A Beginner’s Guide to Landscape Gardening & Mindfulness

woman practicing mindulfulness and gardening

What is Mindfulness?

Mindfulness is the mental state of being consciously and calmly aware of what is taking place in your body, mind and your surroundings. According to Eastern philosophy, when you have increased mindfulness, it can help you to have better mental clarity, emotional flexibility, concentration, tolerance, and empathy while decreasing your stress and rumination.

Meditation is among the top things you can do to boost mindfulness. As you sit, your focus changes on your breathing and you get the ability to allow your thoughts to come and go without the need for any judgments.

Though meditation is surely one of the top ways of boosting mindfulness, it is not the only way. There are other useful methods as well. One such method is gardening.

When you are gardening, you feel at peace and have a sense of tranquillity which is not found while doing other tasks. When you see a flower bloom or shrub grow after putting in hours in doing the task, the peace that comes with it is blissful.

Some people have the knack to lose themselves in gardening, and it brings them enormous peace. Such people are quite lucky, and you can join them if you want. Just start by visiting your garden a few times in a week.

You’ll notice that it will hugely benefit your mental welfare and you will be more mindful. If you need help in gaining mindfulness while gardening then keep reading on for some tips that will maximize mindfulness while gardening.

 

How Spending Time in a Garden can Boost Mindfulness and Happiness?

Landscaping and gardening help you to be happier and mindful due to the following reasons:

  • You Live in the Present Moment

The first benefit of gardening for boosting your happiness and mindfulness is that the sensory experience of gardening, i.e., working the soil, inhaling the fragrance of flowers, feeling the breeze on your cheeks, experiencing the strain when you lift a shovelful of dirt and tasting a fruit you grew makes you feel lively in the present moment.

You don’t think about the future or dwell on the past as you are too focused on the present experiences.

woman inhaling the fragrance of flowers in the garden

 

  • Gardening Teaches You the Power of Creation

Creating something from scratch gives you a wonderful feeling. When you work for hours and create something, be it a new plant or a new flower or even a new fruit, it gives you the feeling of doing something amazing.

This feeling also makes you happy from the inside, and for a few moments, you forget all your sorrows.

 

  • Gardening Teaches You the Power of Staying Positive

Gardening is great for mindfulness and happiness as it teaches you to stay positive. When a flower can grow in the dirt, it teaches you that you can also rise from the negatives around you and transform into a positive person.

When you turn into a positive person, you will be able to find the answers to all your problems and get wonderful solutions.

 

  • Gardening Teaches You to Stay Away from Negativity

Just like you get rid of the weeds in your garden, you should learn life lessons and weed out negative people from your life.

If you find yourself constantly criticized by another person and you want to live a peaceful life, it is smart to cut that person loose and stay away from all the negativity. Similarly, it teaches you to let go of negative thinking and think positively no matter how hard the situation is.

 

  • Gardening Boosts Creativity

Gardening also boosts your creativity because you have the power to decide which plants would look good with what other plants. You will also make better decisions regarding how your pathway will look or which tree ornaments you want to invest in.

All these decisions would bring out your unique creativity, and you will get the power to solve all the problems in your life as well creatively.

little girl standing besides grass plant in the garden

 

  • Gardening Teaches You to Let Go of Control

Some people have the habit of controlling everything, but no matter how hard they try, they cannot control when a plant will grow and how the garden would look in the next season.

So, gardening teaches you to not to try and control everything and leave some things to fate.

 

  • Gardening Teaches You Rainy Days are Good

Gardening also teaches you that as rainy days bring out the best in plants, hard times often bring the best in a person.

 

 

How to Practice Mindfulness in the Garden?

Though the first step to practicing mindfulness in the garden is just to go out and start with your tools, there are some steps that you can take to ensure that you practice mindfulness deliberately while working in the garden. Here they are:

  • Don’t Judge

The first thing you need to learn is that you shouldn’t judge any ideas that come into your head. It is also wise not to judge the current state of your garden but just work on making it better.

When you stop judging the garden, you will learn to stop judging people and accept them for who they are.

 

  • Trust Your Instincts

It is also suggested that you follow your instincts and don’t second guess yourself too often. Let your instincts control you, listen to what your instincts are saying and react to the changes in the garden in a positive manner.

When you become more aware of your surroundings and your garden, your instincts will become sharper and more accurate.

 

  • Don’t Set Time Limits

You should never set time limits as to when you will start getting peace from gardening or how much time you should spend in the garden to attain mindfulness.

Let mindfulness come to you in its own sweet time. You should just focus on the task at hand and do it right, no matter its weeding or placing a new plant.

beautiful strawberry plant

 

  • Let Your Senses Take You Away

It is also suggested that when you are engrossed in gardening, you should use all your senses to explore the garden.

