Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Does it bring you joy?

Say you were 13 years old when you purchased a ceramic frog on a field trip. It was cute and reminded you of a fun time. Your friends noticed and bought more frogs for your birthdays. Your parents bestowed more ceramic frogs plus added a frog themed Christmas ornament every year. Someone gave you a frog pendant made of precious metal. Grandmother began annual gifts of porcelain frog themed Limoges boxes. Frog motif gifts every time you turned around. Now you are older and you've got frogs coming out the ass and to realize it all started with one ceramic frog you selected. Every frog since then has been selected by others.

So here's the question: Do all of those frogs bring you joy? Did they ever? Get real and get honest.

Is the original frog the only one you want to keep? Or maybe just the Christmas ornaments? Or should the entire collection go away? You are not obligated to keep something that you liked before. You are not obligated to keep a collection you didn't want. You can keep the memory. You can take photographs of you favorites. Or add a frog charm to your charm bracelet to represent that entire collection.

You can pass that collection to someone that would LOVE it. Maybe your niece comments about one particular frog each time she visits. Set it aside for her but don't perpetuate the problem by giving her all the frog stuff.

Inform your friends and family that you are no longer collecting frogs. I guarantee they'll ask what you are collecting now. Be careful with your answer. Tell them your new desired item only if you want to start the process all over again but here's what I say and it has stopped the flow of crap: I collect Waterford crystal (not little figurines and dust catchers) AND crisp $100 bills. Go for quality.

Gonna drop a deep thought on you now. Think about it before you react.

If you keep something that doesn't bring you joy,

you are being selfish.

That's right, selfish, my friends.

But it's yours, right? How is that selfish?

Well, think of it this way: you no longer enjoy the frog collection, you keep most of it in a closet, it never sees the light of day and no one else can enjoy it. Give it away, sell it, whatever - let those frogs bring someone else joy. Doesn't that make you happy to imagine someone's eyes will light up when they spy the perfect frog? Doesn't someone else's joy make it easier to give up?

Only keep items that bring you joy.
And understand that joy can change over time.

1 comment:

Deanna said...

Made me recall a fugly frog cookie jar then-boyfriend-now husband-of-18-yrs had when we moved in together. He thought I liked it and I thought he liked it. Turned out we both hated it! We had it on our fridge for years before we figured it out!!