I was offering advice to a friend recently who was dealing with lots of stress. Jobs, family issues, social group issues like we all have and this person was in a state of overwhelm. It brought to mind something I learned long ago that I’d like to share.
Unpack your backpack.
My wife went to therapy many years ago and this sage piece of wisdom sprang from that. The therapist told her we all have a backpack that we carry bricks in, our life blocks…baggage. But the problem arises when we let others put their bricks into our backpack.
It can happen quickly or over time but we still find ourselves unnecesarily carrying around the weight of others. It’s not like they snuck them in, we allowed it, and now it’s brimming to the point we can’t even handle our own bricks.
She suggested to my wife to start taking the bricks out and giving them back to the owner. My wife has said that taking out that first 5 pound brick is the hardest part. But eventually, you become really good at it and you learn how to stop letting people load you up.
My good friend LouAnn Clark, author of “A Decided Difference: The Secret to Positive Change”, told me something once that goes hand in hand with this:
NO IS A COMPLETE SENTENCE.
Read that again and take it to heart.