Pain from our past can sometimes keep us from forging ahead to better days.
While embedded issues of emotional and psychological pain can in no way be “magically healed” through the words of a simple blog post, I’d like to share some interesting perspectives that I came across in a recent article in Senior Living magazine. They just might prove helpful.
The strategy was broken down into 10 facts that help recast how we think about the past in order to help lead us into brighter futures. And while it’s always best to consult with a professional when dealing with such important issues, these facts do seem universal enough to share them with you here.
1. The past isn’t really the past.
It is simply a collection of moments still experienced in the present, which allows us to deal with them now, in the present, instead of seeing them as part of some far and unreachable past.
2. Memories are not the problem.
They only become a problem when we give them attention and meaning; choose to lose interest in them, and they will lose their powerful sway.
3. Healing means letting go.
When we neutralize the story of the past by releasing it, it will lose its power over us.
4. Become fed up about how the past impacts you.
If we cultivate sadness, regret and revenge, they will become our reality. If we consciously change the script of the past, we’ll see the energy around us begin to change.
5. Take full responsibility.
This gives you and me the power to determine the past’s grip on us; not someone else or some other thing. Then, we must choose to release it.
6. Stop replaying and repeating the story.
Because when we do, we continue reinforcing its associated feelings and emotions.
7. Let go of your beliefs about the story.
We often feel these beliefs justify the story, but they are truly only additional thoughts we have allowed ourselves to attach to the story. When we choose to release them, as well, we weaken the power of the story.
8. Relationship troubles usually relate to the past.
Again, we need to untangle our thoughts and feelings from the story of our past, or the story will continue to define new stories yet to be formed, entangling us in a viscous cycle.
9. The middle path is the intelligent path.
We cannot allow the story of the past or its associated emotions to toss us to and fro; we need to hold fast in a position of balance, in the center, a place of peace and ease.
10. Finding out who you really are is the ultimate freedom.
Defining ourselves today by what happened yesterday will never help. We must shed ourselves of this self-created identity, and seek a new awareness of who we are in spite, not because, of the pain.
This last fact — which is really the sum of them all — is the most liberating, because it leads us to a new and truer awareness of ourselves, one of a victor not a victim. This forms a new story, and in it, we are a victor over circumstance, a victor over adversity and, ultimately, a victor over the pain of the past.