Many years ago, I lived in a house whose garden was invaded by a plant called Morning Glory. When in bloom the plant has beautiful flowers, but it is also a vine that strangles other plants until they die, and is so invasive it can take over your entire garden.
For the three years that I lived in the house, I would regularly pull the plants from the base, hoping that by doing so, I would eradicate the issue. Unfortunately, they always seemed to come back with a vengeance.
A couple of months before I was planning to sell the house, I knew that I needed to do something more drastic, as I believed that no one would buy a house whose yard was filled with Morning Glory.
I rented a rototiller, and spent a weekend tearing apart my entire yard, in hopes of killing off the plant for good. It meant taking time and going deep to ensure that I got to all of the roots.
I planted new sod and the yard looked beautiful when the house went on the market.
It was a total pain in the ass, though.
In fact, morning glory shares a lot of similarities with conflicts in my life.
Not only are they frustrating, but if ignored they grow and get worse, and if dealt with haphazardly, I might find a temporary reprieve, but they end up coming back. It is only when I commit to taking the time and patience to look for the root cause of the conflict, that I have a better chance of eradicating it completely.
And sometimes even that doesn’t even work. I still need to till the gardens of my mind on a regular basis, to ensure that I have healthy thoughts that lead to healthy emotions.
Too often, though, I race through trying to eliminate the problem and the cause of my frustration or anger, without doing the deeper work to determine it’s true cause. One of my coaches calls that “putting a band-aid on a broken leg” because it looks like you have done something, but you haven’t really done anything to solve the core issue.
I fear that the same thing is happening with you.
You are either trying to escape the problem, or you are rushing to find a quick and easy solution, when it would have a more lasting impact, if you took your time to find the root cause before looking for a solution.
Are you ready to start rototilling?
P.S. Not too long ago, I went into a shop here in France to buy something for my daughter, and on the tag came a packet of seeds for Morning Glory. Goes to show you that what one person thinks is an invasive weed, another finds beautiful and worth planting.
Compassion. Connection. Collaboration.