There is a Buddhist teaching which states that all of us possess the seeds of every emotion and behaviour in our deep consciousness. These seeds, when watered, are our essence and become our conscious behaviour. We are encouraged, then, to water the good seeds and when the bad seeds have been watered to stop so they wither and return to their dormant state. The seeds, both good and bad, are always within. The choice is ours which to nurture.
Recently I found myself in a situation where I was not only watering but fertilizing and admiring a bad seed! It was growing feverishly. And just like plants in the earth my beautiful, existing good seed’s plant was being choked out and began drooping!
This pair of seeds, the good being a sense of worth and the bad being feelings of unworthiness, have been at odds many times before in my life. Their battle stems from a long history of events, people and personal choices. In the past the bad seed was most often the winner.
But for awhile now I have been consciously watering the good seed and it has been plentiful and healthy. I have been living well and with a great sense of worth. And then I got blindsided with such force that the bad seed was awakened! it’s plant grew swiftly and I was fearful and uncertain. This lead to procrastination, feelings of self-doubt and a wish to retreat and give up especially in some specific plans that were necessary for my business to move forward.
But I didn’t given in to those negative feelings. Instead I would like to share with you the three things I did do to push through the discomfort. These three things allowed me to conquer the fear of unworthiness long enough to take the risks I needed to in order to execute my plans.
I Acknowledged My Fear
I did this in a BIG way, at least for me! I allowed myself to feel the fear when it came to the surface. In the past I would have denied my feelings – covering them up with superficial bandages like shopping, drinking or watching too much tv to numb the fear. Instead I wrote about it everyday in my journal. I allowed myself to really be immersed in it so I couldn’t pretend it wasn’t there. And then I went public! I told my closest friends, my coach and I even posted it in a coaching group I belong to!
It was out there in plain view. And because I couldn’t hide from it…and because of the great support and advice I received…I was able to accept that, yes, this seed is part of me and I have watered.
I cannot stress how much meditation helped me to quiet the voice of fear that was ringing loudly between my ears! The simple act of focusing on my breath allowed my mind to settle down from churning out worst case scenarios and doomsday predictions. It also allowed my true self to speak, in her quiet voice, and be heard.
I think, on a very basic level, it gave me time not to think so much. That in itself was part of the problem…overthinking instead of just doing.
I Did It Anyway
Last, and maybe most important I just acted. I found 20 seconds of courage and just did what I needed to do to get the ball rolling. And after doing that one thing, I found another 20 seconds of courage for the next phase of my plans. Before I knew it all the pieces began falling into place and I had taken the risk and successfully executed my plans
Everything didn’t turn out perfectly. The outcome wasn’t 100% successful. But what I learned is it wasn’t really the outcome that was holding me back and watering my seed of unworthiness. In fact, it was the imagined disastrous picture I had created that had stifled me.
We all have the capacity to water our good seeds just as I did. We also always have the potential for the bad seeds to shoot sprouts. The key is to recognize when this is happening and open up to it so the good seed has a fighting chance!
Ultimately, it’s our garden to grow. There will always be both kinds of seeds in us. The trick is to take the time to tend to our gardens. The seeds you nurture and care for are the ones that will grow. It is a simple job that takes a lot of hard work but the beautiful garden you sow will not only be beautiful but you will find yourself living a good and happy life.