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Bloom Where You Are Planted...Or Leave

Updated on September 27, 2017
Karen Hellier profile image

Karen Hellier is a freelance writer and eBay entrepreneur. She lives happily in the mountains of North Georgia with her husband and her dog.


I have often heard the expression, “Bloom Where You Are Planted.” I always liked it because I interpreted it to mean "make the most of your situation wherever you may be." But as of late I have been doing quite a bit of traveling, and I am not so sure I agree with that expression anymore. At least not regarding where you live geographically. I suppose if you don’t have a choice in the matter, it is a good idea to try to bloom where you are planted. But what if where you are planted is a stifling environment for you? What if your roots, so to speak, can’t get enough nutrients where you are? Should you allow yourself to live an existence where you can’t reach your full potential? Should you allow yourself to wither and die? Or, should you pull up those roots and move to another place, a climate either literally or figuratively to which your roots or your soul are more suited?

Bora Bora has an Interesting Way of Life

I recently visited the French Polynesian island of Bora Bora. The tour guide told us that young people there only go to school till they are 16. Then they decide whether or not they want to continue in school, or get a job. In the United States, many youths at the age of 16 know that school is not for them. They would love to quit and go work at a job to earn money to help support their family, or to use their hands on skills to do something of value in this world. But they are encouraged by adults to stay in school, etc. and made to feel quite badly if they don’t. In Bora Bora, many families are happy to live in small homes that in some cases are little more than shacks. But they are in one of the most beautiful places in the world. And their shacks are right on gorgeous bays of bright blue water. As long as they have fishing boats, they are happy because between the fish they catch daily, and the fruit trees in their yards, they have enough food to feed their family. They do not need cars to go off to work but instead use mopeds which require much less gas. Some people do work. They work in the tourist trade or create crafts for tourists to buy to help offset any unexpected expenses that may come their way. If that high school student in the U.S. was born in Bora Bora, it would be the norm at 16 to be done with school.

Amsterdam Has a Different Spin on Things

In Amsterdam, while drug use is illegal, people can go to some coffee shops, buy their coffee, and buy smoking materials such as small amounts of marijuana and smoke it while enjoying the company of good friends. Activities such as this are ignored by the police. In the United States, if this were to happen, the people involved would be ticketed and in some cases arrested for possession and sent to court and possibly jail. Also in Amsterdam, many adults use bikes as their main form of transportation. Not only is this healthier for them and the environment, but it saves them money as well. There is no need to buy a car, register and insure it, pay taxes on it, pay exorbitant prices for gasoline, pay for overnight parking, etc. In the United States, most people that ride bikes as a main source of transportation are looked at as weird, or for being too “green.”If they lived in Amsterdam, they would fit in well with others who have their same belief system.

Another State Might Do the Trick

I am not writing this to convince everyone that they need to move to another country. Another state or another town may do just as well. My friend and her husband love to golf but can’t do it year round in the Northeast. They recently put their house on the market and are going to Florida as soon as it sells. They have been down to Florida and have already found the town they want to live in. They don’t like the cold weather and the snow shoveling that comes with living in New England. Snow is not conducive to either of them being able to bloom, so they are leaving. More power to them I say.

I have lived in Connecticut since the age of three. As I grew up, I realized that I didn’t like it here in this state. It’s too hot and humid in the summer. And I find it boring. Connecticut is flat except for a few hills in the center of the state. And although it is on the shore, it’s on the shore of the Long Island Sound, with no waves on its beaches. Connecticut is a boring state in my mind, and I am not happy here. I am wilting in Connecticut. I am a mountain girl in my heart and finally am learning to stop complaining about being stuck here, and am making plans to move out of state to the mountains as soon as I can take care of wrapping things up regarding real estate here. Mountains make me happy and are cooler than the lower geographic areas. I have decided that now is the time for me to move. I decided that years ago, but there were some family issues that needed to be resolved before I could go. And now those issues have been cleared up. Life is too short not to be where I can bloom. I am picking up my roots and moving to a land that is better suited for my roots and my soul to grow.


In August of 2014, my husband and I moved to the mountains North Georgia, and I am no longer wilting in Connecticut. I am now able to work from home as a freelance writer and eBay store owner. I am finally happy and at peace and the forests and mountains are good for my soul.

Are You Blooming?

How about you? Are you able to bloom where you are planted? Have you been stuck there for awhile with your roots in the soil too shallow to be happy? Is there not enough sunshine to help you reach your full potential? Or do you need to move somewhere else where you can bloom and grow?

If you are planning on moving, here's a great book that helped us get ready to put our house on the market...


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