfulness aspect of us, being in the present moment I understand more and more what this actually means. It really does mean being present to who we are in the moment and to what we are doing. This is quite a skill and although there are various techniques that are simple, it is not always so easy to do and needs practice, practice.
However each small practice strengthens the ability to be true to our emotions and feelings, dealing with thoughts for what they are, just thoughts whilst at the same time taking valued actions, the doing that matters to us.
When I look at our current garden it has been years in the making. It has only been through planting, observing, deciding on preferences, weeding, pruning, planting, that we have come to a place where we like what we have. This is a constant process as we watch things grow it changes the landscape yet again and each time we have choices.
This is Acceptance & Commitment Therapy, accept what is, what we do not have control over and be committed to valued action for what we do have control over, whilst dealing with all thoughts and feelings, comfortable and uncomfortable in the present moment.
My hope for you is that you notice what it is like to live your values and feel the agency in your life, even with discomfort. You are so worthy of living a rich and full meaningful life.
From a grateful Liz