Out with the old, in with the new

At the beginning of this year, I decided to do one thing per day that is bothering me. Whether it is to clear space in my closet, journal about my problems, read a book on something I’m struggling with, or take a new course to learn something new, I want to move forward this year instead of merely treading water— trying to survive. I hate when I adapt the barely-get-by mindset. Not only does it affect me, but it also affects everyone around me. It makes me feel bad and causes me to act in ways that I don’t want to act.

Ever since I made the declaration to myself, I have acted on it. I’ve realized as long as we hold onto the old, we can’t welcome the new into our lives. Especially when the old things take up our space. My phone wouldn’t work properly because it was out of space. I had tried all sorts of ways to fix it, but nothing worked. When I decided, however, to delete some of the old off of it, I suddenly acquired plenty of space for the new things to be added. It’s the same way with my closets, drawers, and cabinets. Most are just filled with clutter anyway. When I started going through them, however, I realized that I had forgotten about half of the stuff inside them and the other half was not serving me in any way. It was just taking up space in my life.

It’s the same way with our thoughts. As long as we hold onto our old thought patterns, then we can’t welcome new ones. In the same way, I examined each piece of clothing in my closet, I am examining my thoughts and asking myself these questions:

1. Does this help me right now in my life?

2. Does this limit me or inspire me?

3. Am I acting with faith or fear?

When I break down my thoughts and only react with faith, then it brings more peace into my life. However, our fears don’t just disappear. They rear their ugliness in my life all the time. Last night before I went to bed, I decided to journal about my fears. With the first word, tears were falling from my eyes. I continued writing and crying for several minutes. When I finished writing them down, I asked God to help me overcome them. With the morning light, nothing on my list seemed as devastating as it did the night before. When we acknowledge our problems and become willing in our hearts to work on them, then I believe God will provide the way. Most often times we just need to turn our worries and fears over to Him and trust Him to help us deal with each one.

Worrying about tomorrow’s troubles only takes away today’s peace. However, when we identify our problem, then we can create a plan to overcome it, and work towards our goal every day.

Candida Sullivan is an author and inspirational speaker. She lives in New Tazewell with her husband and kids. For more information about her books or to schedule her for your event, email her at candidasullivan@yahoo.com.