The Law of the Garbage Truck

The Law of the Garbage Truck

The Law of the Garbage Truck

This is one of those times when your typical motivational speaker would be able to fake it and give you great words of inspiration.  Unfortunately, I am not your typical speaker.

It was an extremely difficult weekend with Evan.  He was aggressive and very emotional  On Friday, we had to fill out the paperwork to let them begin testing to put him in special education.  I don’t know why it was so hard for me.  It will allow them to provide him with additional services and attention.  I guess it is the first time I had to really admit to myself that his life may be very different from what I had hoped and wished for.

In any case, rather than try to fake it, I decided to post one of my favorite “motivational stories”.  I will be following my own advice and focus on choosing how I think this week.  Not easy…..but doable.

Thanks again for your continued prayers and support.

The Genius Of A Taxi Driver

One day I hopped in a taxi and we took off for the airport. We were driving in the right lane when suddenly a car jumped out of a parking space right in front of us. My taxi driver slammed on his brakes, skidded, and missed the other car by just inches! The driver of the other car whipped his head around and started yelling at us.

My taxi driver just smiled and waved at the guy. And I mean, he was really friendly. So I asked, ‘Why did you just do that? This guy almost ruined your car and sent us to the hospital!’ This is when my taxi driver taught me what I now call, ‘The Law of the Garbage Truck.’

He explained that 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 need a place to dump it and sometimes they’ll dump it on you.

Don’t Take It Personally!

Instead, just smile, wave, wish them well, and move on. Don’t take their garbage and spread it to other people at work, at home, or on the streets. The bottom line is that successful people do not let garbage trucks take over their day. Life is too short to wake up in the morning with regrets, so…..

Love the people who treat you right. Pray for the ones who don’t, and watch out for the garbage trucks!’

Make it a wonderful week!

Subscribe to Anne's Resilience Reset Email!

Anne breaks down the daily habits and skills needed to grow and cultivate RESILIENCE.

Read that again. 🙌 ...

I played piano from the time I was four years old until the age of 15 and during that time, I had a lot of recitals. I remember being so nervous before each recital. What if I played the wrong note? What if I forgot the music? My dad would look at me, hold my hands, and say:

Whatever you do, DO NOT think of pink elephants!!

At the time, I had no idea why in the world he would say this. All I do know is that when I sat down to play, all I saw were pink elephants, and I was able to tackle my nerves.

Turns out my dad was helping me to practice the ironic process theory which explains that when we try to suppress our thoughts, we focus on them even more. Seventy to 80% of our thoughts are negative and repetitive. If not managed, intrusive thoughts can lead to anxiety, depression, and a whole host of mental health challenges.

If you tend to get stuck in rumination, or if your thoughts sometimes get the best of you, here are a few ways to take back control:

1️⃣ Recognize that your thoughts are not facts.
2️⃣ Use your brain. Do a math problem, practice a different language, or play a puzzle game. When you access the prefrontal cortex, the higher level thinking part of your brain, you get out of the emotional limbic system.
3️⃣ Distract yourself. Sometimes a simple distraction gives you enough distance to quiet your intrusive thoughts.
4️⃣ Practice mindfulness.
5️⃣ See a therapist. When negative, intrusive thoughts impact your ability to do your job, maintain relationships, or start clouding your judgment, it may be time to get help. As someone with plenty of intrusive thoughts, therapy has helped me tremendously.

Don’t forget, your thoughts and feelings are not facts. They are simply habits that need to be shifted. Be patient with yourself, and if all else fails, whatever you do, DO NOT THINK OF PINK ELEPHANTS!

Pets provide a deep sense connection and unconditional love. I don’t know what I’d do without without these two nut jobs! Happy National Love Your Pet Day! ❤️🐶 #mindfulmonday #mindfulness #petsnuggles #ilovemydogs #petsofinstagram #nationalloveyourpetday ...

I hope your Friday includes donuts. 🍩 ...

Midweek reminder: Reset your mindset. 🧠 ...

Read Up on Resilience!

Anne’s Books Available on!


Anne Grady is a Speaker, Author, and #TruthBomb Dropper.

Anne shares practical strategies that can be applied both personally and professionally to improve relationships, navigate change, and triumph over adversity. And she’ll make you laugh while she does it. Anne is a two time TEDx speaker, and her work has been featured in numerous media outlets, including Harvard Business Review, Entrepreneur, Forbes, Fast Company and Inc. magazines, CNN, ESPN, and FOX Business. She is the best selling author of 3 books. Her newest, Mind Over Moment: Harness the Power of Resilience, is available on Amazon now.


  1. Wishin you and Evan the best…..makes me think of when I might have been that garbage truck. This week I will pay more attention to my actions and reactions…

  2. I work for the largest university in the nation, and our solid waste/recycling program is used as a benchmark by other universities; this story will make a great read for our staff. My prayers and best wishes to you and your family.

  3. Your good sense of boundaries show through in choosing The Law of the Garbage Truck for motivation this week; a great story. Good boundaries help us all to conserve and preserve. Thanks Anne.

  4. Anne, you have been an incredible mother to Evan and an inspiration to many. Thank you for the Garbage Truck story. I think I dumped some garbage on a co-worker today, but this little story will certainly make me think next time I start to let go!

  5. Hello-

    I don’t typcially write/respond to a blog, however my deepest sympathy goes out to you and your family during this time. I too, have a son that had to receive special education (due to a learning disability). As a result, he did receive a lot of services that aren’t typically available to others. I had to do a sort of reality check and realize that my feeling have nothing to do with my child’s ability to learn (or vise-versa). I am so greatful for the services he recieved/receives, however as a parent I felt a little helpless. We all want to the very best for our children (especially I we felt hardships during our childhood) and sometimes it is just out of our hands. I found comfort in learning as much as I could about my son disability and found support groups with parents also in my situation.

    Goes to show that we really do need a village to raise a child…:-).

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Post comment