The Law of the Garbage Truck

“What you allow is what will continue.”

We have all been there at one time or another.

The morning held such promise but then on the commute to work, you get cut off and given the one-finger salute. You walk into work and a colleague who is two busy texting to watch were they are walking bumps into you, spilling your morning coffee down the front of you shirt.  Your boss then calls you into his office to unload a tirad that clearly has more to do with his unhappiness than it does with you or your work.

With each encounter you feel a weight of descend on your shoulders. You notice that every little inconvenience throughout the day just causes you more frustration and disappointment.  Finally the day ends and you arrive home — your sanctuary. As you walk through the door you are greeted by crying children, a frustrated wife and you finally lose it. The home atmosphere and family time

The home atmosphere and family time is ruined for the rest of the night.

If you are anything like me, about 30 minutes after this happens you are kicking yourself and wondering why you overreacted. You weren’t angry at your family, in fact you had been looking forward to getting home and spending time with them, all day. Why did you let something so trivial become such a big deal?

You my friend are a casualty of “The Law of the Garbage Truck.”

David Pollay, bestselling author, performance coach and keynote speaker explains “The Law of the Garbage Truck” and how he came up with the idea like this:

“I hopped in a taxi, and we took off for Grand Central Station. We were driving in the right lane when all of a sudden, a black car jumped out of a parking space right in front of us. My taxi driver slammed on his brakes, the car skidded, the tires squealed, and at the very last moment, our car stopped just one inch from the other car’s back-end.

I couldn’t believe it. But then I couldn’t believe what happened next. The driver of the other car, the guy who almost caused a big accident, whipped his head around and he started yelling bad words at us. How do I know? Ask any New Yorker, some words in New York come with a special face. And he even threw in a one finger salute! I couldn’t believe it!

But then here’s what really blew me away. My taxi driver just smiled and waved at the guy. And I mean, he was friendly. So, I said, “Why did you just do that!? This guy could have killed us!” And this is when my taxi driver told me what I now call, “The Law of the Garbage Truck®.” He said:”

‘Many people are like garbage trucks. They run around full of garbage, full of frustration, full of anger, and full of disappointment. As their garbage piles up, they look for a place to dump it. And if you let them, they’ll dump it on you. So when someone wants to dump on you, don’t take it personally. Just smile, wave, wish them well, and move on. Believe me. You’ll be happier.’

We can’t control other people or the things that happen around us. What we can control is what we allow to affect our spirit.

The scriptures warns us to, “Make no friendship with an angry man; and with a furious man thou shalt not go: Lest thou learn his ways, and get a snare to thy soul.

When things happen such as, getting cut off, cursed at, or someone takes their frustration out on you, you can’t take it personally. The actions taken by others say more about them than do about you. So don’t let their anger snare your soul. You are only responsible for how you react to these situations not the situations themselves.

If you do find yourself getting frustrated or angry. Don’t take it home with you. Your wife and kids only see you for a limited time each day and if the only part of you they get to enjoy is the angry frustrated part, your relationships will suffer.

On the drive home take the time to relax. Start by turning off your radio and enjoy the quiet time. Take the time to work through the days events and change your mindset to a more positive one. Try and see the humor in all the negativity of the day and most importantly, pray and ask God to help you get into the right spirit.

As I said before, you can’t control other people or the events that happen around you during the day. But you can decide whether you will carry home the negativity others dump on you or if you will refuse to let it affect you and simply walk in the joy of the Lord.

Remember, what you allow into your day, your life and ultimately your soul is what will continue.


9 thoughts on “The Law of the Garbage Truck

  1. Yea, I hate when I over react and then feel guilty about it. We have a very open convo type of family and typically, I’ll just say hey, sorry and this is why this happened. And we move on!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Being willing to admit our mistake and ask forgiveness is not only the right thing to do but I think it also teaches our children a good lesson. Thanks for the comment!

      Liked by 1 person

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