Seeds of Freedom – the Review

by Amy Porter on September 6, 2011

By Tamyre Diamond

Is this all there is?  Heather Marie Wilson is an bright, articulate, well-educated business professional.  She was an executive in a Fortune 50 company for 20 years:  successful but trapped, “like a hamster on a wheel, running after success.”  She was bored, living alone and totally stressed out.  She felt trapped and unable to make changes.  What paralyzed her the most is that she didn’t know what she truly wanted.  All she knew was that her job was making her miserable and she had to do something different.   Her new book, “Seeds of Freedom” is the result of this journey about searching for one’s true self..  She wrote down the lessons she learned using the analogy of a garden.  She encourages the reader to ask questions in order to get the information they need to change their lives.  According to Ms. Wilson, “It takes courage to dig deep within our souls, but it is the only way that we will find true happiness, fulfillment, and freedom.”

There are five elements in her garden: earth, water, air, fire and spirit.  The earth is related to our sense of security, “our roots.” Miss Wilson states, “Having strong roots means that you can trust and believe that you will always be cared for and have what you need to survive, because the earth will give it to you.”  Water in a garden is essential to health and well-being.   Ms. Wilson relates the force of water to our emotional connections, movement, and the health of our physical, intellectual, and emotional selves.  Fire is related to a person’s vocation.  It is your “internal flame” and is described as your life’s work:  who are you and what is your role in life?  The author encourages the reader to use their fire in order to give themselves courage to move beyond their fears.  She wants you to use this fire to establish boundaries, so it doesn’t get extinguished or rage wildly out of control because of external forces.     Air was related to the relationships in our lives.   “Do your current relationships provide you with room to breathe, or are they stifling and controlling?”   Lastly, spirit was related to creative expression.   It was defined as the “spark of divine” and the “element of limitless possibilities.”  Miss Wilson believes we need to authentically connect with something greater than ourselves, the flow of creation, in order to find joy, fulfillment and freedom.

On the path of exploration, the author encourages us to cultivate each area of our garden by focusing, rooting, nourishing, growing, and connecting.  We also need to engage in balancing, clearing, and renewing in order to create a new life.  Begin by focusing on what matters to you.  What are your core values?  Next, the author recommends that you make a mission statement.  Then image your life with no boundaries.  She wants you to put all this in writing and practice these positive visualizations daily.  Rooting was defined as digging deep within yourself in order to open your heart and clear your mind.  Daily meditation practice was recommended.  Nourishment relates to taking care of ourselves.   In order to make any kind of change, it is recommended that you give yourself extra attention and to do that by learning self-love.  People fail to make changes because they don’t see themselves as worthy.   Miss Wilson wants to remind us that not only are we worthy of love, but we too are love itself.  “It’s when we love ourselves enough to breathe into all aspects of ourselves and accept whatever rises through us – be it fear, unworthiness, anger, or rage – that we’re able to get the sustenance we need to grow.”   Growth isn’t optional, because change is the only constant in life.  It involves some pain but freedom comes from learning and doing and trying new things.  We need to connect to ourselves in order to connect with others and the universe.  We do this by following our hearts and trusting our intuitions.  This interconnectiveness involves balance:  giving and receiving.  Balance comes from just “being” more so than doing.  The author recommends breathing exercise.  Next you must clear your field for new growth.   Clear your environment of clutter.  Mentally clear through journaling, meditation, positive affirmations, and by setting appropriate boundaries in order to care for ourselves.  Physically clear by moving your body to clear blocked energy.  Emotionally clear by drinking water or taking a sea-salt bath.  Spiritually cleanse by forgiving yourself and other and surrendering to the universe while still claiming your personal power. Renewal involves remembering that there is a season for everything in our lives.  In every life or garden there needs to be time for rest  .We need to be willing to adapt and change and occasionally let go of whatever didn’t work.

If you are looking for a “Eat, Pray, Love” type of memoir, this isn’t it.  Heather Marie Wilson shares parts of her life with us in “Seeds of Freedom” but I felt that she didn’t give us part of her soul. A really great self-help memoir requires an author to make themselves painfully vulnerable to the reader – kind of like when a dog rolls over, shows his belly, and exposes his throat.  It is the ultimate act of courage and by sharing the full nature of their humanness they remind us that it is okay for us to be human too.  We revel in their successes because they have fully shared their failures and we know how far they have come in their journey.    What Miss Wilson does provide is a lot of good ideas in a well organized format.  She shares with us universal wisdom.  She is a teacher trying to share with us the results of her learning.  I admire her courage to quit her job and to have a book published is a great accomplishment.  I believe that one foot still remains fully grounded in that business world.   This book feels like a business consultant’s guide to self-help.  Ever the sloppy romantic, I have to ask, “Is this all there is?”

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