Life is Like a Garden

Thought: ‘There is no stasis. What is not growing is in decay.’

Addictions UK uses Twitter to share inspirational Thoughts every day. This article is based on one of them. Follow us at @addictionsuk.

Even in the middle of winter, a garden is changing and growing. You can’t stop it. On the bare twigs there are buds waiting to bust. And, as any gardener knows, the wildlife, cute or pesky, never ceases to search for a meal.

Fast or slow, depending on the season, everything is decaying or growing, be it a beautiful ornamental or an invasive weed.

Life is like a garden. It never stands still.

There is something deep within the human psyche that longs for stasis and permanence. If only everything, anything would stay still, we could catch it and control it.

It’s a dangerous trap. If we are tempted to wait for life to become manageable then we are just watching a vanishing mirage. It’s not going to happen.

Life will always change – circumstances, the people around us, the economy, the environment. We will never get it under control.

In a way, this scary truth brings an unexpected comfort. The unruliness that surrounds each of us is not unusual or deviant, it’s the norm, a Fact of Life.

The trick with a garden is to manage, not to control. Centuries ago people tried to make formal gardens, but it was a constant battle by an army of labourers to keep out encroaching reality and, on close inspection, it was only ever an illusion.

Another of Addictions UK’s Thoughts on Twitter reminds us that “Accepting that you cannot control your addiction does need not mean that your whole life is chaos.”

We change our lives little by little, and start by preserving the good that is there already. Calling in a garden makeover team to change everything in three days only happens on the Telly. In real life, our own lives, a little pruning here, a little feeding there, and the mess starts to look more organised and the flowers among the weeds are easier to see and to encourage.

Just as with a garden, we need to accept that in life change is unavoidable, that growth can be guided and, if we can accept some help with the management, it can become beautiful.

Please contact Addictions UK now if you need help with recovery from any addiction and especially if you are seeking home-based treatment.

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