Look at the garden to indulge your eyes, listen to the chirping of birds to indulge your ears and taste the fruits or vegetables you grow to indulge your taste buds.

 

  • Get Absorbed

The next step that would help you achieve total mindfulness is that you should find your flow. Get completely absorbed in the gardening process and enjoy it thoroughly.

You will also be smart to avoid all distractions and focus on the task at hand to ensure that you attain perfect mindfulness.

 

  • Never Ignore Your Garden

No matter how busy you get with your personal or professional life, you should never ignore your garden. Take out 30 minutes in a day to tend to what you have grown.

It will not only ensure that you touch base with mother nature but it will also save your garden from rotting while boosting mindfulness every day.

Always remember that you can’t attain mindfulness in a garden that needs a lot of tending or is ruined because you just didn’t have the time. If the garden is giving you so much in terms of mental peace, why not ensure that it remains as healthy as possible.

 

  • Don’t Use Technology

You should leave all the technology, be it your smartphone or your music player in the house when you are engrossed in gardening.

If you focus on your social media accounts or you are too busy in listening to songs, you will not be ready to attain mindfulness. Mobile phones also distract you way too often when other people call you, so it’s better to leave them at home when you enjoy gardening.

If you must take the phone with you, you should ensure that it’s on the do not disturb mode. This will help you to attend all the necessary calls while avoiding all useless distractions.

 

  • Observe Before You Start

Don’t get to work as soon as you step into the garden. Instead, you should enjoy the fruits of your hard work by engaging all your senses by smelling, seeing, touching and often tasting the fruits of your hard work.

It will ensure that you start gardening on a positive note. This observation period will also help you to feel motivated to garden with more enthusiasm and allow you to perfect all the imperfections you see from the start.

 

  • Don’t be Goal Oriented

Gardening is not your 9 to 5 job where you have to achieve all the targets to impress people. Instead, it’s a hobby that you are enjoying for your own time pass and pleasure, even mental peace.

So, you should try not to be very goal oriented and expect the flowers to grow in a set timeframe or fruit to become ready to eat in another timeframe as nature doesn’t work according to anyone’s timelines.

It is also wise to remember that every minute you spend in gardening won’t bring in visible results, so you should learn to be patient and let nature work at its own pace.

 

  • Try to Focus

Though people say that many activities of gardening are mindless, like weeding the garden, you can make use of that time to practice mindfulness.

Don’t think about what you are going to make at supper when you are weeding. Instead, focus on how the weeds feel in your hand, what colour are they or in which areas you find more weeds. Try to shift your focus on everything related to gardening if you want mindfulness to really work for you.

Once you practice mindfulness, even the boring tasks like weeding or difficult ones like shovelling dirt will be much pleasurable and contribute to your overall mental peace.

woman squatting in her backyard garden

 

  • Speak to Nature

Nature gives us so much that talking to it doesn’t sound funny or woo-woo spiritual to real gardeners. Most gardeners talk to their plants, fruits or even flowers. They name them, wish them good morning or have conversations about the weather.

If you find yourself doing the same the next time you are in the garden, you should realize that you are absolutely normal and you are not doing anything weird.

You are just making new pals who can’t talk back but are really interested in what you have to say. It’s just another way to appreciate mother nature and all that it has blessed you with.

 

  • Turn Garden Time into Transition Time

Most people often have to switch gears a couple of times a day. If you are one of them, then you probably know how hard it is to start cooking when you just spent a tiring day at work or how hard it is to go to the office and your job targets when you were just preparing your kids for school an hour back.

If you also find the transition from one role to another to be painful or strenuous, then you should start spending some time in the garden when you need to switch gears.

For instance, after you have prepared your kids for school, you should spend a few moments in the garden to attain mindfulness as it will help you to tackle the work stress with ease or at least mentally prepare yourself for the change.

 

Conclusion

In essence, it can be said that attaining mindfulness through gardening is quite easy if you follow all the steps mentioned above and practice regularly.

As they say “practice makes perfect,” you should truly believe the fact that gardening will help you to attain mindfulness and keep at it until you start seeing results.

It is guaranteed that once you start attaining mindfulness from gardening, you will hardly be able to resist yourself from visiting the garden every day and find some much-needed peace. And we are not blaming you for it.

In fact, in our opinion, getting addicted to mindfulness you attain via gardening is way better than attaining it by any other means, won’t you agree?

 

By | 2018-07-13T09:55:30+00:00 July 13th, 2018|Blog|

About the Author:

Leave A Comment

Shares