What Needs Pulling In Your Life?

I took the above picture of one of my flower beds in my backyard last week.

It’s a succulent garden, and it can withstand a lot of weather; high winds, dry conditions, three feet of snow and even my dachshunds sunning themselves on its thick, inviting bed of comfort.

One thing it can’t withstand is crabgrass. If you examine either side of the retaining blocks, you can see the patches I tended to before the cold, wet weather set in.

See the middle section. That area is nothing but dirt because I didn’t get it weeded in time.

The crabgrass grew tall; it came in fast and thick, and it choked out the life of my plants as they tried to push their way through the tough environment. The battle was fierce, and well, you can tell which plant won by the barren spot left in the picture. It left me no other choice but to rip out the entire section and start over with a new batch of plants.

As I was pulling the weeds that had won the battle, I couldn’t help but notice the similarities between my flower bed and daily living.

A garden takes a lot of work. It needs nourishment, and plants placed where they will thrive, grow and reach their full potential. A garden also needs to have the weeds removed that work so hard to push their way in choking the life out of the plants I love.

“Life is like a beautiful garden. Remember to pull the weeds and water the flowers.” ~ Sal

Life can be like my garden.

Weeds rob essential moisture, nutrients, and sunlight of plants.

Weeds in life can rob us of the energy, beauty, and positivity we need to reach our full potential. Our root systems can become weak and prevent us from thriving in our environment.

So what happens when the weeds of life create an environment that limit, control and choke the life out of us?

Last year, I faced a situation where I had to remove a section in my life because the environment had become toxic. The truth was it had been toxic long before that, but I tried to dig my roots in deep and weather the storm I knew was brewing.

But the crabgrass of life grew taller, thicker, and before I knew it, it had taken over a part of my life, casting its towering stature over me. Every day became a struggle in finding the light I needed to push through the darkness, and as it engulfed me, I lost my will even to try.

The weeds of negativity, bitterness, and darkness weighed me down causing me to wither into a person I didn’t recognize any longer. Every day became an emotional struggle, and eventually, the winds of negativity overtook me. Through a series of events, I ended up taking time off to step back and review what areas in my life needed replanting to be happier, more productive and my authentic self. Once I determined what needed to stay and what needed to go, I made significant changes.

Weeding is as important as planting new seeds.

“When someone treats you like an option, help them narrow their choices by removing yourself from the equation.” ~ Robert Taw

During our lives, we meet many people. Most will bring beauty and comfort to us while others will discourage and hurt us with negative aspects that try to destroy the very essence of our life. The secret is remembering that life is full of seasons and sometimes relationships evolve or dissolve.

And that’s okay.

Removing undesirable elements that cause detrimental effects is important in sustaining a positive life. We need to tend to ourselves before things choke out our passion and drive. We need to place ourselves in an environment that cause us to thrive and grow and not compromise who we are becoming.

We should not allow guilt to make us feel obligated to keep others in our lives because the truth is, we tend to become like those we interact with each day.

I know I did.

The negative, resentful aspects of the environment I was in caused me only to see the negative in situations and people around me. By stepping away from my current surrounding, I took a good hard look and evaluated who I wanted to be versus who I had allowed myself to become.

When we weed out the negative influences, we allow the positive to bloom, expand and thrive.

The past year has been an enlightening journey. It isn’t always easy to remove the weeds in our lives, but it is necessary to ensure our lives can produce beauty, freedom, and peace. And sometimes the best way to do that is by cutting ties with whoever or whatever is holding you down.

When was the last time you evaluated your life? What elements do you need to weed out to live a more beautifully authentic life?

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