Speaker, Author, Consultant, Fraud Examiner

“Ow,” I loudly exclaimed, walking across a footpath in my yard, as I had a million times before. “What the heck? Stickers?”

We have never had stickers before. Why now? Good grief.

I am mostly barefoot during the summer months. In fact, if I could figure out how to speak at conventions barefoot, I would! And today was the day I actually wished I had shoes on my bare feet.

The sticker patches that had grown while I was not watching, looked innocent enough. The deep green patch of growth blended in with the St. Augustine grass. These were not the visible, typical grass stickers. These painful stickers were hidden by the deep green growth. One did not know what prize awaited their bare feet until they stepped on the otherwise luscious looking growth.

Deceptive growth, right?

One of the summers between my college years, I pulled weeds at a nursery. That was two very long months of tedious hot and sweaty work but I learned a lot about weeds and the different kinds of weeds. Some weeds are actually quite pretty but still a weed. Some weeds spread their tentacles out and some weeds spread up. Some weeds can cause a skin reaction, while other weeds can make you sneeze. Some weeds grow deep into the earth and some weeds have roots that are barely touching the earth.

But, in the end, they are all weeds and must be removed or the weeds will consume the beauty of a yard or flower bed. Pulling weeds is one of my least favorite jobs, perhaps because of that summer, but a necessary evil if I want to maintain my property.

Upon further inspection and analysis of this particular weed patch, I determine it had to be dug up. The roots went further into the ground and spread out on a broad area. I used the appropriate tool, a trowel that I had to dust off, dug out the menacing weeds and carefully lifted then placed them into a plastic bag for tomorrow’s garbage. I wanted to ensure none of the little weed’s seeds fell into the rich dirt, only to sprout again.

The night’s rain softened the ground to make the weed pulling easier. For that, I was very thankful. After working a six foot area, it was time to take a break. Pervasive in my thoughts are how to keep the culprit from growing back.

The very harsh reality is that weed seeds are most often carried by the wind. It has been very windy here the past few weeks. There may be nothing I can do to prevent the weeds but my oversight will keep them from taking deep root. Trust me – after digging out that six foot area with more to come, I will be watching for future weeds.

And I will know if the weeds are there – my feet will let me know quickly. Pain has a way to motivate us all. I could just wear shoes and ignore the weeds but these painful weeds will affect more than just me, but little bare feet as well. That compels me to take care of the problem.

You own your own interpretation, whether work or personal, but it is time to be weed free!
What will your pain points be to notify you to take action?