Planting Seeds for a Future Harvest

 In Weekly Forum Discussion

Written by: Carol Harrison; Carol’s Corner

Spring has sprung. Seeds, soil, bedding plants and pots of flowers ready to set out adorn the outdoor section of most large stores as well as greenhouses. I love looking at the flowers, especially the pansies, but I never bring them home. I live in an apartment with a balcony which could host a few pots of these cheery faced flowers but I have a black thumb and they don’t tend to do well in my care.

But what seeds am I planting in my life? What do I hope to harvest after a time of nurturing and growth? Last year, at this time, I had many ideas (including enjoying a long train trip), but now what? It is a good thing to sit and evaluate, to plan my metaphorical garden just like avid gardeners plan for where to place the seeds and bedding plants, what to rearrange or exclude.

Since spring of last year I have spent more time on my writing, publishing some short pieces and even begun coaching young writers. More stories have blossomed and been sent to readers to enjoy, be encouraged by and learn from. Now seeds of ideas for even more stories — possibly books of short stories — lay ready to be planted, but I wonder if more seeds of ideas need to be worked with… planted and later harvested.

I love speaking, teaching and sharing stories. Ideas for workshops filter through my mind and some have even begun to germinate beyond the seed of an idea. Now notes dot pages in my notebook, several beautiful workbook-style journals have been designed by a good friend in anticipation of a harvest of workshops. Several shorter workshops on Preserving Family Memories and The Power of Story have been offered to small numbers of people with positive feedback.

I have already planted some seeds like starting my own bedding plants. I have material from retreats I spoke at, workshops I have done and writing that can be repurposed into a new format to share the words and stories with many more people. I need to quit procrastinating and tend to the next steps to assure a harvest in time.

Where will these new seeds of ideas take me? How will I market them once they are ready to harvest? I know they fit with my mission statement, “I am passionate about mentoring people of all ages and abilities to help them find their voice and reach their fullest potential, encouraging them to find a glimmer of hope and a glimpse of joy no matter the circumstances.

There are opportunities to incorporate online courses, webinars and written books or journals to go with them. Technology and I are not on the best of speaking terms much of the time but I can learn from others or surround myself with those that know more than I do, even hiring help to work on my garden of ideas. I have several young adult granddaughters who have the ability to do what I cannot do to get online courses up and running. It would be fun and a special privilege to work alongside them, learning from them and helping them offset the cost of more schooling too.

I can use marketing materials that have been designed for Carol’s Corner which need to be used – these tools to help my seeds grow and flourish which could result in a harvest of on-site speaking engagements and workshops as well. My garden of ideas overwhelms at times with its magnitude but I will take it one step at a time, developing better habits and procrastinating less.

My harvest will be when those ideas move from my mind and on a page to courses and books available to help others succeed in their journey of preserving memories, finding their voices and learning how to use the power of stories in their work and life. Spring has sprung. I must get busy planting those seeds.

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