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FAMILY FUSION: Dumping dead weight

Reverend Haynesley Griffith, [email protected]

FAMILY FUSION: Dumping dead weight

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The most potent weapon of the oppressor is the mind of the oppressed. – Steven Biko

THE FINAL WEEK OF 2016 is here. Why not make it a time of critically examining some possible dead weight you may have been carrying and decide to take some definitive steps to dump it from your life before stepping into 2017?     

Someone defined dead weight as “A person who just takes up space and has nothing to really offer any of his or her peers. Someone who is just not a team player and may even be considered a brick wall to some.”

Perhaps this definition fits right into your experience during the year.  Upon reflection you realize that these unnecessary “space takers” have done very little or absolutely nothing to contribute to your well-being but have been like albatrosses around the neck of your progress. It may be time to seriously consider getting them out of your space so you can lighten up your life to make remarkable headway in the year ahead of you. Here are a few areas to consider.

Dump drug abusers

Individuals who may be encouraging you to absorb illegal drugs into your body are not your friends, but some of your worse enemies. They do not have your best interest at heart. They are dead weight, so I suggest you dump them from your life before this year finishes. Think about it, your brain is your body’s communication control centre. It is said to contain about 100 billion nerve cells and is far more complex than any man-made computer. 

With lightning speed it is able to send, receive and process messages that are designed to keep every system in your body working excellently. Taking illegal substances into your body can mess up the communication system and prevent you from functioning effectively. 

These banned substances create a fertile environment for a long list of serious mental health issues andphysical challenges such as cancer, hepatitis, heart disease, stroke, HIV/AIDS, lung disease and even death, just to name a few. I think Tina Turner’s counsel is worth considering: “Sometimes you’ve got to let everything go – purge yourself. If you are unhappy with anything . . . whatever is bringing you down, get rid of it. Because you’ll find that when you’re free, your true creativity, your true self comes out.” 

Dump the outside woman or man

One of the reasons why there are so many fractures within family life is that there are too many married men and women who seem to forget that they made a covenant with their spouses at the sacred altar.

The psychologically scarred spouses or individuals, emotionally disturbed children, along with financial problems, diverse social perplexities, numerous divorces, disrespect and the long list of negatives, are some of the off shoots of the prevalence of cheating. The wisest man who ever lived admitted he had become one of the biggest fools.

He was married but had 300 outside women. After his years of exploits he concluded that all was “vanity and vexation of (his own) spirit”. He sat his son down one day and told him that an adulterous person not only lacks understanding but also, by his/her action, places a deadly “fire in his (her) bosom”.

My counsel to both married men and women who are involved in this adulterous behaviour: begin to see it not only as a selfish act on your part but also total disrespect to the one with whom you made a lifelong commitment in the presence of God.

Melody Beattie was right when she said: “Letting go helps us to live in a more peaceful state of mind and helps restore our balance. It allows others to be responsible for themselves and for us to take our hands off situations that do not belong to us. This frees us from unnecessary stress.”  

Dump the deadweight from your life before this year closes and give one hundred per cent to building cohesiveness within your family. 

Dump human parasites

Someone once said: “Allowing people inside your life is a beautiful thing. Letting go of people who drain your spirit is another beautiful thing you can do for your life. The key to being happy is knowing you have the power to choose what to accept and what to let go.”

There are many individuals whocan say “Amen” to the statement but refuse to muster up enough courage to dump some human parasites who habitually suck the emotional blood out of their lives on a daily basis, leaving them in a state of distress.

These individuals are dead weight. I believe Nigerian writer Michael Bassey Johnson  put the issue in perspective when he made this powerful statement: “Stay away from lazy parasites who perch on you just to satisfy their needs, they do not come to alleviate your burdens, hence, their mission is to distract, detract and extract, and make you live in abject poverty.”

Many years ago I remember a hard-working, intelligent young woman who assertively told her lazy boyfriend, who gradually crept into her home and over time begun to sponge on her, to get out of her house.

The woman said she felt a burden lifted off her shoulders when she made that choice.

The dead weight had gone. She went on to improve her life significantly. I also know of men who wisely and courageously made similar choices and reaped great benefits. If there are individuals who have been coming in and out of your life and taking advantage of you, it may be time to seriously consider ridding yourself of such dead weight before this year closes. Dump those parasites.

Can you imagine the progress you may be able to make without dead weight?

Try it.

• Haynesley Griffith is a marriage and family life consultant. Email: [email protected]