The things you carry, often unseen by those around you, affect who you are and how able you are to make a life you like. What are you carrying? Let’s take a look.
What are you carrying?
First Lieutenant Jimmy Cross carried letters from a girl named Martha, a junior at Mount Sebastian College in New Jersey. They were not love letters, but Lieutenant Cross was hoping, so he kept them folded in plastic at the bottom of his rucksack.
So begins the novel The Things They Carried by author Tim O’Brien. O’Brien explores the hopes and dreams of men fighting in Vietnam, as we follow them through actual, physical battles but equally important the battles each man fights within himself.
You look fine.
Part of the challenge of the times we are living in is that you are more than likely not actively serving in the military right now, which is to say you are not visibly in a war zone. If you were, it would be more apparent that yes, of course you are engaged in an existential battle. But the fact that you are probably reading this from the comfort of your living room or office means that we don’t even see how hard it is for you to make it through this day. You look fine.
But you’re not, are you?
So how can we get at what you’re carrying in your “rucksack?” It’s hard enough for a woman to get the support she wants. And while I’m sure that some would disagree, it seems to me that men have an even harder time getting the emotional support they need right now, because it is either actually the nature of women to seek emotional support, or it has become the cultural norm in this country that men suck it up and keep marching, to their own detriment.
It’s time to open up what you’re carrying on your back and take a look inside. You might be surprised how relatively simple it is to step off the trail for a moment, open up the flap and see what’s in there.
Lighten your load.
At least some of what you are carrying can be either removed or repurposed for another day. The main challenge is to stop long enough to take a look at what you’ve been carrying, maybe for years, without even realizing what it’s costing you.
Take a look inside your rucksack, and make some conscious decisions about what to keep carrying.
Want more help?
I can help you lighten your load.