This Flower is Growing All Over the Place!

Whilst attempting to work with myself to figure out my “flower,” I ended up coming to the conclusion that I do think it was helpful to think a little more in-depth about self-reflection and my own standards. However, I do not think I actually learned anything from the exercise that comes from Richard N. Bolles’ What Color is Your Parachute? As a skeptic for many exercises and “ busy work” such as this I am not honestly surprised with both the ease and difficulty I had with different petals on this flower. Honestly, I did not realize just how many of these “petals” I already had thought out and decided until now (always nice to give yourself more perspective).

I did indeed learn that the easiest and quickest petal for me to be able to complete was petal number six, or my preferred places to live and the geographical factors I would like. For me, the where has always been the most important thing, as I have always believed that I can find my perfect home and job as long as I know that I will be able to love the place in which I get to experience both. My top 3 places to live have always, and I mean always, been easy for me to rattle off the second someone asks where I would want to move to after college. In a very particular order, the first would have to be the Pacific Northwest, specifically Oregon. I have not only always been drawn to the beautiful mountain coast area, but I want nothing more than to be surrounded by beautiful and seemingly endless natural wonder (great for inspiration!). The second option would be to go back to my roots and move back to the United Kingdom, living somewhere beautiful like Brighton or Surrey (where my family is from). Last and not at all least is somewhere up in New England, though I have not fully narrowed down where specifically up there I would choose.

Geographical factors, for me, have always been a place where I do not want to settle with. I forever want to be around nature or natural beauty, but I have indeed come to the conclusion that I cannot realistically run away and live as a hermit in the woods (sadly enough). However, I do not think I could ever happily live my whole life in the middle of a concrete jungle, or a city as some people like to call it. I refuse, and I mean refuse, to ever settle for living the rest of my life in a place I do not even want to call home. Even further, I know I will never work nearly as well or as hard as I could if I did not love where I was doing it.


Now for the difficult part. Petals five and seven were definitely the most difficult for me to attempt to come to a solid conclusion on. Petal five works with the responsibilities and preferred salary range I would like to achieve. While I know for some this may be much easier, for me it causes problems due to my own philosophy on happiness. How to tell my parents that I would rather work a simple coffee shop job with a small salary, as long as I could live where I was happy and get by easily enough. Yeah, they’re thinking probably exactly what you are, but salary has never ever been an important part of my life decisions (though I know it probably should).

I have gotten to the point where I just want to be happy, which comes to petal number seven or my mission in life. As lame or cheesy as it may sound, I have only ever wanted to work or write in hopes of affecting or changing at least one person’s mindset. While I know I won’t end world hunger or anything like that, all I want is to (hopefully) pursue a career in journalism, where I know I can happily write for the sake of creating change. Whether it be in just changing a person’s mindset or informing them of things they might have never been able to think of prior. I want to create change.

One Response to This Flower is Growing All Over the Place!

  1. Prof VZ April 7, 2023 at 2:57 pm #

    Thanks for this reflection. I’m glad you were able to battle through some of the tedium and arrive at some helpful insights–if not to discover something new, then at least to reaffirm what is most important to you. I find your commitment to place admirable. So many jobs can take you to places you simply don’t want to be–culturally, geographically, and so on. It really does start with place. Fortunately, you have a rather generous spread to work with (west coast, east coast, some trees perhaps). I also appreciate your clear sense of values that drive your eventual work–the idea that, even on a small scale, you want to be able to make in impact in someone’s life. Very admirable!

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