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On a recent radio show, I listened as the hosts discussed how dangerous a woman’s purse can be on her physical body. The weight of the purse, plus all the contents may cause a strain on the woman’s back or perpetually cause her to slump.

Most women carry stuff in their purses that belong to their family members: toys for the children, medicines, cell phones, etc.luggage pic

And on the family vacation, who carries the tote bag? Mom, that’s who.

So it’s no wonder that we carry excess weight around – stuff that may not belong to us but often has been shared by someone else.

The really dangerous baggage, though, is the stuff we carry that causes emotional and mental damage.

Those words we thought we’d never hear, “I don’t love you anymore.”

“You don’t meet my needs.”

“It’s all your fault.”

The voices of the past cause a different kind of strain and cause damage to our hearts, keeping us from moving forward.

When we’re living in the past and listening to the voices of the past, we tend to slump through life. The strain of that emotional baggage weighs us down and life itself feels heavy.

So how do we deal with the emotional baggage? Actually, the same way we lighten our purses.

  • Dump everything out. Get it out of your system. Tell a therapist or a trust-worthy friend about the baggage you’ve been carrying.
  • Rearrange the stuff. Anything that’s not true – get rid of. Refuse to listen to those condemning voices.
  • Anything that IS true – forgive and let it go. Release the past into the place it needs to stay – the past.
  • Refuse to carry more stuff than you absolutely need. If anyone tries to give you more of their baggage, walk away.
  • Make sure your new purse –your new self – is the right size for your life.

Then walk self-confidently with a lighter step. Be who God created you to be – without carrying someone else’s baggage.

©2015 Starting Over Single