Time will always pass by, actions will follow but only how you juggle on memories will determine what you want to take along. We obviously know that our past is gone and the events that formed the past can never be redone. The good, the bad, the beautiful or the ugly; they’ve already occurred; and all over now. What is important whenever we reminisce on our past is to make it as productive and relevant as possible to our present. While you cannot change what has happened, you can change how you think about it.
Usually, when you think about the past and allow the positive events to dominate your thoughts, the tendencies are that; you will likely be grateful for those happy moments and probably imagine reliving it which may result in another emotion of self-pity knowing very well you cannot relive the past. In some cases, it helps you think of ways to improve your present so that the happiness continues. On the contrary, if your memories of the past tilt more towards the events you termed negative, unless you deal with the emotions associated with those events with great responsibility, you will continue to carry them with you into the present moment and perhaps for as long as you live. To a large extent, if you failed to resolve issues of the past, the memories of such experiences may affect your personal, spiritual and emotional functionalities. For instance if as a child, you were greatly abused, molested or had been harshly criticized and failed to deal with it earlier on, you are more likely to become very defensive and insecure in your adult life, which in essence becomes part of you and a way of life.
When you do not let go of tales of unhappiness, resentment, or rejection that filled your past you find it increasingly difficult to merge present activities to your dreams, sometimes the feelings you hold on to from your past experiences even deter you from aspiring as high as possible, having allowed those emotions of fear, revenge, guilt, blame or insecurity, to affect other areas of your life; which may include your relationships with people, attitudes, business and money matters.
Undoubtedly, many of us have events, situations or people in our histories, which still evoke some emotions in us, but there is always time to work on such emotions in order to move beyond it. Maybe you have gone through some tough times that still speak “terror” to your present moments and you believe you can never live beyond the vestiges of that? Or are you finding it hard to forgive yourself for something you did years ago, and the guilt will not just fade? All you need do is, to take hold of your present moments, and believe in yourself and your ability to overcome, the effects of your past. The mistakes of yesteryear, either by you or other people, that have deposited a great deal of negative feelings within your body and soul, could be transformed from a severe liability into a valuable asset.
While you could successfully do away with your feelings of anger, revenge, guilt, blame or fear, you simply didn’t because there is a reward from holding onto your pain.
You gain a lot from the thrill of the story. By having the story to tell, you derive some pleasure and get accepted by others and perhaps more sympathy, but wait a minute; what value has the attention, sympathy or even the hatred you feel added to your existence?
There is no harm in telling stories of your past but not in a way to allow you to whirl in your self-pity, or make others feel sorry for you because this simply puts you down and draw you back into unpleasant meditations. Why not choose to use your past as a resource for progress rather than a pool for pain? Why not choose to use your past as a sort of benchmark, counting your blessings on how well you have transformed your past into an inspiration for others? Many people are comfortable making themselves feel bad and do so at any opportunity. No matter what acknowledgement and attention you receive from sinking yourself into the ludicrous slush of sad tales, it can’t be as gainful as directing all your energies to your present moment, striving with focus for a greater tomorrow.
Tips to help you get over the past
Make amends where possible – If you need to make an apology for a past event and you really know it is possible for you to do so, then go ahead and set your mind free. Say sorry to whom you think deserves it. However, if you require an apology, don’t demand it except it is given voluntarily, don’t get stuck to the idea that you deserve an apology and not tendered. You often get disappointed expecting some people to do the right things. It keeps you stuck and away from achieving something greater. Take your mind off it and deem it inessential, because not until you cut that chain, you cannot move forward. The process of making amends continue as you constantly aim to improve on our attitudes, behaviours, and a change in your outlook of the past in ensuring that the grievous harm from the past is totally erased.
Remember the past without strong emotions – Try as much as you can, not to revisit your past morbidly or needlessly. You should practice letting go of the feelings that bring back the hurt you knew before and always view your past from a perspective that will make it as harmless as possible to you. See your past as a storehouse of knowledge and information which can help you make connections to elevate your self-esteem, courage and confidence.
Need for acceptance– You have to accept the past, appreciate the experiences and acknowledge the lessons you have been able to learn from such experiences as all those will impact on your actions towards the positive changes required. You will then begin to tell just a story from one mile of the journey of your life and nothing more, simply accepting without condition and the more you accept, you become more accepting and forgiving to and of others.
Forgiveness- when you forgive you clear the way to attract happiness and abundance into your life because mustering hatred or resentment towards those who have wronged you will only blur your view towards what goodness can be learnt from your past experiences which you can turn into positive venture. Forgiveness allows you to grow not only in wisdom; it also strengthens your values as an individual.
“When you forgive, you in no way change the past – but you sure do change the future.” –Bernard Meltzer
Get creative: Rather than hold yourself down on the memories of the past, find something positive to occupy your mind with whenever the thoughts begin to roll in. You could start a project which will always keep you busy and get you aiming higher. You could join a club, belong to a group that interests you, watch your favourite movie, write songs, poems, stories or any craft you fancy. You could also use your mobile phone to engage yourself positively, or chat to the loved ones that bring you joy.
No matter what your past experiences may be, you can live happier, without any grudge against yourself and anyone else by being in control of your actions, emotions and decisions and by accepting that your past had been what it was, simply because nature wanted it so. You have choices with your present moment and you can make the best use of the tools you now have.