There are two people in my life who seem to know this well. One is my dad, the other is my friend Christy. Whenever Dad gives me advice, he doesn’t tell me what I should do, he’ll tell me a story, a joke, a piece of wisdom that relates to what it is that he wants me do. One example of this is when he told me the shad story. When I was going through my divorce and dating men that were butt heads, he told me, “Alisha, there’s a type of fish out there that you can’t do anything with, you can’t cook it because it stinks and there’s nothing you can do, it will always stink. You might as well just throw it back. Alisha, stop trying to bring home shad.”
Hmmmm…I definitely stopped and listened to that one.
It happened twice again this week, only not through my dad. One was a blog that my friend Dana wrote. She wrote about cleaning out the b.s. in her life, and I thought how true that was for my life too. I had so much chaos going on around me that it was starting to affect me. I was stressed out, angry, and ready to pull my hair out because of drama that wasn’t my drama.
It was b.s.
So what did I do? I started clearing it out. I think not only do we spring clean our houses, I think we need to spring clean ourselves sometimes and we don’t do that. At least I don’t. I let things accumulate, little dust pockets of drama, until the mess simply becomes overwhelming. When all it would take is to clean it out. Get back down to the basics, organize. We need to figure out what’s important. Get rid of things that aren’t working, polish the ones that are.
And while I was thinking about this, and working on getting some matters “cleaned up”, I was having lunch with some friends of mine and Christy threw out this gem. “You have to keep people in your life who encourage you to grow.”
And how true that was too. It actually helped me make my mind up on one particular issue I was having. When people stop growing, they become stagnant, stuck in the same routines, the same problems, the same situations, until they learn whatever it is they need to learn. If they ever do.
It was like when I was single. I was stuck in the same situations, repeating the same actions over and over and of course getting the same results. When I learned what I needed to learn, it was time for something new. And now that I’m in a relationship, I’m learning so many new things. I’m learning about me, about compromise, and about communication. In many ways, I’m growing.
And in some ways, maybe I’m actually learning to listen in the process. 🙂
Here’s to cleaning, growing, and listening!