MY FRONT LAWN
I let two large trees in my front yard go too long without a proper trimming, and over time the increased shade they provided caused much of my front lawn to become sparse and die. Dirt and silt became more plentiful than blades of grass.
Some awesome people I know decided as a service project to plant sod in my front yard and beautify my front yard once more, and all for free. The effort of 12 or so people yielded the hope of lush grass once again.
Lush grass, however, was not a guarantee, just a possibility. It would require watering the grass two times a day. Most of the grass could be watered by my sprinkler system; however, there were 5 different spots that required hand watering twice daily. That meant that I had to roll out of bed 30 minutes earlier for 2 weeks to water my lawn before work and then take the time to water it again at dusk. I enlisted my oldest son to help when he could.
Getting our grass back to where we wanted it to be required a dedicated sacrifice for 2 weeks. After one week of this regimen we started to really see a difference. The grass was starting to green up and grow. At a week and a half, you could barely see any of the sod seams and the grass was growing in nicely. By the end of the two week period of time, the rolls of sod had blended together and created a beautiful green front lawn!
Of course to keep the lawn healthy, green and lush will require maintenance. Proper sunlight, sufficient watering, mowing, weeding and fertilizing are all necessary to keep our newest pride and joy in tip top shape. While it no longer requires intense attention, it still requires consistent attention to remain healthy. And, in fact, 2 months down the line, it has brown patches still cropping up here and there, requiring an extra dose of watering to bring it back.
Through this experience I saw truth in the words: THE GRASS IS GREENER WHERE YOU WATER IT and witnessed how the literal watering of my lawn produced growth, beauty and actual happiness! This is an analogy for life!
YOUR MENTAL HEALTH
When it comes to your mental health and well-being, what do you look like? Are you lusciously thriving, barely holding on, or being overcome by barren spots and weeds?
What needs watering in your life? What do you have hopes of rescuing, revitalizing, or renewing when it comes to your mental health? How can you make this happen?
TIME FOR A GAME PLAN
We can start by developing a game plan to strengthen and beautify that patch of grass and then put it into play.
1.Be contemplative and pick a goal or two that you want to work on to increase your mental well-being. Choose to get up out of bed on time, meditate daily, or commit to seeing a therapist or joining an addiction recovery group and consistently attend. Whatever your choice is, make sure you choose something that you personally are motivated to achieve, not something that overwhelms you and makes you want to give up from the get go.
2.Now, come up with the steps you need to achieve the goal and commit to taking them. It may be difficult at first as you sacrifice and change behavior/practices, but over time they will become part of your everyday life.(https://jamesclear.com/new-habit This is an interesting read on habit forming. There is no magic number as we’ve been conditioned to believe! It actually takes longer than 21/30 days to form a new habit.)
3.Go to work! Yes, it will take sacrifice, patience and persistence, but the end result will be so incredibly worth it! You will see the power you possess to make that which was neglected beautiful, perhaps for the first time, or yet again.
We all have a choice in what we water in our own lives. Make the most of your water and see the beauty it yields when it comes to nurturing your mental health!