Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Drop the shovel...

Sometimes you just watch your friends shovel themselves into the hole that they are in.  You can see the complaints coming ahead "Help! I'm stuck in a hole!" but you know if you say, "Hey, if you keep digging, you might find yourself in a hole shortly" they won't stop.  And they always look surprised to find themselves in the hole.

Sometimes they'll get a rope and some help out of the hole, but often they just begin to start making steps out of the hole when, oops, there goes that damn shovel again.  There they go digging like they're in that old 80s video game of Dig Dug.  And there, again, is that surprise: "What? How did this happen? How did I get in this hole?"

So, next time you find yourself in a hole, and wondering how you got there, check your own hands: are you holding a shovel? Often the answer to how to get yourself out of a hole is to begin by stopping digging.

Drop the shovel.  And just because you begin to get your head out of the hole and think you're out of it, don't pick up the shovel again.  Look around.  Is your whole body out of the hole? No? And why do you need that shovel anyway?  Where exactly do you think you'll go?

This happens with relationships, with money, with possessions, with dreams, with all sorts of scenarios.  We find ourselves in holes.  It's natural.  It happens sometimes.  But for goodness' sakes, just drop the shovel.  And drop the surprise.  And, um, the whining.  Yeah.  That too.  And find a way to work your way out of the hole.  Chances are you didn't get in the hole overnight - it takes a long time to dig a hole deep enough for us to fit in - and chance are, then, you won't get out overnight.  Do the hard work.


  1. You are a genius. @My Life as Lucille shared this with me and I am beyond grateful. Your words have changed my day - really - you've given me such clarity. Thank you thank you thank you.

    New fan here :)

  2. Excellent piece. Excellent advice. Excellent, excellent, excellent. "Drop the shovel." is my new favorite saying. Thank you for writing this.