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Well hello there, you Thriving Soul. Welcome, you Vibrant Bloom. ????

I’m so excited that you’re here! In my initial post, I asked if you were ready to thriveandbloom. Which may seem like kind of a shady way to start because, I mean, who doesn’t want to at least thrive, if not outright bloom?

The thing is, we don’t all quite know how to go about the business of thriving, whatall it actually entails, just what it’s going to take. And even if we think we have a fairly good fix on what we want and what’s required to make it happen, we still might get stuck on how to balance all the things that we must do in the day-to-day with all that we really want to do in life; before long, what would lead to our true bloom gets buried and pushed aside by the heft and bulk of responsibility and obligation, and soon we may even start to question who we are to bloom in the first place.

Now, what it means to thriveandbloom is a very personal matter, and looking to someone else’s definition to satisfy your own soul can result in an uneasy disconnect. So many of us were raised and live by trusting other people’s visions of success over our own, and our culture seems to have safeguards in place to perpetuate that distrust of self. All the world has an idea of what success is supposed to look like, and people are very quick to speak up if they think you’re straying from that image.

Somewhere along the way, many of us have lost or perhaps never really known that we can dream up what it is we actually want to do and be, out of thin air and seashells, bass beats and glitter, if that’s what it takes to conceive it.

We don’t have to relegate ourselves to choosing off the pre-printed menu that has been passed our way; we can totally craft a custom selection of things we find tasty, leaving the rest for someone else. *

So the other day, I asked what it would mean for you, to thriveandbloom. Both thrive and bloom carry with them the idea of flourishing and growth. What would it look like for you to flourish, to grow? How would you feel? Who would be around you? Sometimes the opposite questions are even more light-shedding. How wouldn’t you feel? Who wouldn’t be around you? As you consider this envisioned future, consider also where you are already flourishing or growing, in the present. These can be your lift off points, the fertile mounds of earth from which your first vibrant shoots burst forth.

When we aren’t referring to plants, thriving can carry with it more of a traditional notion of success, of prospering, as it is often applied in terms of a thriving business or career. The success in blooming is more of an event of nature, a state of vital health or beauty. There is an aesthetic element to blooming, and in thriving, an implied abundance, often but not always financial for adults, academic or emotional in children.

If you read my first blog post, you may have noticed and perhaps even voted in the poll there that asked Which comes first – Thriving or Blooming? It has been interesting to watch the results roll in and how the “winning” response has evolved. The choice with the most votes alternated the whole time between Thriving, Blooming, and Like most things, it depends, up and down and over and around until ultimately landing on Thriving with one more vote than Blooming, which had one more vote than It depends. A few voted that they were more or less the same thing, and surprisingly only one person picked the trick question category. When I asked the question online, some of my friends weighed in with strong arguments as to why blooming comes before thriving, others with equally strong arguments for the reverse. They shared personal insights and thoughtful reflections, literal gardening knowledge, definitional explanations of how the two words are synonymous, a scientific interpretation, and an expletive-dipped call to action 🙂 I see no reason why they can’t all be true, even if some contradict the others.

Because we could parse points all day long. In the end though, what really matters is not the correctness of one definition over the other. It’s the discussion, the reflection, the figuring out for oneself what YOU think the relationship between the two is, and what that means for you. THAT is what I hope happens as a result of reading what I write here, today and going forward. I certainly don’t profess to have all the answers, and even if I had them all for myself, mine would be different than yours.   Not to mention that the teacher in me would never just tell you the answers anyway 🙂

I wouldn’t dream of denying you the opportunity to work it out yourself, as that is the learning that endures. All the rest – the facts and answers and all the information – can be looked up as needed.

Not even the really great stuff lives in a soul until it’s been thought about, talked about, and processed.

Sometimes the insights that will end up helping us the most are hiding in places we might never have dreamt to look.

Trust the flow of referral and connection. One conversation or recommendation could lead to another and then another, and before you know it, you may be far from the path of what you expected, and that may be exactly where you are meant to land.

No matter how you shake it all out, whether you are thriving or blooming or on the path along the way, the point is for growth to happen, for ideas to be sown; for the need to be fed, and the seed to be grown. In order to feed the need, it must be identified. It is my hope that reading this blog can help in that identification process. As I read great books loaded with wisdom, explore the topics with friends and reflect for myself, and share what I’ve culled and carved with you, I hope that you are able to get closer to figuring out what makes you pulse and purr and shoot up in exaltation to the sun and sky.

* Last month, I met in person a couple of women I had befriended in the Wild Soul Movement online community.  It was amazing to meet up with some like-minded spirits and just talk. About all the things that lit us up, what we had been working on and what we were looking forward to. It was so satisfying to get to know new people that way and to be known in the same way. At one point, we were talking about online dating, which – outside of some funny stories – has not been a very spirit-satisfying endeavor for me. They talked about deciding what you want and looking for it, literally putting it in the search box, instead of just looking at the list and choosing from the options before you. Which kind of blew my mind. Although I haven’t actually found great application of that in my online dating experience, it did lead to this idea of not just choosing choices, but imagining them, deciding what could be. Just a little digression about how awesome it is to talk to people about the stuff of your soul and the depth of your dreams, and how it can lead to groovy things 🙂

⇒ Bonus ????????????Check out these amazing pictures of plants that refuse NOT to thriveandbloom!!

What are your lift off points? Where are you already starting to thriveandbloom? I’d love to hear all about it in the comments below!


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