Bloom where you are planted

In meme culture, we often see quotes or slogans that stir us, without understanding the origin. We apply them to our lives and repeat them to ourselves as a mantra, but understanding the root can provide a much richer knowledge.

The saying “Bloom where you are planted” was originally attributed to The Bishop of Geneva, Saint Francis de Sales in his book “Introduction to the Devout Life.” Recently the phrase has been popularized as a calling to triumph in the face of adversity. I fully support this notion and there are countless stories and blog posts about this already, including situations in your own life that I’m sure you can think of.

Yet in the original usage, it was a call to spirituality. The motivation behind it was to urge individuals along when they first felt a calling to transform their lives.

It wasn’t so much about blooming when you’ve been planted somewhere that isn’t ideal as it was an encouragement to bloom when you felt you’d had the benefit of being planted. It was a call to purposeful action.

When you feel you’ve been called, when you feel you’ve been planted somewhere for a distinct purpose, this should not be ignored. Ignoring it will cause you to whither as surely as someone who refuses to bloom when their outlook isn’t sure.

Certainly, try blooming if you’ve been planted somewhere you’d rather not be. The blossoms you produce may yet yield fruit. But once you feel a purposeful planting by the hands of one who created the universe and chose to plant you in it, follow your purpose.

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