brick by brick

Do you ever just feel like you need to get away? Not always necessarily away from your home (that too though), but just away from yourself. Somehow get out of your own head and away from everything you can’t seem to piece together. It all becomes overwhelming. And the drama from those around you can just add to your suffering if you allow it. It’s so easy to let problems that aren’t yours become problems you force upon yourself.

I can’t remember exactly where I heard this. But there is this analogy that describes our anxieties, and worries and problems—and how they pile up. It’s called the backpack: We always have this imaginary backpack hanging off our shoulders. Every negative thing inside our brain becomes a brick, and all of the bricks get stored in the backpack.. After a while, the bricks start adding up and our muscles ache from the weight we now carry. It’s difficult enough to carry our own bricks, so when we let other people add theirs to ours, it just becomes overwhelming. And what’s even worse is that you know when someone is taking advantage of you, but you still let them add brick after brick. For some reason it makes sense in your mind; you think it’s what nice people do—take on everyone else’s problems along with their own. And that’s where you’re wrong. There comes a time when you have to stop always being the nice one. You can’t do everything and you can still be a good person without letting others take advantage of you. There is a difference between making sure someone is okay, and being the one who constantly makes them okay.

The best way to reduce the weight of your backpack is to just start. Take the very first brick off the top and deal with it, then throw it to the ground and watch it shatter. It won’t ever be empty and it will be a constant battle to keep the weight manageable. That’s just how it is. And it’s one of the best feelings in the world to watch those bricks break into hundreds of pieces when they fall.


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