Thank goodness for Gardener Dave!
Over the past 3 months my garden has gone crazy! Lots of rain, followed by weeks of sun, (and now more rain), got my garden looking like a scene from I’m a celebrity in the jungle. My poor dog got to the point that you couldn’t even see her unless the tip of her tail was straight up. Looking out of the window all I could see was a meadow of waist high grass. To put this into some kind of context for you, I live on a corner plot so I have three gardens, most of which is lawn with the occasional hardy shrub that I’ve not managed to kill yet, and a few fruit trees thrown in. I also hate gardening, but love spending time in the garden, or at the very least looking at it either through my window or sat relaxing on my back step at night. Last week it got to the point where it seriously got me down. I could no longer look out at it and feel happy, in fact it become to total opposite.
Having a garden being such a mess took me back to how I used to feel about my house. Worrying about visitors, feeling shame and embarrassment and feeling like I needed to be making excuses about why things were like this, even though this time it was only temporary. On Monday it was my daughter’s birthday, and many of her friends were getting their parents to drive them over to drop off cards and presents (whilst socially distancing, obviously). This took me back. To the horrible feeling in the pit of my stomach I used to get. To feeling judged about how my home didn’t reflect on the person I was inside, and the image I like to portray to the outside world. I was a smart, professional, successful business woman – yet at that point in my life my home was chaos and a total embarrassment to me – a shameful secret I needed to hide. That knot in my stomach appeared every time my daughter said someone was coming over, but it also reminded me that THIS situation is temporary, and it is quickly and easily fixed! It was also out of my control, but I needed to control it.
When I decluttered my outhouses, I sold off all my gardening gear except a few bits I really enjoyed using. I sold my lawn mower. It was far too heavy for me to use, and when I did attempt to use it, it would take an entire day to cut the lawn, I’d hate every sweaty minute of it, and ache for days afterwards. I’d never have time to do it when the weather was fine, I couldn’t get the timing right so I’d usually blow something up trying to cut it when wet, and working 7 days a week meant it very rarely happened anyway. Deciding that having a nice garden for only 3 days a year wasn’t working for me I sold all my gear off and decided to hire a gardener. Gardner Dave used to come once a fortnight and work his miracle (I even wrote a blog post HERE about outsourcing) and I could enjoy my garden stress free every single day! Obviously with Covid-19 gardener Dave hasn’t been able to come, and boy have I missed him. I'm also aware that if I still had the tools to sort the garden, the motivation wouldn't be there, and it still would be looking the same.
As restrictions slowly lifted I contacted him and said I really needed his help, that the garden was getting really bad, so this week he came over! With the grass being so huge and wet he’s done a first initial strim (I’m also grateful he has a heavy duty strimmer – I think it had its work cut out!). He’s coming back next week to go over it with the mower, and look at how best to ‘feed’ it, and then once that’s done I can install some pretty solar lights I’ve bought that I’m dead excited over.
You might think, what on earth am I telling you all this for. Well when I was reminded by the knot in my stomach it all came flooding back as to how I used to feel, and that reminded me that some of you may still feel like this bout your homes.
You may be sat at home in a house that gives you that same horrible knot. But it doesn’t have to be that way. It’s not shameful. It’s no reason to feel judged… it’s just that you are feeling stuck and don’t have a plan to change things yet.
So just like Dave did a first cut – you can get a first ‘sweep’ on your home too. The first thing you have to do is outsource, and ask for help! The only difference instead of hiring gardener Dave, you hire me! I’m back at work doing video consultations now. A one hour session costs £30. Things may get a bit messy – but you’ll feel OK with it because you know that you have a plan, things are moving in the right direction – you’re no longer stuck.
After the first cut, it then goes to tidying up just like my lawn getting its mow. So once we’ve decluttered, we can then organise, and set things on the path towards being able to maintain it. After this comes the best bit – making it look pretty, and at this point you probably don’t need my help anymore. So, like I will be installing pretty lights in my garden, once the clutter is removed in your home you will really ‘see it’ again and be able to enjoy it. You’ll be able to rethink how it is, maybe look at redecorating, or decide on a new colour scheme. The pretty enhancements will make a real difference now your room is in a clutter free relaxing state, as they can be seen and make an impact. Then you can sit back and enjoy your home, feel proud, and never get that awful feeling again (well, when lockdown is totally lifted when someone pops over!)
If you want to start the first step on this journey – I am doing free one hour initial consultations by video to see if I can help. The are a great way for me to introduce myself, and also for you to see if I’m the best person for you to feel comfortable working with. If you’d like to find out more, info can be found on my website HERE. I’m now off to sit on the back step with a cuppa and take a moment, I hope you’re able to do something similar to just take five minutes to just breathe and relax.