Spring has finally sprung in Sweden. Finally! After the longest Winter I ever experienced in my life. It isn’t the first time I mention that I’m really affected by the seasons, even in business. I wrote about Summer and Winter before. It isn’t any different this time. Spring is the season of planting new seeds and ideas, the season of opportunity and blossoms. I’m living more outwards (less introvert), everything feels lighter, I pay more attention to things around me and see possibilities.
If anyone would ask me ‘tell me three things you like’, I would say: paint – colours – (wild)flowers. Spring in Sweden is just the start of an abundance of wildflowers, so I’m a pretty happy girl you could say. Right now the flowers are super tiny (wood anemone, winter aconite and colt’s foot), maybe ridiculous to see if you live in Spain, California or Australia, but over here it’s a pretty big deal to have that first tiny flower.
I also planted flower seeds in little pots on our window sill, they’re growing like crazy (aka seedlings of 4cm), almost ready to be moved to the greenhouse. The greenhouse was delivered last week, but we didn’t build it yet. I can’t wait! We’d better hurry before my plants and flowers grow too big. This will be the view from our greenhouse.
I’m a gardener at heart, just like the author of this beautiful article about growing a garden, or a business: Business Lessons from a Quiet Gardener. Below are my favorite parts of the article. They resonate with me because a lot is changing in my business right now. This is exciting but also overwhelming. A lot of questions arose about possibilities, time-management, priorities, making money and so much more.
Thinking about it in terms of seasons, nature and gardening helps me stay grounded and find the answers to my questions. It’s self-coaching you could say!
MAKING MEANING OR MONEY?
The gardener’s (or entrepreneur’s) work is a life of care. We cultivate abundance from scarce resources. We nurture, encourage, fertilize – and prune when necessary – while being respectful of the true and wild nature of all things.
Growing my business is as much about personal development and making meaning as about making money. If I focus too much an the latter part, I get lost. If I only focus on making meaning and creativity, I get lost. Finding the right heartfelt mindset about ‘the financials’ is an act of balance. A really hard lesson to learn for so many of us, but we have to be respectful of the true and wild nature of all things, we can’t force growth and we have to stay true to our values.
A gardener sees the world as a system of interdependent parts – where healthy, sustaining relationships are essential to the vitality of the whole. “A real gardener is not a person who cultivates flowers, but a person who cultivates the soil.”
Our businesses are part of a larger network of wonderful people. Some new faces, some people we connect with since many years, some are clients, customers, or co-entrepreneurs. We’re a system and we need each other. As much introvert as I am sometimes (especially in the Winter), I also want to cultivate the many good relationships I have built with people through the years.
Gardening, like business, is inherently a local activity, set within an ever-changing and unpredictable global climate. Showing up in person, shovel – and humility in hand is essential.
I don’t really know what my business will be like in a year from now. I have a vision and goals, I will take certain actions and I have faith in the outcome, but it’s never going to be how I think it will be. There’s always that nagging unpredictability. Can you identify with that?
I hope that my little review of the Quiet Gardener’s article inspired you to think a little about your stage in business. I got carried away and got lost in my own world, but I’m going to hit the publish button anyway! I’ll keep it a little lighter, less vague and more fun in my next post!