Flowers are nature’s free gifts to us – a gift full of beauty, wonder and wisdom, but only visible to the ones who are willing to appreciate them. Like a horse with blinders, many of us engage in a race to the top, and in this race, it is easy to stop noticing the daily occurrences of beauty around us. But if we do pause and pay attention, we will notice that flowers aren’t called nature’s work of art without good reason. With their beauty and grace, they give us many things to reflect and learn from. If only we can afford a little time to really pay attention, we will realize that from those delicate petals, we gain a respite, a teacher, and a language.

Respite

Have you ever received a flower delivery in the middle of the day, and immediately felt as if all the stress built up over the first part of the day just melted away? When we pause in our hurried steps to notice the flowers that are sitting quietly in a vase, nestled along the pavement, hanging from the trees, we simultaneously take a moment for ourselves to rest. We distance ourselves from the staccato paces of the footsteps around us, and for a short while, listen to our own rhythm. This is what flowers can provide us with – a break, a respite, a haven.

eeyore bouquet

When we’re feeling overwhelmed, stressed out, or lonely, it might do wonders to avert our attention away from those stressors, and focus on the colourful flowers omnipresent around us. It could be those flowers you’ve received from a recent bouquet delivery, the wildflowers you spot along the roadside, or the carefully curated flower décor in a building. Wherever these flowers are from, we’re confident of the positive impact they’ll have on your mood. We’ve prepared some quotes that we felt not only helped to belabour our point, but also demonstrates how to find respite in flowers.

  1. “Flowers are restful to look at. They have neither emotions nor conflicts.” – Sigmund Freud
  2. “If you take a flower in your hand and really look at it, it’s your world for a moment.” – Georgia O’Keeffe
  3. “Nobody sees a flower – really – it is so small it takes time – we haven’t time – and to see takes time, like to have a friend takes time.” – Georgia O’Keeffe
  4. “In joy or sadness flowers are our constant friends.” – Okakura Kakuz
  5. “Flowers always make people better, happier, and more helpful; they are sunshine, food and medicine to the mind.” – Luther Burbank
  6. “Gardens and flowers have a way of bringing people together, drawing them from their homes.” – Clare Ansberry, The Women of Troy Hill
  7. “Every bird, every tree, every flower reminds me what a blessing and privilege it is just to be alive.” – Marty Rubin
  8. “Just giving someone flowers, or inhaling their sweet aromas, makes us smile and promotes elevated moods, positive thoughts, and eases social encounters.” – Stephen Buchmann, The Reason for Flowers

Teach

How many of us actually notice the abundance of nature that we live in? At almost every corner we turn, we will come face to face with some form of greenery – trees, bushes, shrubs, grass, meadows, flowers. I like to call them the children of the Earth – not just because they are the products of nature, but because they were truly borne out of the earth (!). Sadly, these children often get ignored as they stand, steadfast and quiet, in the peripheries of our vision. As Ralph Waldo Emerson aptly put across, “Many eyes go through the window, but few see the flowers in it”.  Busy city dwellers like us are so laser-focused on our goals that we never seem to have the time nor energy to appreciate the wonders of nature right at our doorstep. Yet despite the oblivion and ignorance we take towards them, they continue to do what they do best – grow. Regardless of the quality of soil, the amount of rain, the intensity of sunlight, the leaves and the flowers try their best to grow. In fact, they don’t just try to survive, they seek to be the best they can be, to maximize their potential. This is why the appearance of a successfully bloomed flower along the curb is such a magnificent sight – it symbols the relentless effort by the plant to complete its lifecycle. Imagine how much we can learn from these children of the Earth, if we only knew how to better appreciate their resilience and strength.

Flowers give us lessons in a few ways – they motivate us, they teach us self-love, and they nudge us to reflect. There’s no better way we can illustrate these than with a repertoire of inspirational quotes from the people who have taken the time to learn from flowers.

To motivate:

  1. “Every flower must grow through dirt.” – Laurie Jean Sennott
  2. “Even the tiniest of flowers can have the toughest roots.” – Shannon Mullen
  3. “Flowers grow out of dark moments.” – Corita Kent
  4. “What if the only purpose of a flower is to bloom without the sun. to prove that beauty will grow despite the constant darkness.: – Nitya Prakash
  5. “The flower that follows the sun does so even in cloudy days.” – Robert Leighton
  6. “Like wildflowers; You must allow yourself to grow in all the places people thought you never would.” – E.V.
  7. “Flowers don’t tell, they show.” – Stephanie Skeem

To teach self-love:

  1. “A flower does not think of competing with the flower next to it. It just blooms” – Zen Shin
    1. Each flower is stunning in itself
  2. “A flower blossoms for its own joy.” – Oscar Wilde
  3. “Flowers don’t worry about how they’re going to bloom. They just open up and turn toward the light, and that makes them beautiful.” – Jim Carrey
  4. “Every flower blooms in its own time.” – Ken Petti

To nudge reflection:

  1. “The quieter you become, the more you can hear” – Ram Dass
    1. When you stop and admire flowers, you quieten down and become more attentive to your surroundings
  2. “The fairest thing in nature, a flower, still has its roots in earth and manure.” – D. H. Lawrence
  3. “Happiness held is the seed; Happiness shared is the flower.” – John Harrigan
  4. “A flower’s appeal is in its contradictions – so delicate in form yet strong in fragrance, so small in size yet big in beauty, so short in life yet long on effect.” – Terri Guillemets
  5. “The fact that I can plant a seed and it becomes a flower, share a bit of knowledge and it becomes another’s, smile at someone and receive a smile in return, are to me continual spiritual exercises.” – Leo Buscaglia
  6. “If you look the right way, you can see that the whole world is a garden.” – Frances Hodgson Burnett
  7. “Raise your words, not your voice. It is rain that grows flowers, not thunder.” – Rumi
  8. “If we could see the miracle of a single flower clearly our whole life would change.” – Gautama Buddha

To Comfort:

“For every flower that I place on your grave, I think of all those things you did to make my life as beautiful and fragrant as a bed of flowers. I miss you.”

Flowers bring comfort to the bereaved family. That is why funeral flowers or condolence flowers are typically delivered to funeral wakes with words of love and comfort.

Language

“Nobody needs to know the language of flowers to send your sentiments with it.” – William Powell

Flowers are able to represent life and the entire spectrum of emotions that come with it – joy, love sadness, regret amongst many others. When we look at a flower, we aren’t just seeing their pretty exterior. When we look at a flower, we are looking at the product of weeks of dedicated growth and nurturing, the pride of having outgrown adversity, the sadness of its fallen comrades, and the hopes of continuing the cycle of life. Is that not a wonderful representation of life’s ups and downs? Therefore, with so many connotations behind a single bloom, sometimes there really isn’t any more need for words. In fact, when your own words don’t seem to do justice to your thoughts, consider expressing them with nature’s language – flowers.

We hope this article has provoked at least a tiny speck of desire to pay a little more attention to the flowers we live amongst. Pursue the goals you want to in life, but remember that there will always be a thing or two to learn from the nature around us.

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