I first heard the saying "bloom where you're planted" when I was in college. I was talking with a friend who was a year or two older, expressing my dissatisfaction with living in the Midwest and how I longed to live somewhere else. I don't recall the specific dissatisfaction--maybe I was dissatisfied with local culture, the climate, or state politics. Whatever it was, when I was done making my case for why I would be much better somewhere else, she looked at me in an neutral, matter-of-fact way and said, "You can bloom wherever you're planted." I was stopped in my tracks. I felt the truth--and the freedom--in her words to my core.
Over the years the truth in this concept has sunk in more deeply, offering levels of interpretation that go beyond physical location alone. The underlying message for me is that no matter what your physical circumstances are (location, environment, physical body, finances, relationships, current skills and talents) you can either choose to focus on how a different set of circumstances would be easier or more desirable, or you can choose to focus on taking the next steps to grow from where (and who) you are.
When left unchecked, our critical minds tend toward dissatisfaction and comparison, seeing the grass ever greener over there. If you find yourself falling into this line of thinking, it's rather normal, so don't be too hard on yourself. Appreciate your awareness. Think of the seed that happened to land in the crack on a sidewark, or the tree you saw growing off a cliff made of seemingly pure rock. Recall the flowers that sprout and bloom from the most unlikely places, and see if you can take a step toward acceptance--of yourself, your situation, and how you got here. Simply taking a breath and saying to yourself. "I am willing to accept this situation" can create the opening for a shift.
The wonderful and maddening thing about acceptance is that when you finally do reach acceptance of what is before you and where you're at, that's when the door opens to your next step.
Inspiration is everywhere--even in the cracks in the sidewalk. Begin where you are.