The Importance of Pruning
I was gardening the other day, pulling weeds and trimming back bushes. As I was cutting off beautiful, lush, green branches I was struck with a feeling of sadness. It was hard to destroy something as beautiful as these bushes were. But it needed to be done, the bushes needed to be pruned.
Any gardener will tell you that pruning is important. The hardest part of pruning is believing that whatever you cut off will eventually come back, especially when it’s cutting off entire vines or branches that look healthy. In some ways, that feels like murder. But it’s not, because it allows the plant to send nutrients to the more important places allowing fuller, more beautiful fruit or flowers.
There are times in life when we must prune ourselves. There will be aspects of our lives that are important to let go of and move on from because if we continue to let them stay in our lives, they will only draw energy and focus that would be better spent elsewhere.
Think of it this way. You have a glass of water. This water represents everything you have to focus on in a day. Theoretically, you this means you could have a third of the glass go toward watering the rose bush representing your job, a third go toward the petunias representing your family and friends, and a third going toward the sunflowers representing your individual health. Instead, without pruning yourself, it’s like you split those categories by fourths and dump the last fourth on the already dead dandelions that you never wanted in the first place.
Some aspects of our lives that should be pruned off and completely removed are toxic relationships, abusive situations, or relationships in which both parties don’t feel restored after being together.
There are times when relationships need to be worked out and giving up is not the right path. But there are also times when it is completely unnecessary to subject yourself to something that is only causing you pain. If loving them requires that you don’t love yourself, there is a problem.
Don’t be afraid to prune. Whatever you cut off will only allow space and nutrients for the things that need to grow.