Insights and Inspiration for a Happy, Healthy and Peaceful You


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For a Happy, Healthy and Peaceful You

Home » Making grass greener with one’s own energetic watering

Making grass greener with one’s own energetic watering

by Neera Kuckreja Sohoni
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There is everything to be said for seeking new pastures and bigger, better opportunities but also for working to renew our existing patch of green that appears dry to us but not to others.

At a time when pessimism, self-victimization and apathy are on the rise, we can do with some energizing thoughts. We are all familiar with envy which daunts and haunts us – marring whatever satisfaction we can derive from our life’s course. Our failures easily overshadow our successes. Consequently, our unfulfilled aspirations make us envious of those whose pace of progress and achievement outpace us. That is how we convince ourselves that ‘the grass is greener on the other side’.

In recent years, a fresh take has been given on that jaded thinking. The positive thinking and self-help gurus are warning us not to look at life from the lens of grass appearing to be greener on the other side. Instead, they urge us to know the truth behind the greening of grass, literally. The grass in your lawn becomes green where you water it and only when you water it. Without water reinforcement, flowers die, buds don’t bloom, plants and trees wither away, the green patches turn brown and eventually barren.

So, the wise ask us to move away from the belief that “The grass is always greener on the other side”, and replace it with another adage, “The grass is greener where you water it”. If we pour water into the barren pasture of our life, they tell us, we can almost certainly watch it turn green from brown.

By admonishing us for wanting to measure our own happiness and self-worth vis-à-vis others, and always comparing ourselves to others who have what appears to be “more”, we hurt only ourselves. That attitude is neither the right nor the productive way to view life or our accomplishments.  

It sounds banal and boring to say our happiness depends on ourselves. How we wake up each morning and with what energy and enthusiasm we seek to live, water, nourish and cherish every moment is the true key to human happiness. Just as beauty lies in the eyes of the beholder, so do success and fulfillment, which perspective we use as a yardstick to measure those. If we change the yardstick, we can change the outcome.

By pouring into our life the water-like spray of things we most care to pursue, while setting aside any comparison with others, we are bound to watch our grass and vegetable seeds grow and our life’s buds blossom.

We all know our time, energy and resources are precious but limited. To be effective, we must put them to best use, and deploy them in a focused rather than a nondescript general way. While pursuing our goals or tasks, we need to avoid distractions and disgruntlements. By putting our energy into comparing ourselves to others, we are in effect directing our energy to put their goals and achievements above ours and helping them grow their lawn or garden. By putting our resources into others and diverting our water to replenish their lawns, “it is someone else’s lawn that gets greener because you are wasting your water on them and not reserving it for yourself”, said one self-improvement blogpost. 

To generate desired results in the areas they are being applied, we need to stay focused and rely on self-affirmation. Those weeds we see in our own backyard appear as green fields to others, and vice versa. There is everything to be said for seeking new pastures and bigger, better opportunities but also for working to renew our existing patch of green that appears dry to us but not to others.

On a broader level, we do not need to allow our yard (and our relationships with others and with God) to perish from neglect. Instead, we must always remember that “The grass is always greener where you water it”.  The more we invest in our surroundings and those in the ambit of our life, the broader the circle of life and happiness grows.

When we transmit love and cordiality to others, we find ourselves surrounded with ever more love. Unlike money, love is one capital that grows with spending. We become wealthier when we express our affection and regard for known and unknown others. When we look at others with appreciation and not envy and enmity, we are learning like God to embrace everyone.

Whether professional or personal, relationships too are like gardens. They are fragile and require attention and nurturing. The moment we stop tending to them or take them for granted, they begin to wither.

In the final analysis, even if you are a striver believing in ‘sky is the limit’, have your feet firmly on the ground and do appreciate and enjoy the patch of grass you are standing on.

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