There’s a drawer in my bathroom where lipsticks goes to die.  That stick that wasn’t quite the right color but I might want it one day or the sticks my sister gave me because she’s not using that brand anymore, I just drop them in the drawer.  And, my personal favorites, the ones that were the perfect color and I used them completely but there is still some good lipstick in the tube that can be dug out with a Q-tip, are in the drawer.  Here’s the problem: there are also some essential things in that drawer like toothpaste and a toothbrush, makeup brushes and hair ties — things I use daily or multiple times a day. They are hard to find because there is so much dying lipstick in there.    

Count 'em.  Can you find 12?

Count 'em.  Can you find 12?

As I wrestled with getting what I needed out of that drawer today, I was reminded that we do this in life.  We hang onto things we don’t need — things that aren’t serving us anymore.  The phone conversation that left you feeling uncared for, the worry about your children or finances or job that keeps playing on repeat in your brain, the terrible hurt that left you brokenhearted years ago are all like my lipsticks.  They are taking up space in a place that you need to actually use multiple times a day and they make it difficult for you to use that space well.

As we say goodbye to 2016, it’s the perfect time to release some of the things that are not worth keeping.  Cue Disney’s Frozen “Let it Go” by Idina Menzel.  When we hang on to worry, pain, stress, ____ (you fill in the blank), it holds us in a victim mentality and keeps us blaming others.  We’ll never find joy there.  

We have a choice — hang on to things that hold us back or let go of them.  Maybe you need to enlist some extra support to let things go or perhaps you just need to get still and let yourself work some of it out.  Take a step today because no one needs an entire drawer devoted to the death of lipstick.