Why do we travel to the past in our minds? Why do we get so caught up in what happened, when, where, how, with who and relive it as it were happening right now?
I did for a long time and still do. Whether it’s going back into past relationships and bringing up regrets, thinking of what I could have done better, or why I said what I said and why I didn’t say what I should have. Or going back and thinking of a choice I made that led me down the wrong path and how I wish I could turn back time and choose differently. Or thinking of the confrontation I had and why I let my anger do the talking. Believe me, I could go on forever. I’m a professional mental time traveller. But I don’t want to be anymore. Apart from a good lesson learned, it adds nothing to my now.
Going back to the past is exhausting, it’s draining and it robs you. It robs you of your happiness, it robs you of your now and it even robs you of your future.
We bring the drama of the past into our current relationships, friendships and everything in between. Not only do we go a few days back, a few months or a few years back, but we continue going over and bringing up things that occurred when we were children.
Allowing yourself to keep getting dragged into the past, will feel like you are being dragged underwater. You won’t be able to breathe, you won’t be able to think, you will just keep fighting to stay afloat. You will drown in your own thoughts. You’ll struggle to breath and the past will fill your lungs, making each breath heavier and heavier.
If we were meant to go back to the past, time travel would be possible. It’s not, so there’s no point taking your mind back there. There’s no use in going to a place that doesn’t exist anymore.
Would you continue trying to make reservations for a hotel that closed its doors years ago? No, you’d just click on Booking.com and find a new place to stay. If you dined at a restaurant and wasn’t happy with the food or service would you continue going back to see if anything had changed? No, you wouldn’t. You’d complain, pay the bill, (hopefully get a discount and an apology), write a bad review on TripAdvisor and never go back. You’d then jump on Zomato, find a better one and dine elsewhere.
Same with the past. Do your complaining, your crying, pay your dues, get your justice if you can and move on to the now part of your life.
What I’m saying is by no means dismissing some of the traumatic things that have occurred in people’s lives, not at all. I’m trying to encourage and empower those who have been through a lot or a little. Those with the spilt milk, the bad breakup, the money lost and even those who have gone through immeasurable pain. This is a post to wake you up and tell you you’re alive!
You’re living, you’re breathing, you’re still here. Look at how far you’ve come, and look ahead at how much further you can go. Don’t let fear stop you, don’t let your mind stop you, don’t let someone who is no longer relevant in your life stop you, don’t let someone who was NEVER relevant in your life stop you.
When you think of the past instead of feeling regret, sadness, fear or anger – feel EMPOWERED, feel strong, unshakeable, unbreakable. Why? Because you’ve come out the other side, you’ve learnt from it. No one or nothing can mess with you now. No one or nothing can tear you down now.
So, whatever it is you keep going back to in your head, go back one last time, look at it face to face, confront it and say “you don’t belong in my life anymore, I have no room for you in my present or my future. Thank you for the lesson. I bless you and let you go.” Then kick it to the curb and move on with your precious life.
You only have one.