THE ALMOST DEFINITIVE GUIDE

How To Be A Weed

The glorious attributes needed to embrace your life as a weed

L Kingsleigh
· 6 min read

In a world of flowers, be a weed.

According to the all knowing Wikipedia

A weed is a plant considered undesirable in a particular situation, “a plant in the wrong place”. Examples commonly are plants unwanted in human-controlled settings, such as farm fields, gardens, lawns, and parks.

Have you ever thought about it? A wildflower is just a weed with a flower on top of it. Pretty basic right? It was kinda an a-ha moment for me, along with DUH!

A dandelion to a child is just as lovely as a rose. Even more wondrous when the tendrils fly magically into the air. To a child, a dandelion is never in the wrong place.

Photo by Arseny Togulev on Unsplash

Dandelions- Weeds, are typically a source of irritation to gardeners. Manicured landscapes devoid of weeds are prized in established neighborhoods. If just one dandelion or other nefarious weed pops up over night the weed militia are out in force immediately.


A weed is more than meets the eye! I did not know this! Scrolling through Facebook the other day a charming article was shared by a friend of mine. The headline was endearing. Little did I know this one article would change me in such a profound way. Here… I’ll share it below. It’s okay. Run read it. BUT be sure you find your way back here.

Did you read it? How amazing is this beautiful soul…

Trudy’s advice…

“Be a weed — then you belong to everywhere or anywhere.”

It caught me off guard. So completely off guard. Her words impacted my soul. I suddenly “got it”. All of the things “weeds” are began racing across the screen of my mind. I watched with awe as the “weeds” revealed meanings of life as deep to me as their roots.

The Joys of Being A Weed

  • Weeds are invasive — Weeds grow in places that are not their normal habitat. Which is basically what makes them a weed! AND… they thrive. They not only grow they THRIVE. To be a weed, get out of your normal habitat! Embrace the new and different.
  • Weeds reproduce aggressively — You’ve seen it happen. One weed pops up in the yard and literally over night you have a virtual weed family. Extended family and twice removed weed relatives having a reunion in your front yard. I’m not suggesting this type of reproduction but! What if you reproduced aggressively your writing, art, sculpture? Ms smith is definitely reproducing aggressively! And she’s 102!
  • Weeds survive in difficult environments — Weeds grow through cracks in concrete we can’t even see! They creep up the sides of buildings where there is basically NOTHING for them to latch onto. Ms smith mentions she is alone. All of her friends have… died. All her family is far younger than she. And yet she is surviving and enjoying her life. She stepped out of her loneliness and embraced her alone-ness.
‘Are We There Yet’ Trudy Smith
  • Weeds establish quickly — Weeds don’t play around. They don’t do market research or analysis. They land and establish. OUCH! No inner dialog or critic seconding guessing the decision.

Trudy’s advice is…

Just give anything a go.

  • Weeds don’t give up easily — Just when you think you’ve removed the last weed, you’ve gotten the root, that weed reappears just a few feet away. Weeds are tenacious like that. They don’t give up or give in. Weeds really are not concerned with your opinion of them. They keep coming back. Be a weed. Be tenacious!
  • Weeds spring to life after being dormant — A weed might not be in view in winter but you know as spring arrives the weed is ready to burst on the seen with a vengeance! It’s okay to be dormant. Take a break and lie low for a bit. Know that it’s only a stage. Your moment is coming. Shake yourself awake and get growing!
  • Weeds provide support for other weeds — If you see one weed in an area you most likely will see another weed of a different species. How perfect is this? The “outcasts” and “misfits” of the plant world give support to each other. What a novel idea. Being a weed gives you opportunity to help other “weeds” be prolific and tenacious!
Photo by Perry Grone on Unsplash
  • Weeds are beneficial — As much of a bad wrap as weeds get there is also great use for many of them. Many weeds are edible, some are used to break up hard pan in overly cultivated fields, still others act as mulch helping retain moisture in the ground. Can you be a weed? Can you help nourish someone’s soul, share a drink of cool friendship or ask the hard questions that lead someone to positive life changes? Be a weed and you can.
  • Weeds enrich the environment just by being there — We’ve already shown weeds are beneficial but they are also enriching. Certain species of weeds bring rich nutrients deep from within the ground up through their root systems to enrich the ground they are growing in. Ms smith is definitely enriching her environment through the art she creates but ALSO with her incredibly spirit. Your contributions through friendship, mentoring, creative endeavors, even a smile on your face enriches the environment your in. Embrace your weed-i-ness!
  • Weeds have a deep root system — Have you ever yanked on a weed? Pulled with all your strength? Me too. The weed won. That root system is what helps a root be tenacious. Your root system is what makes you, you. It’s how you look at life, what you read, the relationships you have and so much more. A healthy root system means a strong one. Toxic relationships, poor choices for diet and health, emotional struggles that need to be healed… these do NOT make strong roots. Get these out of your system and get those roots healthy!
Photo by Stephanie Krist on Unsplash

I’m choosing to be a weed. Not a unicorn. Not a sunflower instead of a rose or any of those other sayings floating around the web.

I want deep roots and tenacity. I’m ready to be invasive.

What about you?

“What would the world be, once bereft,

of wet and wildness? Let them be left.
O let them be left; wildness and wet;

Long live the weeds and the wilderness yet.”

— Gerard Manley Hopkins’ poem Inversnaid

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L Kingsleigh

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Write. Create. Breathe. Celebrate. Keep going. Starting over is always allowed!

The Startup

Medium's largest active publication, followed by +477K people. Follow to join our community.