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  • Writer's pictureAbby Prendergast


I’ve been wrestling with my tendency to move and change my environment over the past few months. As a nomadic personality type who loves to change it up, travel and experience new places, it can be tempting to adopt a ‘grass is greener’ attitude when the challenges of trying to lay down some roots here in Sheffield (having moved back last October) once again begin to rear their head. There are many times I have questioned my decision to return to this lovely city I once called home, which has moved on, as I have, during our 7 year break from one another.

Some days the isolation and sense of responsibility that comes with trying to establish and create a life and a viable business as a Herbalist feel overwhelming. The countryside calls to me and even Sheffield with its beautiful green spaces, gives way to feelings of frustration, claustrophobia and imaginative wanderings to the possibility of a different kind of lifestyle, far removed from the city, where financial worries magically evaporate and I finally fulfil the craving for a real sense of belonging.

Last night at our weekly buddhist meeting, we were discussing the concept of ‘oneness of self and the environment’, the premise that we are inextricably connected to our environment in such a way that our environment is a reflection of the inner workings of ourselves. We can see this principle manifesting in life through the results we experience when we de-value and disregard our environment, seeing ourselves as somehow separate from our environment and nature, leading to the current crises we are collectively facing, such as climate change and the destruction and loss facing humanity and our precious planet earth.

Reflecting on this inseparable nature between us and our environment, I can clearly feel my own responsibility and begin to take on a sense of ownership for whichever environment I find myself in, be this challenges with work, relationships, finances etc. Knowing that my environment is a mirror which reflects back to me the innermost workings of my heart and intentions, I begin to experience a sense of empowerment, knowing that the solution to each problem I appear to be outwardly facing, lies with my own internal transformation and change.

And so I sit gently with the realisation that no matter how I may fantasise about making a physical move elsewhere, where somehow my business will be instantly successful and all my financial struggles alleviated, the true joy lies in this place right here, exactly where I am, tackling my own self-doubt and negativity in order to make a deep, lasting transformation and create something of true depth and value for myself and my community.

Gratitude wells up in me as I acknowledge my many blessings and the wonderful good fortune of discovering an area of work in herbal medicine that I am so passionate about which really makes my heart sing. I rest easy knowing that the journey is more valuable than the destination and that in fact my life is exactly where it’s meant to be, with all the muck, grime, bad days and good days that the adventure brings. I feel so grateful to be here in Sheffield, to have the opportunity to create something I love with the intention to serve and support my community to the best of my ability. Even when I feel that things are moving more slowly than I’d like them too, I can take a moment to appreciate the connections, precious roots, friendships and opportunity to grow that come with remaining still in this place.

So thank you Sheffield and to all the wonderful people of this city for allowing me to call this place home and to share my hearts intentions and work with you. I know that together we can create something beautiful.

herbs, gratitude, hands, woman standing

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