Do you ever feel like you can identify with Hamlet when he says “Something is rotten in the state of Denmark”?
And, by Denmark, I mean your refrigerator.
There’s some container that got pushed aaaaallllllll the way to the back in the dead zone. You know the place where you can’t see what’s there unless you stick your head completely in the fridge. And that container has something in it that no longer resembles consumable matter. In fact, you’re so afraid of it, you pretend that you didn’t see it.
Maybe the next chump who opens the fridge will take care of it.
Or maybe you’ve got a pretty foil peacock that been gracing a shelf in your refrigerator for a week…or two…or more. The problem is, you don’t remember getting that bird and you have no idea what could be inside it.
You DO remember when you got it and it was far too long ago. AND you DO know what’s inside and you believe the city might condemn your house for that ornate biohazard.
The temptation is to ignore it. The hope is that, if left alone, the stink might go away on its own. Or that someone else will deal with it. Or that you’ll sell your house and let the new owners discover the nasty.
The reality is that you have to deal with it. Pull on the yellow rubber gloves, get yourself a pair of tongs and a nose-clip (chip clips are great for this) and get rid of the problem. Put it in the dumpster and scrub your hands clean.
I’m rewriting A Cup of Dust (my novel in progress). There are parts that STINK! Yes, the capital letters and exclamation point are necessary. And, no, I’m not being humble.
There are parts of this novel that need a lot of work. And I’m the one who has to take care of the nasty.
I need to pull open the lid, try to identify the rotten parts and fix them. Often, that means tossing that offending section out.
If I ignore it, that stinky writing could taint the rest of the novel. If I leave it for someone else (for example, an editor), that someone else will be super annoyed…and they might not want to work with me again.
If I want my work to improve, I need to address the weak parts myself. I might need help, and that’s okay. But I have to be the one to do the fixing/cleaning/de-stink-ify-ing.
You know, I think that’s how life in general is, too.
We can’t let the stinky things keep…well…stinking up our lives. We need to address them. Clean them. Get rid of them.
Maybe it’s a toxic friendship or a job that is stealing all the joy out of life. It might be an addiction or an unhealthy view of ourselves. Perhaps we’ve let bitterness erode our souls or we’ve let self-doubt stop us from pursuing our dreams.
We’ve got to stop ignoring all the negativity in our lives. We can’t keep shoving it to a place we think we can’t see. We have to address it.
Get rid of it.
Squeeze some soap on our hands and scrub it off us.
It’s not easy. It’s down-right scary. And sometimes you need a good friend to hold your hand. If you’re one who prays, I do believe that is essential. Often we need to seek the help of a trained professional. There is NO SHAME in that, my friends. It takes great strength to admit that we need that level of help. Goodness knows I’ve been there and I grew in so many ways by reaching out.
As difficult as it is, there is an upside to tossing out the junk.
Dumping some negative and stinky ick can make room for some really great stuff. Love, forgiveness, joy, compassion, laughter…
Trust me. It’s worth it.
What about you? What are some negative things you need to dump so you can make room for great living? Have you ever gotten rid of something that cluttered and stunk up your days? How did you do it?