It’s been a hectic few days. While I’ve greatly appreciated the change in my commute from doing freeway battle to walking a few slipper-covered steps to my home office, some of the old rat race has crept back in. Back to back conference calls, delivery deadlines, and meetings. Trust me, as an independent consultant, I’m grateful for the busy-ness. It’s far, far better than the alternative. But a one-woman show requires a lot, and I work for a very demanding boss!
Yesterday brought a wonderful distraction from the too much- too little problems. It’s lilac season! When they show up, you can’t miss them! Big, bold, beautiful fragrant…they shout, “It’s here! Spring is here!” Their reappearance forced reflections on what I can learn from this cycle of nature.
When It’s Your Turn to Bloom, Go Big
The lilac tree on the east side of our house is a scraggly looking thing 11 months of the year. It can be fairly mistaken for a weed in the dog days of late summer. But for one month every spring, it’s show time. The aroma is the first engagement – there is no better perfume in spring air. The flowers are a sum of its parts – tiny clusters of purple, blue and grey open wide together for one stunning display. Lilacs are a reminder that no one does design better than Mother Nature.
What do I do when it’s my time to bloom? When a client calls, do I fully engage my problem solving capability? When I write, do I call on all of my creativity? When asked for help, am I fully present? I hope so. For the next few weeks, I have a stunning example of what “go big” means.
Small Investments, Many Rewards
The now blooming lilac tree preceded me to this house. I remember the effort to adopt it from the nursery, coax it into the back seat of my Honda, haul it from the back seat to deposit it at the back steps. I knocked on the door of my future husbands’ home and announced that he needed a lilac tree and now he had one. Many years later, we have a lilac tree – one that returns the favor of my effort every spring.
What can I invest in today that will pay back many times over? What seems too much of an effort, too much of a hassle now, but later will reward me many times over? I think of some relationships that fall in this category.
The gift of the fleeting joy of lilacs in full bloom is that they force me to seize the moment. Their show won’t wait for my convenience. It will open and close on their schedule, not mine.
What else could I stop for right now? What experiences that won’t be available when I have time? What should I stop ruminating about and just do? The annual lilac show reminds me that every moment offers advantages; it’s up to me to find them.
Today is another day of adventure. It will bring the never-ending puzzle of fitting too much into too little. But today, the big bouquet on my desk reminds me to stop and smell the lilacs.