Are you the flower or the gardener?


Are you the flower or the gardener in your relationships - The Menzini Files

This year has been all over the place for me, especially healthwise. There’s one thing though that really struck a cord with me: the question if you are the flower or the gardener in the relationships of your life. Have you heard about that? Here’s more…

I recently read an article or watched a TV show (who really knows?), where someone pointed out that in order to distress and function properly, you need to slow down and let yourself be the flower.

Turns out, in every type of relationship – with your partner, best friend, siblings, parents – you are either the gardener or the flower. Meaning that you are either the person taking care of the other person so they can flourish or being the one who is being taken care of by someone else in order to bloom. Gardener and flower? Ideally, it’s a give and take and you’re able to maintain some kind of balance throughout the relationship. But what if it’s not?

When that sunk in, it dawned on me that I am used to being the gardener. The truth is, that I am the gardener in every significant relationship in my life and always have been in the past. This year especially, I can feel the aftermath of constantly being the caretaker and never really getting or taking a break.

To be fair, I don’t make it easy for others to see the flower in me they want to take care of, which is also why this has been such a powerful lesson to me in letting go and releasing any reservations of feeling like a burden to my loved ones.

It feels like crawling out of my own skin, but I guess it’s called growth, and isn’t that what a budding flower is all about?!

Photo via Beeslikehoney


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  1. But what happens when feeling like a flower makes you sick to your stomach?! Should you just embrace it and pull up your big girl pants and give it a try? Or are you doomed to be only a gardener?!

    1. You are never doomed! But I do know that feeling all too well. Take baby steps. Try with a friend, you feel you can confide in. Share this article maybe and find a way to be vulnerable towards them and open up. That builds your confidence and then maybe try it in more complex relationships in your life – romantic or family – and take it one step after another. It takes a while but it’s like a new muscle you train and eventually it will become second nature. You got this!