In order to heal our lives and move forward, we need to let go of the past. How many times have we heard this statement? Yet, most of us feel at least a little resistance at the thought of letting go of the past. In truth, most people feel a great deal of reluctance to “let go of the past.”
Why do we resist?
Many times we hold on to the past simply because we are afraid of change. We have an amazing propensity to hold onto the familiar–even if it is causing us harm. How often have we clung to a destructive relationship, a job we have long outgrown, or even a consistently poor performing financial investment just because we are afraid of change? Generally speaking our greatest fear is of the unknown. Since the very nature of life is change, we are powerless to remain in the status quo. Our choice is to be victimized by the changes that are naturally evolving all around us or to make conscious choices that coincide with the quality of life we want to be living in present time.
Isn’t it important to remember the past?
Of course it is. Healing our lives does not require that we forget the past. But remembering is not the same thing as becoming entrapped in old patterns of behavior simply because we are afraid to make changes. Past experiences, both positive and negative, serve us well when we learn from them and use these lessons as a springboard from which to launch new thought patterns that promote our health and growth.
What we need to let go of is our tendency to continue to focus on the painful memories of the past. Since whatever we focus on is what we create, every time we give our attention to a painful situation from the past, we give our energy to repeating the same patterns of behavior. For example, if you habitually focus on childhood abandonment, you are likely to find yourself in many relationships where you are abandoned. Just as importantly, it is essential to realize that every time you focus your attention on painful memories of the past, you re-create the stressful mind and body responses that you associate with that memory, such as grief, depression, and heartache.
How Do We Let Go of the Past?
Forgive Yourself – Free yourself from your bondage to the past by forgiving yourself for the many choices you made that you now perceive as “mistakes.” Sure, in retrospect, you might have done things differently. Remember, you have gotten wiser with every experience you have had, so back then you didn’t have the same basis of knowledge that you now have.
Forgive The People Who Have Hurt You – Take back your power! Every time you blame someone for painful experiences in the past you are allowing them to rule your thoughts!
Be Conscious of Your Thinking – Become aware of when your thoughts are focused on negative past events and situations. Simply acknowledging where you are giving your attention empowers you to return your thoughts to present time.
Express gratitude for the lessons learned – Focus on how you have learned and grown with every experience you have had.
Choose to be in present time – Savor every moment of your life journey. Since the past is over and the future is not yet here, the only time that is “real” is NOW.
Where you are in life right now is the result of your thoughts from the past. Being fully present empowers you to make new choices that can change your reality. In fact, whatever you are thinking in this moment is creating your future!
Love and Light,
Do you have any experiences you would like to share that have prepared you to live in present time? As always, I welcome your thoughts.