Are You Buried Beneath Rubbish?
A recent article I read in The
, talked about a growing group of
well-educated city dwellers who are becoming known as freegans. These
are anti-consumerism people who practice dumpster-diving, searching for
everything from food to treasures in a dumpster.
How many of us are attempting to find our treasures beneath a pile of
rubbish? It can sound like a crazy thought for most people, but the
reality is that is exactly what a lot of us are doing! And it may not
even be happening at a conscious level.
We may not literally be climbing into a dumpster and digging around for
our treasure but the analogy here is that we have allowed our lives to
become filled with rubbish—emotional, physical, spiritual garbage that
we tote around with us every day. It weighs us down and feels like an
enormous burden but still we laboriously carry it around because we
can’t find a way to take out the trash. Then from beneath this heavy
load we seek to find happiness, love, a sense of peace—and wonder why
nothing in our lives seems to be going right.
Trust me on this, I am not preaching. I am speaking to you from the
bottom of my own dumpster-diving excursion. As a TV newscaster/on-air
personality in the United States, I have had my fill of trash that has
complicated, cluttered, and literally obliterated my path to success on
I too have allowed internal garbage to build up in my life. I have even
found that it accumulates from the inside out. Negative thoughts and
wicked condemning words that I tell myself, fill me up. Despite
thinking that these messages may serve as conscientious criticism, they
lack a necessary loving approach to truly create change. These messages
do not empower me. I forget or sometimes am left powerless to dump the
rubbish! We wouldn’t think of letting our physical trash accumulate
We take out the trash from our kitchens, bathrooms, bedrooms, and
garages, and put it neatly into a garbage can outside. We then feel
clean and clear. But when it comes to making an internal sweep of the
clutter and trash polluting our minds and our souls, we slam the door
tightly—locking the rubbish inside.
The garbage inside is our worries, fears, grudges, anxieties, feelings
of hatred, guilt, and unforgiveness. And like all garbage, this mixture
rots, becoming even more of a mess.
If you look at the outside of a banana that’s starting to spoil, you
see that its beautiful yellow color is marked with black spots. But if
you’re really hungry and it’s the only banana in the house, you might
tell yourself that the spots aren’t too dark. When you peel it, though,
you see the true impact and depth of the spoilage. By the time the rot
was visible on the outside of the banana, it had already wreaked havoc
on the inside. This is what happens to you when your emotional pain
remains unexpressed, unpeeled, and unacknowledged.
When we acknowledge our emotions but not let them run—and ruin—our
lives, we find that we can root out the feeling or emotion that may be
limiting successful behavior.
What is your emotional rubbish doing to you? How deep are the scars of
sibling rivalry; a major fight with your spouse; a confrontation with a
co-worker; a hated job; a mind-set that whispers, “I am not good
When we’re stuck in bad times and buried beneath emotional garbage,
it’s hard to ever imagine that good times are ahead.
Good moments seem to wear out and slip away quickly, while the bad
times and the self-defeating emotions that come with them, such as
worries and fears, are built with heavy-duty batteries—you’ll wear out
before they do. Not only do the old worries and fears keep going on and
on, but there’s an endless supply of new worries in the world.
You can choose to feel better. You don’t have to remain buried beneath
One of the most inspiring statements I’ve ever heard is so grounded in
reality that it’s often overlooked— “When bad times happen, remember
this too shall pass. When good times happen, remember this too shall
Life is about change; whether it’s good times or bad, the circumstances
will eventually change. If you don’t want to deal with change, get in
the box; after you’re dead, you don’t have to deal with change or
stress. However, while you’re alive, choose to really live. Welcome
change and challenges as an opportunity to grow and develop into the
person you intend to be. Don’t let the fear of change rob you of a
fulfilling life. You do matter in this world; why not live fully and
Getting there is a process—a journey into the fantastic opportunity to
explore our feelings and emotions and rid our lives of that which is
not serving to better ourselves.
Recognizing the important role you do play in this world is the first
step to becoming a catalyst for success. Our challenges as well as our
rewarding experiences in life often touch not only us but those we know
or may never know. An action you take today can fuel a response in
another person close or even far away. This is the power and proof that
you matter in this world.
So when rubbish starts to build up and you feel overwhelmed, find
comfort in taking out the trash and clearing your head; this will
reveal treasures. The steps that get you to where you want to be lie in
what you create in the present moment. Catch your thoughts right now.
Are you thinking about a problem or a solution? Are your thoughts
centered on what you want to make bigger in your life? Or are they
dwelling in confusion, frustration, worry, fear, anger? Where your
thoughts go so too does your life.
Right now, in this moment, you can change your attitude, your life, and
the experiences you will have in the future. Through your spiritual
faith and your persistent, diligent efforts to keep a vigilant eye on
your mind’s thoughts, you can create the life you desire that is absent
of the rubbish that’s held you back.
Perhaps the most effective approach for me has been to write down
affirmations and visions of the life I intend to live. The energy that
I invest in visualizing the outcomes creates a transparent view of
where I am today and where I wish to be. My desires are realized with
such swift speed that I am amazed nearly every time I make this effort.
It is what all successful people do to create greatness in their lives.
They believe. They see a vision. They determine to get the rubbish out
of their lives. And then they make room for their true treasures. They
take out the trash daily and sometimes multiple times throughout a
day—so that their lives are not buried beneath rubbish! ###
Phoebe Chongchua’s book about making room for success in your life, If the Trash
Stinks, Take it Out!